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Vegetable Shepherd’s Pie

Yield: 6-8 servings 1x
Prep: 30 minsCook: 1 hourTotal: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup large diced onion
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup large diced celery
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 pound lentils (one bag)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 1 cup diced fresh garden tomatoes
  • 1 quart vegetable stock
  • 1 head cauliflower, cleaned and cut into floret’s (about a 2 pound head)
  • 3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 8 ounces fresh baby spinach


  1. In a medium to large pot, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high and add onions, carrots, mushrooms, celery and garlic. Sauté for five minutes and add lentils. Cook for one minute.
  2. Add thyme and tomatoes and cook for three more minutes.
  3. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat to a simmer and cook covered for 20 minutes. Do not add salt yet or lentils will be tough.
  4. While the lentils are cooking, place cauliflower in a medium pot and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until tender. Reserve ½ cup of the water in a cup and drain the remainder.
  5. Place drained cauliflower in the bowl of a food processor and add 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, ½ teaspoon of pepper and garlic powder. Turn to puree and slowly add some or all of the reserved water until the cauliflower is pureed and the consistency of soft mashed potatoes.
  6. Place the egg yolk in a small bowl and add spoonfuls of the hot cauliflower mixture stirring after each spoonful to temper the egg yolk. Once the egg mixture is tempered, stir back into cauliflower mixture. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and pour the mixture back into pot and keep the lid on to retain the heat.
  7. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  8. After 20 minutes of cooking lentils, remove from heat and add peas, the remaining salt and remaining pepper.
  9. Pour entire mixture into a 3 quart casserole dish but reserve a small amount of lentil cooking liquid in the pan.
  10. Place the spinach in the pan with the liquid and cook just long enough to wilt the spinach. Pour the wilted spinach and any remaining liquid over the lentils.
  11. Finally spoon the mashed cauliflower over the spinach and bake uncovered for 40 minutes.
  12. Remove from oven and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

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