By David Bonom

Tribune Content Agency

Chicken & Mushroom Shepherd’s Pie

Serves 6

Preparation time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

For the topping

2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled if desired and cut into 1-inch chunks

1/2 cup low-fat milk

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

For the filling

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

8 ounces cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, halved and sliced

1 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried

1/2 teaspoon salt, divided

1/2 cup dry sherry

1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth or homemade chicken stock

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups cubed cooked chicken (1/2-inch; about 10 ounces)

1 cup frozen peas and carrots

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

To prepare topping: Place potatoes in a large saucepan, and add cold water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, 12 to 14 minutes. Drain and return the potatoes to the pan. Add milk, 2 tablespoons oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt; mash.

Preheat oven to 400 F. Coat an 8-inch-square pan or similar 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray.

To prepare filling: Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, thyme and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms are starting to brown, 7 to 9 minutes. Pour in sherry and cook, stirring, until almost evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes.

Whisk broth (or stock) and flour in a bowl. Add to the pan and cook, stirring, until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in chicken, peas and carrots, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Transfer to the prepared baking dish. Spread the mashed potatoes on top.

Place the baking dish on a baking sheet. Bake until the potatoes are browned in spots and the filling is bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes.

Recipe notes: Prepare filling (Step 3), and refrigerate for up to one day. Reheat before topping and baking. Use dry sherry instead of “cooking sherry” in recipes calling for sherry. It adds depth of flavor to sauces, soups and stews without adding extra salt that’s in cooking sherry.

The creamy chicken filling is spiked with sherry and the potatoes are mashed with olive oil in this healthy shepherd’s pie recipe. To make individual pies, use six 10-ounce ramekins. Serve with a green salad with balsamic vinaigrette and crusty bread.

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