Stout is a natural addition to the shepherd's pie. The roasted flavors of the stout compliment the lamb and the rich flavors in the savory pie filling.
- To make this stout shepherd's pie, start by preheating your oven to 375°F and prepping your ingredients. When cutting up the lamb leg, make sure to trim off most of the fat from the fat cap (the large, white piece of fat on the exterior of the leg).
- Put the cubed lamb into a bowl and season lightly with salt and pepper. Cover the lamb with the flour and thoroughly coat all the pieces. Heat a sauté pan (cast iron if you have one) and add the canola oil and two tablespoons of butter.
- Once the butter is melted, add the lamb and sear on all sides. When the pieces are nicely browned, remove from the pan, add the onions and season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Sauté the onions for five minutes and then add the garlic, carrots and mushrooms. Add another light pinch of salt and pepper, and cook for another 10 minutes. Add the peas.
- If you're not using a deep pan, move the vegetables from the sauté pan to a baking dish and add the lamb back in. Otherwise, add the lamb back to the mixture.
- Pour in the stock and beer and bring the mixture to a simmer. Add the oregano and thyme. If you're using fresh oregano and thyme, you can skip removing the leaves from the stems and simply tie them together in a bunch using butchers twine. This is called a bouquet garni. Dried herbs work just as well, too.
- Allow the sauce to simmer for 20 minutes or until it begins to thicken.
- As the filling simmers, add the potatoes to a pot of salted water and bring a boil.
- Once the water boils, reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain the water and mash the potatoes. Add the remaining four tablespoons of butter and a pinch of salt and pepper. Continue to mash until the butter melts. Add the milk, combine and taste. Add salt and pepper as necessary.
- When the potatoes and filling are ready, scoop the potatoes on top of the lamb and smooth out until the top is thoroughly covered. Stick the pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove, plate and enjoy.