Traditional Cornish Pastie
Many people are under the impression that a cornish pastie is made with puff pastry, minced beef and carrot. They are wrong. My grandmother is Cornish, and I would like to let you know how to make a REAL Cornish pastie.
Shortcrust pastry – for 1-2 pasties use 1/2 lb of flour, 4 oz of fat
diced poatoes – small cubes
diced onion (optional)
braising steak or stewing steak, diced
diced swede (optional)
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
dab of margerine
pinch of flour
Roll out the pastry. Use a bowl or plate to cut out a circle. Bear in mind that a pastie is very filling. Normally a dinner plate is about the right size.
Place the circle of pastry on to foil. Put the diced meat, potatoes, onion and swede into the centre of the pastry. you can check the amount of filling is correct by lifting the sides of the pastry up together.
The two edges should be able to meet at the top, with enough room to seal the pastie. mix up the filling up a bit, then arrange it into an oval shape, with space at either end to seal. put a pinch of salt and pepper on top of the filling.
Add a dab of margerine using 2 teaspoons, to keep the pastie moist, and a pinch of flour to soak up any juices. Get a cup of water, and using your fingertips, put water all the way around the edge of the pastry, leaving no gaps and about an inch wide.
With dry hands, fold up the pastry, starting at the bottom of the pastie where the filling is, and moving your hands upwards to fix the top.
You may have to talke out some of the filling to fit it in, otherwise it will poke out through the pastry.Ccrimp the edges of the pastry to keep the pastie’s shape. If making several with different fillings, mark the pastry with the inital of the person it is for. Fold the foil over into a ‘pastie’ shape around the pastie, scrunching it up at the top, so you can open it later. Put it in the oven at gas mark 5 for 2-3 hours
For the last 1/2 hour, take off the foil to brown off the pasties. Move them around the oven occasionally to cook them faster, as they will cook slowly if left in the centre. When they are cooked, they will be golden brown, and you can insert a knife into the pastry to make sure.
They can be made in large batches then frozen for practically as long as you like. They can be cooked straight from frozen, though they will need slightly longer in the oven. Any extra contents can also be frozen and used another time. If they are kept in the freezer, the pastry will be more crisp when cooked. They are much better than the ones sold in the shops – you will never eat one with carrot in again! When they are in the oven you can mostly forget about them, as they are so easy! They are eaten on their own, as they are very filling, and everything is already inside!