Steal This Recipe® Ski Country Shepherd’s Pie | X Café, Telluride

March 15, 2012

‘Stolen with permission’ from Chef Jake Linzinmeir of X Café in Telluride, Colorado, this is Shepherd’s Pie with a few twists

‘Stolen with permission’ from X Café, Telluride’s Jake Linzinmeir, this is Shepherd’s Pie with a few twists – you won't see cream of chicken soup or corn flakes in any traditional recipe, but then Jake's not known for traditional recipes – another favorite being a potato chip encrusted burger – yum!

About the chef: Indiana-born Jake Linzinmeir knew he wanted to be in the restaurant business since he was 16 –and graduated from the renowned School of Hotel & Restaurant Administration at Cornell University in 1992. From there, because he always had a passion for the Colorado Rockies, he went on to intern at the historic Hotel Jerome in Aspen.

Linzinmeir then took a job at the Excelsior Café in Telluride, where he rapidly advanced to Chef de Cuisine and, at age 22, purchased the restaurant with partner Elaine Palminteri, a Cornell classmate. Jake has had the advantage of spending most of his career in ski resorts giving him the full understanding of the business model needed to succeed whether with an upscale ski town restaurant, a slope side café or the world's most exclusive private mountain top lodge. He and his partners have gone on to open additional venues in the resort city, including the popular seafood and steak restaurant; Blue Point Grill, and its adjoining Noir Bar, as well as Wildflour Cooking Company – an acclaimed local bakery and bistro.

Several years ago, Jake took a year off to travel to Italy and serve as Sous Chef at Ristorante Le Calandre, a Michelin three-star restaurant near Venice, where he collaborated with young Italian super chef Massimiliano Alajmo. Although Linzinmeir is known for his menus combining inventive American fare with comfort food favorites, the sophisticated techniques and global perspective he acquired at Le Calandre are continuous influences in his kitchen.

As might be expected, Jake is an accomplished skier, mountain climber and is also a member of the Telluride Search and Rescue Team.

X Café
250 W San Juan Ave
CO 81435
970 728 8887

Ski Country Shepherd's Pie is served at X Café for $8.95.

This recipe yields 6 large restaurant servings – the recipe has been halved and can easily be doubled for large groups or leftovers!

Ski Country Shepherd's Pie Dark Beer Lamb Stew Ingredients:
2 pounds American Lamb, 1/2-inch dice
1 tablespoons vegetable oil or olive oil
11/2 large carrots, diced
1/4 large bunch celery, chopped
1 pounds pearl onions, whole
3 cups dark beer
1/2 cup tomato paste
5 cups lamb stock
6 1/2 cups chicken stock
21/2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1/8 cup fresh thyme, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Ski Country Shepherd's Pie Colorado Ranch Potatoes Ingredients:
3 Yukon gold potatoes, rinsed, drained, shredded
4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
21/2 ounces cream of chicken soup
2 ounces crème fraiche
Salt and pepper to taste
Corn flakes as needed
21/2 ounces butter

Steal This Recipe® Step by Step Instructions for the Dark Beer Lamb Stew:
In large pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat.
Add the lamb and brown, stirring occasionally. Remove lamb and drain.
Add the carrots, celery and onions to the pan; sauté until onions are translucent.
Deglaze the pan with the dark beer.
Stir in the tomato paste, bring to a slow boil.
Add the lamb stock, chicken stock, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper and sugar.
Reduce the heat and simmer, reducing liquid by one-third.

Steal This Recipe® Step by Step Instructions for the Colorado Ranch Potatoes:
In bowl mix the potatoes with the cheese, soup, crème fraiche, salt and pepper.
Spread into a 2" hotel half pan or casserole dish.
Cover with layer of corn flakes and dot with butter.
Bake 35 to 45 minutes at 325ºF.
Cool or reserve warm if using immediately.
Steal This Recipe® Step by Step Instructions to assemble the Shepherd's Pie:
Heat stew to desired temperature, place in oven-proof bowl.
Cut portion of potatoes to cover dish and place over stew.
Put back in oven or place under broiler to warm.
Serve when ready.