Do you love white?
You know: rice, potatoes, pasta, bread, flour, bechamel (mmm, bechamel…)
Well, you don’t need me to tell you. We’ve all heard we need to eat less white. (Naturally) colorful foods typically have more of the good stuff: vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, flavonoids, and fiber. Unfortunately, DayGlo-orange Kraft Mac doesn’t count as the right kind of colorful. Michael Pollan tells us; the federal government tells us—but it’s hard to apply all this good advice.
Lately, I’ve been making a concerted effort to put more color on our plates. Sometimes this means buying some flourescent produce and rushing home to ask Chef Google what the heck I can do with it. That’s fun, in a kind of Iron-Chef-challenge way. But sometimes, it’s just easier to work the good stuff into recipes I already make.
Which explains this chicken shepherd’s pie with spinach and sweet potato mash. It’s got tons of the good stuff bathed in a little cream to help it go down with a smile.
Because a little white is alright.
To be honest, I like my revamped version better than the original. The faintly sweet topping plays off the creamy, herb-spiked base really nicely. And the chicken is considerably lighter than beef or lamb. I hope you enjoy my update to the classic. Dig in!
-1 lg. sweet potato or yam
-3 med. or 5 sm. white potatoes (enough to weigh 1 1/2 lbs. together with the sweet potato)
-1 Tbsp. butter
-1 Tbsp. herbed cream cheese (I used porcini-mushroom flavored) or sour cream
-1/4-1/2 c. milk, as needed
-salt and pepper, to taste
Peel and cube all the potatoes and boil in a medium pot of salted water until tender. Drain and place in a medium bowl. Set aside the pot for later use.
Whip together the potatoes, butter, cream cheese (or sour cream), seasoning, and as little milk as needed to form a thick but spreadable consistency.
Preheat the oven to 425F.