A dish of cooked ground or diced meat (traditionally lamb or mutton) mixed with gravy (and sometimes vegetables) and topped with mashed potatoes. The pie is then baked until the mixture is hot and the potato "crust" browns. Shepherd's pie was originally created as an economical way to use leftovers from the ubiquitous "Sunday roast."
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.