Time: 1 hour || Active time: 30 minutes
Who among us doesn’t love mashed potatoes? Add something spicy, savory and stewy bubbling underneath and it pretty much takes that love over the top and into creepy obsession territory.
Since I’m about to make my first ever foray into the Lone Star State at next weekend’s Texas VegFest in Austin, I was feeling kinda’ Tex-Mex this week. Enter tamale pie! Well, almost. I realized that I was too low on my masa harina to execute a real tamale pie, but what I lacked in corn flour I made up for in potatoes. And thus the Tamale Shepherd’s Pie was born!
A creamy layer of lime-kissed mashed red potatoes over a succulent and spicy stew of black beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, poblano peppers and corn, with a few of the usual southwestern flavors thrown in. To give it true tamale flavor, a few handfuls of crumbled up tortilla chips tossed into the stew do the trick. It’s the perfect meal for these rainy months at the beginning of Spring. I love how the red potatoes look on top, adding flecks of pretty blush. It makes a ton, too, and leftovers taste just as good.
To get this done quickly, boil the potatoes first. Then begin the stew. Both components should come together within half an hour and then you just bake and wait. You can adjust the spice level to your liking by (obviously) adjusting the hot sauce and red pepper flakes. As is, I’d say it’s a low-medium spicy. Don’t forget to preheat the oven right about when you add the tomatoes and corn to the stew, that way everything is ready to go.
OK everyone, enjoy and I’ll see you in Texas!
For the mashed potato layer:
2 1/2 lbs unpeeled red potatoes, cut into big chunks (1 1/2 inches or so)
1/2 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk, at room temperature
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 scant teaspoon grated lime zest
3/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
For the stew:
2 tablespoons olive oil (plus extra)
1 onion, diced medium
1 poblano pepper, seeded, diced medium
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz mushrooms, cut in half and sliced 1/4 inch thick or so
1 cup lightly packed cilantro, chopped
1 1/4 lbs plum tomatoes (about 6), chopped
1/2 cup corn (fresh or frozen)
1/4 cup dry red wine
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 ounces tortilla chips (about 4 good-sized handfuls)
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons Frank’s red hot hot sauce (plus extra for serving)
3 cups cooked black beans (2 15 oz cans rinsed and drained)
I garnished with: Hot red chilis, fresh cilantro and lime slices
Place potatoes in a pot and submerge in salted water. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower heat to simmer and cook for about 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
Drain potatoes and immediately transfer them back into the pot. It’s important to do this while everything is still hot. Give them a quick preliminary mash, then add the milk, olive oil, lime zest and salt. Mash until creamy, taste for salt, then cover and set aside. (Note: I usually add black pepper, but decided not to here so that the lime really shines through. If you feel naked without it, though, go ahead and add some.)
To prepare the stew:
Preheat a large, heavy bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Saute onion and pepper in olive oil and a pinch of salt, until peppers are softened, about 10 minutes. In the meantime prep all your other ingredients.
Add garlic and saute until fragrant, 30 seconds or so. Add mushrooms and cilantro and cook until the mushrooms have released a lot of moisture, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, corn, wine, salt, cumin and red pepper flakes. Turn heat up and cover the pan, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes. The tomatoes should break down and become saucy (if corn was frozen it may take a bit longer.)
Now take the tortilla chips and crush them into fine crumbs with your hands. It’s ok if there are a few bigger pieces, but aim for crumbs. Add them to the stew and mix well. Since tortillas can be salty, wait until they’re added to taste for salt. Mix in the lime juice and hot sauce, then fold in the black beans and heat through. Now taste for salt and seasonings.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a deep 11×13 casserole (cooking spray works just fine). Transfer the stew to the casserole and even it out with a spatula. Add the potatoes in dollops, and spread it into an even layer.
Place in oven and bake for about 25 minutes, until potatoes are lightly browned. Stick under the broiler for a minute or two just in case the browning isn’t happening. Serve hot garnished with cilantro, chili peppers and lime.
I just ate this and it tastes great!
I mean….. it tasted great….. when I ate it…. just a few minutes ago… and it will probably taste great when I eat it later.
