Healthy Shepherd’s Pie: Best Thanksgiving Leftovers Recipe
Well, you know I am French, I live in New Zealand and I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. HAHA so why do I make a Sweet Potatoes Turkey healthy Shepherd’s Pie when it is so warm outside in Auckland? I am simply preparing lots of make-ahead freezer meals before I have that baby. I love Shepherd’s Pie. Or should I say Hachis Parmentier as we call it in French. Both recipe are very similar. I am particularly in love with sweet potatoes and I can’t stop making recipes with it. Check out my lovely sweet potato tots or sweet potato crust quiche if you love sweet potatoes recipe as well!
In France mum used to make this recipe with leftover of Pot au Feu. Pot au feu is a huge beef pot meal cooked for hours in vegetable stock with carrots, swedes and cabbage. It gives a sort of pulled apart beef that you can reuse in any recipe like Shepherd’s Pie or bolognese. So this is my healthy Shepherd’s Pie recipe. A French inspired recipe with a Kiwi twist – Kiwi loves sweet potatoes or should I say Kumara ?
As I am obsessed with healthy lower carb recipe I choose to use mash sweet potatoes for the crust. French and American use mash potatoes which taste amazing but slightly higher in carbs. I sprinkle almond meal on top of the crust instead of the regular emmental cheese mum used. It not only lightened up the dish but also add a crispy texture after you let it grill 5 minutes in the oven ! Almond meal is such a perfect replacement to cheese on gratin.
I made two large dishes with this recipe and I freeze all of it in airtight plastic container. It just made my first 8 healthy freeze-ahead meals before baby arrives. I will probably make more easy freezer meals in the next few weeks as baby arrive in 7 weeks now.
Healthy Shepherd's Pie with sweet potato
Turkey and lentils filling
- 450 g (1 lb ) ground turkey or leftover of turkey
- 2 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil of your choice
- 1 brown onion peeled, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 green capsicum cored, diced
- 1 carrot peeled, diced
- 400 g (0.8 lb) canned brown lentils drained, rinsed
- 1/4 cup almond meal for the top
- Preheat oven to 200 C (390 F)
- Wash the sweet potatoes. Cut half lengthwise and place them on a cookie sheet covered with baking paper. Make sure the sweet potatoes flesh is on the baking paper skin outside. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until it is soft enough to insert a skewers in the center. Remove from the oven let cool down until you can handle them by hands - about 15 minutes. Use a spoon to remove the sweet potatoes flesh and transfer into a a large mixing bowl. Repeat until all the sweet potatoes flesh has been removed. Discard the skin.
- Use a potato masher to mash the sweet potatoes flesh into a puree. Place the mashed sweet potatoes in a saucepan with coconut oil, coconut milk, salt, pepper and ground nutmeg.
- Under medium heat, combine all the ingredients until it forms a thick sweet potatoes mash. It should not take more than 10 minutes. Set aside.
- In a large skillet or frying pan warm the olive oil. Add the minced garlic, finely chopped brown onion and sauteed for few minutes until golden and fragrant. Add the minced turkey - or turkey leftover - and fry for few minutes. Add the diced vegetables - capsicum and carrots. Cover, reduce to medium heat and simmer until the vegetables are soft - about 15 minutes. When the vegetables are soft stir in the canned brown lentils. Cover and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
- While the vegetable cook prepare the sauce.
- In a saucepan, under medium heat add the vegetable broth and whisk in the tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, arrowroot flour and pepper. Bring to boil but make sure you whisk constantly to avoid the mixing to stick to the saucepan. Reduce heat to simmer for 2-3 minutes until the sauce thicken.
- Stir the sauce with the cooked ground turkey and mixed vegetable. Cover. Simmer for 2-3 extra minutes to flavor the meat with the sauce.
- Transfer the meat into a large baking dish or two baking dish. Spread the mash sweet potatoes on top and sprinkle with almond meal. Bake for 30 minutes. Switch the oven to grill during the last 2-3 minutes to make the crust and crisp the almond meal.
- Serve immediately or freeze in airtight container when the dish reach room temperature. Store in the fridge up to 4 days.