RECIPE – Deviled Shepherds Pie (AKA Demon Spawn)

Halloween is coming up – which is the perfect time of year to make distasteful/grotesque recipes.

It’s never too early to wreak your Halloween havoc, so found a demon baby, slaughtered it & thought I’d serve it up to some unsuspecting guests – brains and guts included.

I was invited to an event which was usually potluck and I thought to myself that this would be the perfect chance to develop a new recipe – sort of like a practice run for Halloween (plus, if the hostess doesn’t specifically say you cannot bring a demon spawn, then she can’t be unhappy about it if you do)

If you love baby demons, you best avert your gaze now

RIP – delicious demon spawn

What is it?

It’s a sort of shepherds pie because it is mash on top of some veggies – this version is not quite vegetarian (brains had some beef stock in it) but is easily adapted to cater for vegetarians.
Note: There were 2 vegetarians that had to tuck into this – fortunately, they could eat everything but the brains so they happily munched on the guts & torso

What is it exactly?

Skin – multimash (mashed potato, sweet potato and pumpkin)

Brains – Tomato filled with chunky mushroom gravy

Torso & guts – Green Capsicum filled with spicy, home-made tomato salsa

Veins – spring onions filled with tomato ketchup

Concept

How did I come up with this idea? I didn’t really, this was a collaborative effort on how best to create an edible demon spawn with a mischievous friend of mine. We also had a bit of inspiration from this blog.

There were a few different possibilities that we were tossing around, like home-made pigs in a blanket shaped into a demon spawn with multicoloured blood (ketchup, mustard & relish). We also tossed up whether or not to have a skeleton, perhaps have a more graphically killed spawn with sausage intestines spewing out. Or maybe a sweet option like red velvet cake or some sort of fondant for the head – the possibilities were endless.

It had to look good, but more importantly, it had to taste fantastic.

In the end, it was time that limited our imagination – we only had a few hours to collaborate and build our Frankenstein Junior.

Concept art of demon spawn

Vegetables for the head & body, filled with goodness & covered in sculped mash. I also wanted some blood to splatter from the critter when it was sliced so I wanted to incorporate some veins.

With that, our demon baby was born.

Ingredients:

Multimash skin

  • Similar quantities of potatoes, sweet potatoes and butternut squash (we used roughly 500g of each for our concoction) – peeled & diced into large pieces
  • 100g butter – or more according to preference
  • 50ml milk – or more according to preference
  • Salt & pepper to season

Brains

  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1tsp olive oil
  • 1/3 diced onion
  • 1x clove garlic – crushed
  • 2 large mushrooms diced
  • 50ml Beef stock
  • 50 ml Red Wine

Veins

  • 2x Thick pieces of spring onion
  • Tomato ketchup

Guts

Note: This was a super hot salsa (as it had to compete with all that mash). It also had a deceptively mild smell – I haven’t included quantities for the chillies as that’s up to your personal preference – but I recommend you add a tiny bit & taste it before you add more – taste it constantly

  • 1 capsicum
  • 1tsp olive oil
  • Half diced red onion
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Tabasco/chilli sauce
  • Dried chillies/chilli powder
  • 1 can tinned tomatoes
  • 1tsp chopped dill
  • 1tsp chopped parsley

Decoration

  • 2 sculpted carrot tips (for devil horns) – blanched if you want them to be less crunchy
  • flat mountain bread (as a blanket) & for easier eating

Method:

Multimash skin

  1. Put the pieces of potatoes, sweet potatoes and pumpkins in pots of salted water and bring to the boil
    Note: We weren’t sure if the pumpkin would cook at the same rate as the potatoes, so we put them in a different pot
  2. Once veggies are soft, drain, then mix together & mash them up
  3. Add pieces of butter & mix in
  4. Add in the milk
    Note: Most people recommend the milk be hot when you add it
  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper & refrigerate until needed

Multimash – gorgeous colour and wonderful creamy flavour

Note: I don’t know how I’ll go back to normal mash now that I’ve had multimash

Brains

In order to make our tiny brain stand out from all the mash, we needed to make it more intensely flavoured than usual mushroom gravy.

