Lentil Shepherd’s Pie With Sweet Potato Crust

Serves 50

4 lbs lentils, rinsed
2 bunches of kale (or spinach), rinsed, stemmed and finely chopped
4 cups sweet peas
8-10 cloves garlic, minced
10 carrots, peeled and coin cut
2 onions, chopped
8 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
8 lbs white potatoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup flour
3 sticks butter, divided
7 cups milk, divided
3 tbl poultry seasoning
salt and pepper
fresh grated Parmesan

Potato Crust:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and toss potatoes in.  Cook until fork tender. Drain and return to large pot.  Mash 1 stick butter, 1 tbl salt and a splash of milk.  Mash until desired consistency.

Filling:

Cover lentils in pot with water and bring to boil. Stir, reduce to simmer, cover and cook until soft (but not mushy), about 15 minutes. When lentils are finished cooking, transfer them to 3 full size aluminum catering pans. In the same pan the lentils were cooked in, add a splash of olive oil, onion, carrot. Saute until onion is translucent and carrot is soft.  Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Distribute the onion/carrot/garlic mixture to the lentil dishes, along with finely chopped kale and peas. Stir in 1 Tbl of poultry seasoning, dash of salt and pepper. In that same saucepan, melt remaining butter. Add flour all at once and whisk vigorously. Slowly pour remaining milk in the butter/flour mixture, whisking continually. Let mixture thicken and start to brown (but not burn!). Divide sauce over lentil/veggie mixture and gently stir. Spoon the potato mixture over the lentils, leveling out as you go. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top and bake at 350 for 30 minutes until top is crisp and cheese is melted.

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