This St. Patrick’s Day, start the festivities will all the elements of a tasty meal in one pie.

Though not quite traditional Irish fare, this recipe is simple and tasty enough for any weeknight meal. It only takes about 30 minutes to prepare.

The best thing about Shepherd’s Pie is that it’s infinitely customizable. No lamb? Use hamburger. Leftover veggies or too many mashed potatoes in the fridge? Chuck them in. Those last two tablespoons of tomato paste at the bottom of the can? Go for it. You can even top the whole pie with grated cheese or breadcrumbs for a bit more texture.

You’ll need:

1 pound potatoes, such as russet, peeled and cubed

2 tablespoons sour cream

1 large egg yolk

1/2 cup cream, for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth

Salt and black pepper

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound ground beef or ground lamb

2 cups vegetables: these can be anything from a bag of frozen vegetables to fresh carrots, peas, celery and/or onion.

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup beef stock or broth

1 tablespoon Worcestershire

Parsley, for garnish

Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain potatoes and combine them with sour cream, egg yolk and cream. Mash until potatoes are almost smooth.

While potatoes boil, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil to hot pan with beef or lamb. Season meat with salt and pepper. Brown and crumble meat for 3 or 4 minutes. Whisk together beef broth and Worcestershire sauce. Add vegetables and broth to meat and cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Once vegetables are nearly cooked through, add flour and stir so no lumps remain.

Preheat broiler to high. Fill a small rectangular casserole with meat and vegetable mixture. Spoon potatoes over meat evenly. Broil 6 to 8 inches from the heat until potatoes are evenly browned. Top casserole dish with chopped parsley and serve.

Contact Cheyenne Derksen Schroeder by email at or follow her on Twitter at @MacSentinel.