November 23, 2011
I'm an obsessive Thanksgiving cook. There, I said it. It's part pain and part pleasure, but even with the agony that can at times come with preparing this annual feast, at least it all has a purpose: family togetherness and full bellies!
I'm also an obsessive Thanksgiving eater -- it doesn't have to be the fourth Thursday in November for me either. Frequently in the middle of summer I will go to a local diner for their Thanksgiving platter. That's how much I love this meal. So, when it comes to the actual day that I'm going to prepare it at home for my whole family, I tend to go a little overboard and make two of everything: two brined turkeys, two dishes of mashed potatoes, two gravy boats....you get the drift. Without fail I always end up with enough left over to feed an army. The past few years I've made Potato Turkey Balls and Brazilian Turkey Casserole with the leftovers, which were both big hits with the troops, but this year I'm making Turkey Shepherd's Pie.
My Aunt made a mean Shepherd's Pie when I was a kid and my family always looked forward to it at our regular Sunday night dinners, so the idea of marrying Shepherd's Pie with Thanksgiving dinner seemed like a no-brainer to me. After cooking for days on end and needing (and truly deserving) a break, you have to try this delectable dish that perfectly puts to use all of your holiday leftovers!