Vegetable Shepherd's Pie - Northern Michigan's News Leader

Vegetable Shepherd's Pie

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Topping
3 lb. Russet potatoes, unpeeled
3lb. Yukon Gold potatoes, unpeeled
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into ½ " cubes
1 ½ -2 cups whole milk, warmed
Kosher salt

Filling
1 oz. dried porcini mushrooms
¾ cup brown or French green lentils
6 garlic cloves, divided, plus 2 Tbsp. chopped garlic
1 tsp. kosher salt plus more
5 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
3 cups coarsely chopped onions
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 bay leaves
2 cups dry white wine
8 cups vegetable broth
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 Tbsp. gluten-free white miso or 2 tsp. gluten-free tamari soy sauce
freshly ground black pepper
12 cups ½" pieces peeled fall vegetables (such as squash, turnips, carrots and parsnips)
1 cup frozen pearl onions, thawed, halved
2 4" rosemary sprigs
2 cups bite size pieces mixed fresh mushrooms
¼ cup chopped mixed fresh herbs (such as parsley, chives and sage)

Directions:
Topping: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bake potatoes on a foil lined baking sheet until tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool slightly, then peel. Press potatoes through a ricer, food mill, or colander into a large bowl. Add butter; stir until well blended. Stir in milk. Season to taste with salt.

Do Ahead: Potatoes can be made 1 day ahead. Let cool, press plastic wrap directly onto potatoes, and chill.

Filling: Soak dried porcini in 3 cups hot water; set aside. Combine lentils, 1 garlic clove, 1tsp. salt, and 4 cups water in a medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender but not mushy, 15-20 minutes. Drain lentils and discard garlic.

Heat 3 Tbsp. oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 12 minutes. Add chopped garlic and cook for 1 minute. Stir in tomato paste. Cook, stirring constantly, until tomato paste is caramelized, 2-3 minutes.

Add bay leaves and wine; stir, scraping up any browned bits. Stir in porcini, slowly pouring porcini soaking liquid into pan but leaving any sediment behind. Bring to a simmer and cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 10minutes. Stir in broth and cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, about 45 minutes.

Strain mixture into a large saucepan and bring to a boil; discard solids in strainer. Stir cornstarch and 2 Tbsp. water in a small bowl to dissolve. Add cornstarch mixture; simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in miso. Season sauce with salt and pepper, Set aside.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss vegetables and pearl onions with remaining 2 Tbsp. oil, garlic cloves, and rosemary sprigs in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Divide between 2 rimmed baking sheets. Roast, stirring once, until tender, 20-25 minutes. Transfer garlic cloves to a small bowl; mash well with a fork and stir into sauce. Discard rosemary.

Do Ahead: Lentils, sauce, and vegetables can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately; chill. Arrange lentils in an even layer in a 3-qt. baking dish; set dish on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Toss roasted vegetables with fresh vegetables. Spoon potato mixture evenly over.

Bake until browned and bubbly, about 30 minutes. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.