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This recipe comes from the cookbook: High Plains: The Joy of Alberta Cuisine. I’ve been working with this wonderful cookbook for many years now and love all of the recipes that I’ve tried so far. At the back there is a helpful listing of local Alberta producers of dairy, meat and poultry, bison and wild game; as well as growers of fruits and vegetables, grains, pulse and seeds; and local bakeries. Here is an excerpt from their website:

Alberta is a province with a landscape that encompasses both the prairies and the spectacular Rocky Mountains, with all of the food traditions that these natural places entail, from bison and wild game to indigenous mushrooms, berries and crops like wheat, barley and corn. The bounty of this landscape has spawned a unique brand of regional Canadian cuisine, a style of cooking inspired by both the Native people who lived here first, the earliest ethnic groups to settle the West, and the creative modern cooks inspired by seasonal and regional ingredients. With profiles of some of Alberta’s top food producers and the sumptuous photography of award-winning photographer Mike Sturk, this book takes you on a culinary journey through the best of Western Canada.

Spiced Shepherd’s Pie with Root Vegetable Mash


1 tablespoon curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon canola oil

2 medium onions, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated

1 green apple, finely chopped or grated

1 pound lean ground beef or lamb

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 cup dried cranberries or sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

2 tablespoons mango chutney

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

3 tablespoons ketchup or tomato sauce

1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs

1 egg, beaten


3 large Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cubed

1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cubed

2 carrots, peeled and cubed

2 parsnips, peeled and cubed

1/4 cup butter

4 green onions, minced

1 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced

1/4 cup milk or whipping cream

salt and freshly ground pepper

Combine curry powder, cayenne pepper, turmeric, salt and pepper. Heat canola oil over medium heat and saute spices for 30 seonds until fragrant. Add onion, ginger and apple and saute until tender and beginning to brown.

Add ground meat to pan and cook until browned. Drain any excess oil. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Stir in remaining ingredients and spread in a shallow baking dish.

Meanwhile, combine potatoes, sweet potato, carrots and parsnips in a sauce pan. Cover with water, bring to a boil and simmer until tender, about 20-30 minutes. Drain well and mash together until fairly smooth (the mash can be a bit rustic and chunky).

Saute green onions and ginger in butter for 2-3 minutes. Stir into mashed vegetables with milk, salt and pepper. Pile on top of the filling in the baking dish and smooth the top.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree (F) oven for 45 minutes, or until filling is hot and topping is golden brown. Cool slightly before cutting into squares to serve. Serves 4 to 6.