Im pretty new to cooking and not much experience cooking with wine. Ill be making this tonight but what’s a good dry red wine to use with this…On hand I do have White Zinfandel, Zinfandel, and Rose. OUt of all these I think Zinfandel is the only dry. Any better recommendations to go with this spicy veggie stew? I also like to double up on spices alot on recipes alot.
Isa, I have to say, hands down, this is a winner. We had a veg meet up group in Albuquerque last night and I was perusing the PPK website and this was the lead page, and I thought, “self, that’s very southwest sounding” so I purchased what I didn’t have at home and proceeded to put it all together. I just made slight variations. Instead of tortillas chips, I actually used corn tortillas, probably about six of them (didn’t actually count) cut them into strips and then cut the strips into small pieces. Along with the lime in the potatoes I add a smidge of garlic powder and some habenero seasoning. AMAZING. I am thinking the next time, I may add some homiony instead of corn, posole is such a southwest flavor. Well, needless to say, we set the dish down on the serving table and it was gone in 15 minutes! Not a crumb left in the pan. Thank you so much my vegan idol!!
@ Sandra, I usually have my husband pick the wine, so he found “Casillero del Diablo” a Cabernet Sauvignon, it’s from Chile, and we found it Albertson’s so I am sure most places that sell wine may carry this. It was definitely a good choice.
PS Isa, I hope something happens in Albuquerque and soon. Would love to meet you whether at event or one of the eateries around here! Have fun in Texas!
“Who among us doesn’t love mashed potatoes?”
That would be me. After ~20 years of having mashed potatoes with dinner very nearly every night, I do not like mashed potatoes anymore. I am fine with just about any other potato-y goodness and potatoes in general but not mashed.
I have this in the oven right now! Making it anticipation of my bf coming home from being gone for 2 months. It smells delicious and I cannot wait to eat it. I was drooling over the recipe for the past few days! Thanks again for the amazing recipes, don’t know what I would do without your cookbooks!
This was awesome! Made subs…sweet potatoes, pinto beans, jalepenos….and zucchini for mushrooms …..so good
Ooooh Michelle, I am going to have to try some of your subs!!! Sounds yummy also!!
Such a comforting and delicious meal! Thanks for sharing!
@ Alex – try caulipots then. I was never that big a fan of mashed potatoes, but I find caulipots genuinely exciting. (wait, I find two mashed vegetables exciting? Soon I’ll be playing Bingo…)
Anyway, I’m making this tomorrow, really looking forward to it. I made a Tamale Pie a few months ago using one of Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s recipes, and it was fantastic – this looks like it’ll be even better.
I made this and it tasted wonderful! Only complaint is that my potatoes were a bit dry. I guess I needed to add more milk?
This. Is bad@ss delicious. You’re an inspriation in the kitchen.
I made this tonight. Absolutely delicious!
I made this two nights ago. It was really fantastic. The lime in the potatoes-GREAT. I substituted two jalapenos (deseeded and deveined) for the poblano since our lame local supermarket didn’t carry the latter, and used only 1/4 tsp of the red pepper flakes as my kids yell if anything’s got more than mild heat. Came out great!!!!
this was SO YUMMYY!!! 🙂 thank you for your delicious recipes !
Just made this. Sometimes I have trouble with the recipes but this one turned out perfect. Substituted an anaheim for the poblano and canned tomatoes for fresh. ALso added some cherry tomatoes. The lime didn’t come through as well as I’d hoped, though.
Just made this, was awesome. if you’re looking to save on clean up a bit, just start the stew in a dutch oven, drop the mashed potatoes on top before throwing in the oven. 1 less pot to clean, plus it’s cast iron, so it makes it real texy-mexy-sexy.
I loved this dish…except for the potatoes. The flavors were exactly what I remember tamale pie to taste like (haven’t had it in years). So delicious, just the right amount of spicy-ness. The potatoes, while delicious (with the hint of lime flavor), distracted me from the hearty stew beneath. Next time I make this (and I definitely will), I will use a corn meal topping instead.
