Classic Cornish pasties
- January 2018
- Makes 6
- Hands-on time 1 hour, oven time 1 hour, plus chilling
Debbie Major turns her expert hand to proper Cornish pasties made with braising steak, tweaking and perfecting the recipe until she finds her best possible version.
- 36.5g (11.8g saturated)
- 79.9g (5.2g sugars)
For the pastry
- 100g hard margarine, such as Stork Original baking block
- 100g lard
- 450g strong plain white bread flour, plus extra to dust
- ½ tsp salt
- 200ml ice-cold water
For the filling
- 450g braising steak (skirt, chuck or blade), cut into 1cm pieces
- 225g peeled swede, cut into 1cm cubes
- 600g peeled waxy potatoes, such as charlotte or anya, cut into 1cm cubes
- 225g onion, finely chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 medium free-range egg, beaten
- Freeze the margarine and lard for at least 1 hour until very firm.
- Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Remove the margarine and lard from the freezer and coarsely grate them on a box grater straight into the flour, flicking some of the flour onto the fats as you work if they start to get a little sticky.
- Rub the grated fats into the flour with your fingertips, then mix in the ice-cold water using a dinner knife until it all comes together into a soft dough.
- Turn the pastry out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 1 minute until smooth and slightly elastic. Wrap in cling film and chill for 1 hour.
- Meanwhile make the filling. Mix the steak, swede and potatoes in a bowl with the chopped onion, 1 tsp salt and ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper.
- Weigh the pastry, divide into 6 equal pieces, then roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to a 20cm circle. Weigh the filling, divide equally into 6 and pile it into the centre of each circle. Use your hands to pack it gently into a rugby-ball shape that sits across the centre of each pastry circle. Brush one half of each pastry edge with a little water, then bring it over the filling and press the edges together well. Fold over and crimp the edge with your fingers to give a good seal. Put the pasties, spaced well apart, on a baking sheet lined with non-stick baking paper and chill for 1 hour.
- Heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4. Remove the pasties from the fridge and brush them generously with the beaten egg. Make 3 small slits in the top of each pasty and bake for 1 hour until richly golden. Transfer the pasties to a wire cooling rack and eat while still warm.
Make and chill the pastry up to 2 days ahead and keep well wrapped in the fridge, or freeze for up to 1 month. The unbaked pasties can be made a day ahead, then baked to order. Any leftover cooked pasties will keep for a few days in the fridge. They’re best warmed in the oven or microwave to serve.
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