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autumn 2010

  • Classic Cornish Pasties
  • For the pastry:
  • 4 cups of plain all purpose flour
  • 185 grams of butter
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup of cold water
  • ½ cup of cold milk
  • For the filling:
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 250 grams of swede / rutabaga, cubed
  • 2 large baking potatoes, diced
  • 500 grams of beef rump steak
  • 4 tablespoons of tomato sauce or ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon of dry mustard power
  • freshly ground sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  1. In a large bowl or food processor sift the flour and salt.
  2. Cut the cold butter into small cubes and rub into the flour with your hands or using the food processor, until it resembles course breadcrumbs.
  3. Make a well in the centre and add sufficient water / milk mixed to form a firm dough.
  4. Handle as little as possible while forming it together, as over handling causes pastry the be tough and hard when it is baked. Cover the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat your oven to 200°C (392°F)
  7. Chop the onion finely, discarding the core.
  8. Peel the swede and potatoes and cut into very small cubes around 1cm (½ inch).
  9. Slice the steak into small pieces approximately the same size.
  10. Place the meat and vegetables into a large bowl and toss through the seasoning, mustard and tomato sauce, then cover.
  11. On a lightly floured bench or board roll the pastry out to around 5 mm (1/8 inch) thick.
  12. Cut 6 rounds, using a 15 cm (8 inch) diameter plate as a guide.
  13. Arrange the filling evenly in the centre of each round and brush a little of the egg on one edge.
  14. Lift the opposite edge of the pastry over the filling to seal the pasty.
  15. Fold and pinch at regular intervals along the edge to form a neat crimp.
  16. Brush each pasty with egg to glaze and place on a baking tray
  17. You can use any leftover pastry scraps to "name" your Pasty.
  18. Bake for ¾ to 1 hour, until golden and cooked through.

The traditional Cornish Pasty funnily enough originated in "Cornwall" - England, as a handy way for tin miners to take their lunch to work.

The Classic Cornish pasty recipe is Shortcrust pastry encasing a mixture of chopped beef and potato and swede folded over to the side to form a half moon or D shape and having no less than 17 and no more than 21 crimps.

The pasty was originally held onto by this thick crimped edge, often being discarded thereafter by the miner to avoid the risk of arsenic poisoning from his dirty hands. Some folklore suggests that the leftover crimps were also used as an offering to the spirits who also inhabited the mines.

Some mines had ovens at the top of the shafts to keep their lunchtime pasties warm and their wives often would top the pasty with her husbands initials so as not to confuse which pasty belonged to who.

Autumn 2010 Front Cover Table of Contents Bron's Thoughts Apples and Pears Apple, Carrot and Radish Salad Swede and Apple Soup with Ginger
Nutella and Pear Pinwheel Scones Devilled Apples and Pork Sausages Walnuts Roasted Tomato and Walnut Soup Desserts of the Earth Sticky Kumara and Date Pudding with Caramel sauce
Kumara and Toasted Coconut Lentils Ilva Beretta Gnocchi alla Romana Budino di Riso Cornish Pasties Thai Red Curried Fish Pasties
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