It’s not a super grouper sandwich, but it’ll do

RECIPE:  Fancy Shepherd’s Pie with Mushroom Onion Gravy

“So, when you get to Florida, are you going to hire a charter fishing boat for a day?” says the random over-talker in the aisle seat that I’m shoved next to on the plane.  ’Hire’ a boat?  Oh my dear sir, you have no idea how spoiled I am.  And believe you me, I KNOW how spoiled I am.

I have a very small family.  No really.  I have one brother, one grandma, one Aunt and Uncle, and 2 cousins. One of my cousins is married to an amazing woman and they have two little girls who melt my heart.  That’s about it.  I don’t just love them all so dearly because there’s so few of them, I love them so much because they’re awesome.  If I had to pick family, I’d pick them.

I lost my mom 2 and a half years ago, but what I gained is a much closer relationship with my small Florida family.  My Aunt has stepped into the motherly freaking out if I don’t check in for a few days role, which I love more than I should at almost 33 years-old.  We visit them about once a year, and I think we haven’t worn out our welcome yet.  I think.  I hope.

Our trips out there are exhausting! I kind of suspect these weekends are the norm for Florida folks.  A day of fishing with fresh fish sandwiches on land after, boating to dinner, visiting theme parks, boating to an island for a day of sunning and drinking, fish fry, playing with the kids, more boating, eating homemade food, walking on the beach..  By the end of a trip out there, we’re tan, over-full of seafood, beer-logged, happy, and exhausted.

And yes, I may be overly obsessed with holding my tiny camera at arm’s length for self-portraits.  But look how good I am at it!  ha!

(Awkward food transition) Since my mom died, I’m not only more cry-y at every damn little thing (we have a strict rule in our house against any commercials with dogs in them), I also crave comfort food more.  There’s just something about some kinds of food that make you feel better.  Shepherd’s pie is one comfort food I love, but most traditional shepherd’s pie is kind of bland unless you load it up with cheese and broil the crap out of it.  So instead of doing that last week, I found a fancy, flavorful shepherd’s pie that’s on our do-over list for sure.


Am I starting to sound cocky if I say this was another 5 out of 5 full glasses of wine?  So either 1) I’m a really freaking good cook, 2) I have really low standards, or 3) I drink too much before I eat (I lurve you man! *drool*).  Either way.. I promise, this recipe doesn’t suck.  Kind of a nice welcome-home meal after being spoiled for a few days in Florida.  Doesn’t make me miss them any less…
Clickable recipe below.

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4 Responses to It’s not a super grouper sandwich, but it’ll do

  1. Manda says:

    I always want to make Shepherd’s Pie, but it has a bad reputation as being unhealthy. This is a great version! I love that you put unconventional veggies like peppers and zucchini. This is going on the to-make list!

    • Amanda N says:

      The original recipe called for heavy cream in the mashed potatoes, but I always just use skim. And the veggies MADE this dish! It was delicious!

  2. Kristen says:

    I think it is so great that you have a family, even if it is small, who cares about you so much! You are blessed, indeed! (and I love your SP’s! We all need to get in front of the camera more often!)

    • Amanda N says:

      I’m TERRIBLE about actually being in pictures. I’m so glad my husband got me a camera that is light enough so I can actually get it out far enough to do self portraits. :-)

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