We had this for dinner tonight and it was great, although a bit dry. I noticed that it wasn’t as moist as I thought it should be before putting it in the oven and should’ve corrected it then. But dinner was late, and I was rushing to get it on the table before the kids threw fits, so I didn’t adjust. Still, it was tasty. As a bonus, I cooked up the whole thing (except for boiling/mashing the potatoes) in my cast iron skillet – stovetop to oven and saved dirtying a dish. I love it when I can do that! (It’s the small things…)
This was a big hit–I served it as a stew with cilantro lime quinoa on the side and your charbroiled butternut rounds. Super yum!
amazing! I used fire roasted organic canned tomatoes
This was brilliant!!!!! We (5 kids, me and hubby, brother) all loved it! The lime potatoes were genius!! Hello!!! Thank you a bajillion!!! I trippled the recipe!!!! Bwahahaha! Leftovers!
Alex, I’m sure you could cook the potatoes so they still hold shape, then slice them and place them in rows all over the stew, drizzle with wee bit of veg oil and they should crust up and brown for anew type topping! OR use sweet potato which is yummy mashed for a topping of a cottage pie.
This was excellent. Thank you!
Looks excellent!! I also wanted to lick the screen as I’m on day 22 of my 30-40 juice cleanse. Always looking for inspiration for meals to fix my family. Thank you!!
I tried this recipe with minor modification. I live in Texas and like spicy. I added jalapenos to the poblano dice, doubled the comino, and used Valentina hot sauce (valentina sauce is hotter than franks and has an ancho chili / chili powder flavor). I must say this is an outstanding dish, and the lime potatoes are out of this world, they will have a life of their own in my kitchen. Kudos to IsaChandra for another ‘out of the park’ dish. 9 months vegan, 13 months vegetarian and loving it. (My first veggie cookbook was “Appetite for Reduction”.)
with sincere thanks,
This look SO delicious! The other night I veganed up lasagne (spicy cauliflower puree for the cheese) and you know what? It was actually really good. Can’t wait to try this one 🙂
I made this last night and it was FANTASTIC!!! I will certainly be making this in the future, thank you so much for the recipe!
Tastes even better the day after! Thanks so much Isa 🙂 xxxx
Another winner! I added some Mexican chili powder also.
Yum Yum Yum! I think I’m going to make this with my mashed yucca recipe on top — I just add caramelized onions and lime to steamed yucca that’s been through a potato ricer, and mash it up until it’s almost kind of… stretchy? Can’t wait, but it’s going to have to, because I already have a meal plan from ppk through the next week and a half!
Colleen in MA
I made this and my carnivore husband and I loved it. Only adjustments I made were no hot sauce or red wine and the recipe still yielded a very flavorful dish. The leftovers that were stuck in the fridge are yummy too. Doing the potatoes the same time as the base is definitely a time-saver. And the kitchen smelled amazing!
Made this for dinner last week and it was a HUGE hit! Shared it with several non-vegan friends and answered the, “What do you eat if you’re vegan?” question. They couldn’t believe how much they liked “vegan” food, and I loved the layers of flavor. Definitely something I’ll make again and again! Thanks!
Can’t wait to try this! Looks delicious. Thank you Thank you Thank you!
This was absolutely amazing!! I added fresh (with seeds) serrano peppers, avocado and tons of lime juice for garnish. Truly amazing! Delicious and so healthy.
This was my first time making a vegan meal. It. Was. *Amazing!!!* I am so happy I found this site -I can’t wait to make vegan meals a part of my everyday routine. Thanks!!!
I made this in Germany without cilantro (couldn’t find it anywhere this time of year) and with 2 mystery peppers instead of the poblano: came out marvelous as always!!! Thank you Isa!
YOU ARE DA BEST. much luv.
Caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy
oh my goodness that looks so delicious! i love how its studded with limes! yum!
this was DELICIOUS!!!!
This was really really good. I didn’t have any corn and substituted some diced zucchini and fresh mango. The best surprise was the lime potatoes. I wasn’t sure what to expect since I LOVE traditional style mashed potatoes but this really made it special!
Yummy! This would be soooo delicious. I shall try it 🙂
Goodness. I think I just love this. Good you make more Ireland-related things, please?