  1. Melt butter in a pan with the olive oil
  2. Cook onions & garlic until softened slightly
  3. Add the diced mushrooms with a pinch of salt to draw out the moisture & keep stirring
  4. Once moisture has evaporated, add the beef stock & the wine
  5. Bring to the boil, then lower to a simmer to reduce
  6. Reduce, stirring frequently, until most of the liquid is gone – you want your brains to be solid in the tomato cavity
  7. Core out a tomato, fill it with brains – make sure to compact the brains inside & fridge until needed

Veins

Note: These didn’t work as well as I thought they would for a few reasons, the ketchup was too viscous so it didn’t ooze out of the demon spawn; also, I placed them at the bottom of critter, so they didn’t cut when the demon was sliced or any cut was absorbed by the spilling of red guts

I would say you can go without veins, but if you decide to use it – use a less viscous liquid or water down your ketchup, place it on top of your veggie torso and colour it differently to the spilling guts salsa

  1. Cut off the root & tip of your spring onion
  2. Stick the nozzle of a ketchup bottle into the fatter end of a spring onion and fill it up with ketchup
  3. Wrap in clingfilm & store in the freezer to harden up

Torso

  1. Heat oil in a pan, then add the onions & garlic
  2. Stir until slightly softened, then add your canned tomatoes & simmer
  3. Once that’s warmed through, add your chilli mix
  4. Taste it & and some more chillies if you want more bite
  5. Add chopped parsley & dill
  6. Cut off the stem of a capsicum & hollow out the insides, removing the white membranes & all the seeds
  7. Pack your capsicum with salsa & fridge until needed

Assembling

  1. Stopper your torso (capsicum) with mash
  2. Place some mash on your base and position your head and torso on it
  3. If you’re using veins, place them on top of your base
  4. Cover everything in mash in the shape you want
  5. Sculpt your mash – use a toothpick to draw finger lines/eye creases
    Note: Your mash needs to be cold to do this properly
  6. Attach your devil horns
  7. Cover with your mountain bread blanket as the revealing of it is part of the show
  8. Grab the biggest knife you can find and you’re ready to slaughter

There were a lot of horrified gasps at the unveiling – although 1 person had cottoned on before the unveiling and was giggling gleefully in a corner.

Time to get the hostess to have at it with a cleaver – it took a bit of encouraging but she finally let herself attack our masterpiece with relish.

First she split the thing in half – just to make sure the demon was dead.

Next, the hostess decided to scalp the critter as she was a zombie in a former life and wanted to get at some brains. She felt a bit of resistance from the tomato and wondered what that could be.

“It’s the baby’s skull,” cried my mischievous friend.

The hostess made a funny face then with a bit of encouragement from those circled ravenously, forcefully brought down the cleaver and scalped the darn thing.

Feeling exhausted from playing executioner, the hostess took a break from serving duties and a psychotic axe-murderer took up her place instead, gleefully hacking the demon to bits.

Bits of brains, guts and flesh on some mountain bread = one awesome shepherds pie.

I may have been permanently banned from all future parties by the hostess but it was worth it. The mash is definitely something I would make a gain though – the combination of potato, sweet potato and pumpkin was AMAZING.

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One Response to “RECIPE – Deviled Shepherds Pie (AKA Demon Spawn)”

  1. Ed Watkinson Says:

    Hi,

    Hope you are well.

    I’m working on behalf of Betta Living to promote a Vegetarian recipe competition they are currently running.

    Whilst searching Google for potential promotional partners I spotted this recipe on your site: https://monitormunching.wordpress.com/2011/08/26/recipe-deviled-shepherds-pie-aka-demon-spawn/

    The recipe looks really good and I was wondering if you’d be interested in entering it into the competition? There is a £750 first prize and £25o runners up prize so well worth entering. As your in the USA we can easily convert this to dollars as the prize.

    As you’ve already done a blog post about your recipe all you’d need to do is tweek the copy to mention the competition and hashtag and submit the entry. Its totally free to enter and would only take a couple of mins to enter.

    Here are some posts from the nominated judges:
    http://www.frugalfamily.co.uk/2014/04/colourful-quick-and-easy-vegetable-risotto.html
    http://babybudgeting.co.uk/win-a-750-gift-voucher-vegetarian-recipe/

    You can find out full info about the competition and the email address to submit your entry too here: http://www.bettaliving.co.uk/blog/articles/2014/04/vegetarian-recipe-competition/

    Hopefully you’ll win the prize! It’s not much effort so do please enter :o)

    Thanks

    Ed.

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