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Argentinian Shepherd’s Pie Pastries

July 16, 2011

topped with alfalfa sprouts

AUGUST 2010 — I got together with Melissa and Kim again, and in addition to making alfajores, I also made shepherd’s pie. I’m not sure what compelled to make this very hearty English dish, but I know it wasn’t going to be the same at all once I had decided to get ground turkey instead of beef or lamb. But I think that once I spotted paprika standing idly in Kim’s pantry, (since my spice cabinet at home is very sparse,) I knew at once I wanted to put an Argentinian spin on it. (Paprika is an essential spice in beef empanadas.)

So what did you do?
The filling was ground turkey, a can of crushed tomatoes, and onion. I stewed that and added some heavy dashes of paprika. Because we had leftover puff pastry from dessert, which we were making in advance, I thought that it would be classy to put the shepherd’s pie into puff pastry tart shells.

probably one of my favorite food photos

To do this, we took a cupcake tin, and cut out squares of puff pastry and molded them into the tin. Having learned from this experience, I made sure to poke holes into the pastry throughout so that it wouldn’t puff up too much.
Shepherd’s pie typically has a top layered of browned mashed potatoes, but to be classier (and simpler), and more “gourmet,” I thought it would look chique if I just cut a small semi-circle of a Yukon gold potato as a layer. Thinness would be key here, so that it would cook thoroughly. I sprayed the potatoes with an extra little spray of PAM, so that way it might resemble a potato chip a bit and be nice and crispy.

Lessons learned?
Argentina meets England.

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