Traveling the world through cuisine

Cornish Pasties

Classic English pub grub. A light, flaky crust stuffed with a mixture of beef and vegetables.

Cornish Pasties

Ingredients

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp of ketchup
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp of dried oregano
  • 1-2 lbs of beef, cubed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1-2 packages of puff pastry sheets
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Combine the garlic, soy sauce, ketchup, olive oil, and oregano into a dish, container, or bag you can seal up. Add salt and pepper to your liking.
  2. Place the cubed meat into the marinade, seal, and leave to marinate for at least four hours.
  3. When you’re happy with the meat, dump it into a mixing bowl and combine with the onion, carrots, and potatoes. Give it a stir to mix it all up. Season with salt and pepper to your liking.
  4. Preheat the oven to 450º. Have one or a few baking sheets ready with parchment paper on them or a light brushing of oil.
  5. Prepare your space for making the pasties. Break the egg into a small bowl and scramble it. Place a brush into the egg and keep it nearby. Make sure the surface you’re going to put the pastry sheets on is clean and dry. You might want to sprinkle a little flour on the surface if need be. Also make sure you’ve defrosted the sheets.
  6. Unfold and lay out one pastry sheet, then brush the outer edges with the egg.
  7. Place enough filling in the center to fill up the pasty nicely. The amount will vary depending on how big you’re making your pasty.
  8. Fold the pastry over and seal up the pasty. The diagram below offers two suggestions:

Folding Cornish Pasties

  1. With a knife or fork, poke a few holes in the middle from the top. This is for steam release.
  2. Place the pasty on your baking sheet and brush with the egg.
  3. Bake the pasties at 450º for 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to 350º and continue baking for another 30-40 minutes, or until the crust is a nice golden color.

Quick Notes

The kind of beef you use is really up to you. Some suggest flank steak, others might try skirt or sirloin. I remember I found an inexpensive package of lean steak chopped into pieces that would use for fajitas. Worked out perfectly.

When I used the Pepperidge Farm sheets, they didn’t unfold very easily, and you might run into the same problem. Zuzana and I ended up crumpling the sheet into a ball, then using flour and a rolling pin, we rolled it flat into a circle. You might have better luck though than we did. If you would rather try making puff pastry on your own, then I suggest just doing a Google search. I personally wanted to make it easier, and the sheets worked great.

In terms of sealing the pasty, there is the traditional “crimped” look of it, and you can learn it on this YouTube video, but I actually just pressed on the edges with a fork like you would a pie. Worked beautifully.

Variations

From my research on Cornish Pasties, I found that there really wasn’t a set traditional recipe that you must follow. Everyone seemed to have variation except on the two staples of meat and potato. I say go crazy. Change out the meat to chicken or turkey if you’re not into red meat. Add more vegetables or different vegetables. I’ve seen a few recipes that use leeks. I know that when I made these pasties, I also marinated some chicken Greek style, and folded them up into “pasties” with some roasted vegetables. Not necessarily English, but delicious.

One other variation I tried was phyllo as opposed to pastry sheets. I will admit it’s not the same thing, but it does make for a yummy dish. Simply use #7 phyllo like you would in making Spinach Pies.

Tags: beef, cornish pasty, English, Irish, pub grub

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