Ah, holiday leftovers. If you host you get to have the good and bad scenario of a lot of leftover food crowding the fridge. Between Patrick’s beer and condiment collection, my food, kombucha, and small beer collection, we barely have room for extra food anyways, so it’s extra packed out now. Each reach is is precarious, so in an effort to do a little reducing, today’s dinner is going to be recycled (that sounds so gross in reference to food doesn’t it?) into a sheperd’s pie, the perfect fridge clearer and body warmer on a cool December day.

The best part about this is how flexible the recipe is to what you have leftover in your fridge.

Sheperd’s Pie with Tofu

serves four hungry people

Ingredients

  • at least 3 cups leftover mashed potatoes, reheated
  • 1/2 cake tofu
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • assorted vegetables, diced, that equal about 2 cups: peas, carrots, celery, kale, spinach, mushrooms, lima beans, corn
  • 3/4 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce (I used mushroom soy sauce)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worchestershire sauce
  • pinch of sage, salt, and pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350* F.
  2. Press water out well, then cube tofu into 1/2″ squares.
  3. Heat olive oil in a saute pan over medium high heat. Add tofu and saute until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add onions and garlic, saute for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add other 2 cups of vegetables, and saute for an additional 3-4 minutes.
  6. Add broth, sauces, and spices. Bring to a fast bubble but not boiling, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until most of the liquid evaporates.
  7. Meanwhile, oil a 9″ pie plate, and use a spatula to spread 1 cup of the heated mashed potatoes on the bottom of the pie plate.
  8. Use a slotted spoon to spread vegetable mixture on the mashed potatoes, making sure to distribute evenly.
  9. Sprinkle Parmesan evenly over the vegetables, then use a spatula to smooth the remaining potatoes over the top of the pie all the way to the edges, sealing in the pie. I had to use my hands here to help spread the potatoes evenly without getting vegetables mixed all up in them.
  10. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
  11. For an optional browner crust, after the initial baking, place under the broiler for no more than 5 minutes. Watch carefully to prevent burning.
  12. Remove from oven and let rest for up to 10 minutes before serving.

As much as I love holiday food, I’m going to be glad to gobble it down and get my palate overloaded with rich foods so that in the new year I’ll be ready for lighter, healthier foods (because that’s totally how it works, right?!). Like everyone else, I’ll be hitting the weights and yoga mat with more ferocity come January 2 and plan to take my meals for a spin too. I’ve spent some time lately gathering up clean vegetarian meals and snacks on Pinterest so that come next year, it’ll be easier than ever to stick with whole, unprocessed foods instead of just thinking about it.