Bison Shepherd’s Pie

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

This is an excellent one-dish meal.  It also has the benefit of being easy to make a day or so in advance, making it perfect for serving during halftime of a football game on a chilly autumn day.

Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine

For the Meat Layer

  • 2 Tb extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 lbs ground bison
  • 2 cups diced yellow onion
  • 8 oz mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 Tb tomato paste
  • 3 Tb chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 Tb Wondra flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup red wine

For the Vegetable Layer

  • 2 cups peeled carrots, diced
  • 2 cups peas
  • 2 cups corn

For the Potato Layer

  • 3 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 head cauliflower, coarsely chopped
  • 1 stick butter, room temperature
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1.5 cups grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tb finely grated fresh horseradish
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Chopped parsley for garnish
  • Smoked Paprika

Prepare meat layer – Heat 1 Tb of the olive oil in a large pan over high heat.  Add bison meat and sauté until browned throughout – about 5 minutes.  Remove cooked bison meat to a bowl.  Add the other 1Tb of olive oil, then add the onions, mushrooms, and some salt.  Cook for about 7 minutes, then add tomato paste.  Cook while stirring until well combined, 1 – 2 minutes.  Add thyme and flour, and stir to combine.  Add wine, broth, and bison and bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat and simmer until sauce thickens, 12 – 15 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.  Remove from heat and scrape into a buttered baking dish (10 x 15 will work better than 9 x 14).

Prepare the vegetable layer – Cook the carrots in salted boiling water for about 4 minutes.  Drain, then transfer to a bowl.  Add the peas and corn to the bowl and toss.  Spread the vegetables evenly over the meat layer.

Prepare the potato layer – Cook potatoes and cauliflower in a pot of salted boiling water until tender, about 12 minutes.  Drain, reserving some cooking liquid.  Mash (or process in a food processor) with 1 cup of the cooking liquid until mixture is smooth.  Transfer to a bowl, then add the butter, cream, one cup of the parmesan, and the horseradish.  Stir to combine.  Season with salt and pepper, then spread on top of the meat and vegetables.

Drizzle lightly with oil and sprinkle with the remaining parmesan.

The dish can be made to this point a day in advance and refrigerated (covered).  If you have done so, allow to stand at room temperature for 2 hours before proceeding.

Finish the dish – preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Bake, uncovered, until heated and lightly browned, 45 – 50 minutes.  Sprinkle with parsley and smoked paprika and serve.

1 Response to “Bison Shepherd’s Pie”

  1. 1 Dad November 7, 2010 at 5:38 PM

    Just Yummy!

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