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Oyster-Mushroom Shepherd's Pie

A delectable vegetarian dish that brings together the great tastes of homemade vegetarian gravy, meaty oyster-mushrooms, fresh-frozen peas and mashed potatoes.

Makes two pies.

Everything you'll need:
-Vegetable stock to make veggie gravy
-2 frozen pie crust (or homemade ones)
-1 pound fresh oyster mushrooms
-1 pound fresh-frozen green peas
-2 cups pearl onions (optional)
-2 cups chopped carrots (optional)
-4 to 5 cups mashed potatoes
-2 beaten eggs

For the gravy:
2 cups vegetable stock
1 large onion
2 T. butter
3 T. flour

In a large skillet over medium heat cook the chopped onion in a little butter and olive oil until slightly burnt. Add to your pot of vegetable stock and simmer 15 minutes. Drain. This process gives the stock a dark color and deeper taste.

In a sauce pan over medium heat, melt 2 T. butter and stir in 3 T. flour. Stir the rue for a few minutes to cook out the taste of flour. Remove from heat until bubbles subside and then whisk in 2 cups of hot vegetable stock. Return to heat and cook, stirring constantly, until near boiling point and gravy is thick and bubbly. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 and bake the pie shells for five minutes.

For the pie filling, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and saute first the carrots and onions for 5 minutes, then add the mushrooms (torn into bite-size pieces) and then the peas. Feel free to add some of your veggie stock to help steam the veggies if mixture seems dry to you. Drain veggies and stir in the veggie gravy.

Beat two eggs and mix into your mashed potatoes.

Assemble pies: fill 3/4 full with vegetable and gravy filling and top with mashed potatoes, sealing the filling in.

Bake pies at 350 for 45 minutes, brushing the tops with butter for the last 10. Remove from oven and cool slightly. Sprinkle with fresh, chopped parsley and cracked pepper, if desired. Serve with gravy on the side.

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