Shepherd's pie with sweet potatoes, lentils and tempeh
This classic dish becomes even more tasty when "vegan-ized"! It's full of protein from both tempeh and lentils, which also add a great texture to the dish. Tempeh's nutty flavour makes it an excellent meat alternative, and bonus: it's got tons of easily digestible vegetable protein. While we often slice it into strips or chunks to cook it, in this recipe it's crumbled up to make the base of the shepherd's pie. You can boil it for several minutes before crumbling, or marinate it - it'll help make it softer and the tempeh will more easily absorb flavour afterwards. The tempeh and lentil layer is this recipe is topped with fresh, tasty corn. The finishing touch is the rich, creamy sweet potato layer. If you're feeling like taking this comfort food to the next level, try topping it with a layer of vegan parmesan, which we have a recipe for on the site - all you need is nuts, nutritional yeast, and salt!
Peel and cut the sweet potatoes in 4. Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Cook the sweet potatoes for about 20 minutes, drain, and mash into a purée with the nut milk, olive oil, salt and pepper. Set aside.
While the sweet potatoes are boiling, rise the lentils in cold water and put into a saucepan with three times their volume in water. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 to 25 minutes.
Cut the tempeh into cubes and crumble it. Chop the onion and garlic. In a frying pan or wok, heat a drizzle of vegetable oil and brown the onion and garlic for several minutes. Add the crumbled tempeh and cook for about 10 minutes, until the tempeh is well done. Add the cooked lentils, the thyme and the soy sauce. Mix well. Season to taste.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the lentil-tempeh mix in a large baking dish and top with a layer of corn. Spread the sweet potato purée evenly over top. Bake for 20 minutes and serve with a fresh green salad.
Emilie creates healthy, and tasty recipes for PRANA as well as her own blog, Murmures. Her passion lies in the creation of recipes - from the chopping and stirring to the presentation and styling of her dishes.