Author Notes: I wanted to make a really flavorful vegan "shepard's pie," using mashed carrots in lieu of mashed potatoes. Both parts of the recipe can be made in advance***, but I describe it below as two parts that are prepared side-by-side, to economize on time. This recipe is also gluten free, the stew gets thickened with pureed beans. This pie could be served as a main dish with seasoned grains and a salad or it could go alongside some roasted meat. The stew alone is quite tasty on its own with crostini. - Sadassa_Ulna
Serves 6 (main dish) -10 (side)
White Bean Stew
- 3-1/2 cups cooked white beans, divided*
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- 1-1/2 cup diced onion
- 4 ribs celery, chopped, (about 1-1/2 cups) include leafy tops
- 6 cloves garlic, pressed or chopped fine
- 2/3 cups veg. stock or amber beer
- 2-1/2 cups cremini mushrooms, chopped
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes,** chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon ground dried sage
- 1-1/4 teaspoon ground dried thyme
- 1-1/2 teaspoon crushed dried rosemary
- 3/4 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper (or to taste)
- Reserve 1/2 cup cooked white beans, set aside.
- Heat 1/3 cup of the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat; add the onion and celery. Stir occasionally for 7 minutes, add the garlic and cook until garlic starts to turn golden. Lower heat to low and continue to cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally until celery starts to get a little soft. Meanwhile get the carrot mash started.
- While carrots are cooking, blend 1/2 cup of the white beans with the remaining olive oil and slow;y add 1/2 cup water in a food processor (or large mortar and pestle). Add about half the sun-dried tomatoes and puree until smooth. Reserve.
- Once celery is soft, add the mushrooms. Stir and cook for 5 minutes more. Make a well in the middle and add the stock, spices, and celery leaves. Stir thoroughly and add the bean puree and remaining sundried tomatoes. Add remaining white beans and stir gently. Stew should be fairly thick. Turn off heat and get back to the carrot mash.
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place stew in a small casserole dish, approximately 9" square or a little bigger. Smooth down stew with back of spoon. Spread carrot mash evenly on top. Cover with foil and bake 45 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with Walnut-Parsley Topping.
- * Most bean varieties would work, either cooked or canned. ** I used oil-packed; dry-packed sundried tomatoes might need to be soaked in a little boiling water to soften. *** Stew and mash can be made up to 24 hours ahead and stored covered in the refrigerator; bring to room temp. before assembling and baking. Walnut-Parsley Topping should be made fresh.
Carrot Mash with Walnut-Parsley Topping
- 4 cups chopped carrots (about 7 or 8 carrots)
- 1 cup orange juice
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/4 cup walnut oil
- 3/4 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1/2 cup toasted walnuts, chopped fine
- 3-4 tablespoons chopped parsley
- zest of 1 lemon
- Heat orange juice and chopped carrots in a saucepan with lemon juice, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 cup water. Bring to a low simmer over medium heat and cook until soft and there is little liquid left, about 30 minutes; allow to cool, then blend in food processor (or blender) with walnut oil. Slowly add 1/4 cup or so water until the consistency of firm mashed potatoes. The texture should still have a little grit to it, but the last baking will soften that.
- Layer carrot mash over bean stew as described in recipe above.
- Blend remaining 1/4 tsp. salt with parsley, walnuts and lemon zest and reserve for garnishing baked pie.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Pub Food
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Carrot Recipe