Swiss-Style Shepherd’s Pie

Did you know there was a Swiss version of Shepherd’s Pie? I didn’t either…so I created one.
But isn’t authenticity important here? The original version of Shepherd’s Pie (actually called Cottage Pie during the mid-1700’s) is a dish with cooked lamb or mutton, mixed with onions and topped with mashed potatoes – sometimes also a bit of cheese – then baked. Given these ingredients, it would seem to me developing a vegan version while maintaining recipe authenticity is impossible.

And herein lies a problem facing many vegan cooks – what to call a veganized dish? When is that line of correctness crossed? Is an egg-less mayonnaise really a mayonnaise?

I thought about these issues when I first made this recipe. To me, I think looks and to a certain degree, taste override any authenticity issue. Personally, I really like notes of roasted eggplant (aubergine) mixed in with gently stewed onions and Swiss chard (there’s the Swiss connection by the way). The topping of really tasty potato puree brings the flavors to a new level of inexpensive comfort food – and isn’t that the point of the original recipe?

Yield: makes about 6-8 servings

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