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This dish takes a few steps but all are easy. I adapted this recipe from One Green Planet’s MASHED POTATO CASSEROLE WITH BROCCOLI AND A CAULIFLOWER GRAVY. I already had gravy in the freezer – leftover from my effort at poutine – seen just below. It was a leek & sage brown gravy & the recipe is HERE. When I end up with more of something than I need for a recipe – I often freeze the extra in Ziplock bags that I store flat – so they take up very little space in my freezer – as seen just below the poutine here. Just squeeze the air out & place it on top of a frozen pizza or some other flat item (a cookie sheet) until it freezes. It thawed quickly in the bag when placed under hot running water. You can use this gravy recipe or your own favorite one or the easiest one ever – HERE.
I wanted to use one of the vegan cheeses I recently bought from Soledad Goat Sanctuary…seen just above. It is creamy & has a tang sort of like sour cream & I thought it would add a nice layer of flavor & some richness to the potato level. You can use any soft cheese you like (cream cheese or whatever) or eliminate that ingredient with no real negative impact on this dish.
The nice thing about this dish is that it combines potato, broccoli & gravy in one decadent dish & it is easy to transport to a family or friend’s house as your vegan contribution to an otherwise potentially non-vegan meal. Meat eaters will love it & vegans could really get away with eating only this & not feeling too ripped off.
I used fresh broccoli but frozen will do – if you prefer it.
Deconstructed Vegan Shepherd’s Pie or Broccoli & Mashed Potato Casserole
2 large heads of broccoli – cut into florets
10 small red potatoes – cut into large chunks (I left skins on)
1 (14 oz) can of white beans – drained & rinsed
2 cups gravy of choice (two recipes are linked above)
4 oz soft vegan cheese (optional) OR 2-4 TBS vegan butter (or both if you are feeling decadent!)
2 garlic cloves
1 cup non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1/4 cup parsley
1 large rosemary sprig – leaves removed
small handful of fresh oregano
few sprigs of fresh thyme
2 TBS olive oil
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Make your gravy. Set aside.
Prepare the broccoli (try very hard not to overcook it). Steam or boil it for 2-3 minutes & drain it under cold water When cool enough to handle – chop it pretty small. (I take the steamed stalks & blend them into wet food for my dogs.) Chop the thyme & oregano & toss with the broccoli & 1 or 2 TBS olive oil. Season with S&P. Set aside.
Puree the beans and 1/2 cup almond milk in a high power (or regular) blender until smooth. (I REALLY love my Magic Bullet that I recently bought at Bed Bath & Beyond for $30 & I recommend them.) Add the rosemary & parsley & puree them into the bean mixture. Set aside.
Boil the potatoes and the garlic cloves until the potatoes are very soft. Drain. Return to the pan. Add the bean puree, soft cheese or butter (or both) & blend with a hand mixer or immersion blender. Add as much additional milk as you need to make them thick but creamy. Season with S&P.
I sprayed my casserole pan with cooking spray but that probably is not necessary.
Spread the potatoes on the bottom. Top with as much gravy as you like (I used about 2 cups – which was A LOT (though not too much for ME) – so add as much as feels right to you) & then the broccoli.
Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Let it rest a few minutes & serve!
If you have extra gravy, either put it on the table or freeze it.