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Old 07-02-2005, 09:18 PM   #1
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Pasties

Does anyone have a recipe for cornish pasties - or for that matter, sausage rolls? This is something my gran used to make, and was standard fare at all family celebrations. Mainly, I'd like to have a standard pastry recipe - I think a shortcrust pastry would be good, but I've had sausage rolls in flaky pastry, and that was actually very nice (and decadent). My gran used to just pull out the ingredients and get going - forget precise measuring, she had the feel of it. Wish I was that good! - Sandyj

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Old 07-03-2005, 04:59 AM   #2
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If you have a recipe from your grandmother - you've got a start on figuring this out. If you remember how she made them, that's another clue. If you remember what they tasted like - you might be able to figure out "the" recipe to use. This is one dish that varies by the cook and what was available to go into it - as variations on a basic theme.

The shortcrust pastry was, originally, probably either lard (most likely) or butter - depends on what was on hand ... although some "updated" recipes will use shortning - plus flour and water.

As for the meat in the filling - it could be beef, lamb, mutton or sometimes pork. And, it would generally have either turnips or rutabaga - with potatoes and with/without carrots. Seasonings could be as simple as salt and pepper, or might include parsley, or a mixture of other herbs, and might even include spices like nutmeg. While generally baked, they could also be fried - and size was up to the cook and the preference of the miner eating it.

I've learned that this is a food of the common man - one without much money - that was made from bits and scraps and things that were available. There is no one "definitive" recipe.

Here are a couple of places to start looking to find a recipe that "sounds" like what your gran made ....

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=pasty+recipe

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=pastie+recipe
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Old 07-03-2005, 06:58 AM   #3
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Here's my family recipe for sausage rolls. Don't know whether your sausage meat is the same as British stuff, though!

SAUSAGE ROLLS

500g pork sausage meat - good quality
1 medium onion
500g shortcrust or puff pastry (puff is more traditional but we like shortcrust!)
1/4 teaspoon salt/plenty of freshly ground black pepper
Milk or beaten egg as a glaze


Preheat the oven to Gas mark 8.

Season the meat and add finely chopped onion and mix together well. Using your hands, roll sausage meat out to a 'rope' (not too thin - and use a little flour to stop the sausagement sticking to the work surface).

Roll out the pastry to a rectangle about 50cm by 40cm. Cut into three strips lengthways. Divide the sausage rope into 3 portions and place each part along the edge of one strip of pastry.

Rub a little water along the opposite edges of the pastry. Starting at the sausage meat side, roll over the pastry towards the other side, until you have formed a roll with the seam at the bottom. Gently firm down.

Cut each log into about 8 rolls. Using kitchen scissors, cut three diagonal slits in the top of each roll. Brush a little milk or egg wash over each one to glaze.

Place the sausage rolls on baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to Gas mark 6 - and cook for a further 20 minutes, or until cooked.

These can be eaten hot or cold. You can make them a few days in advance and keep them in an airtight container and just pop back into the office to heat through just before required.
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Old 07-03-2005, 11:00 PM   #4
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Thank you - I'm trying tomorrow

Thanks for your replies and recipes.
I remember how my gran's pies tasted (and smelled), and yes, she didn't really use a recipe because she put into them whatever was on hand - often leftover Sunday meat (lamb, mutton etc.) and yes, turnips, rutabaga or diced potatoes. There was also a cafe (tea shop) near where we used to live that made the most divine pasties and sausage rolls - they used puff pastry, my Gran used shortcrust (lard butter flour, ice water, cold hands). The cafe was the Ramona Cafe in Uitenhage, Eastern Cape, South Africa. It was owned by a Greek family (Michaelides (sp?)). They closed it in the '90s. Their pie filling was always sausage meat with a 'sage' and pepper kind of a taste. I made what I hoped was something similar using pork sausage, ground beef and sage/white pepper/salt - but I made my own pastry (basically shortcrust). I'm just learning, and I think I handled the pastry too much, so it wasn't as flaky and crumbly. It froze well, though. I'm just dying for a lovely pie and a really good cup of tea (to restore my soul!!!). I am trying out your recipe tomorrow in honour of
4th of July (starters for a party) - Sandyj
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Old 07-03-2005, 11:04 PM   #5
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ooh, forgot this...

Yes, I agree, meat pies seem to be in every culture. I've had delicious rooties (sp?) and samoosas (India) and Empanadas (Spanish ?), Cornish pasties, my grans pasties, and, recently, dumplings at a Chinese restaurant. Ag, isn't it lovely? -Sandyj
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Old 07-04-2005, 03:08 AM   #6
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You're right - the less you handle the dough the better it will be. It's just like a pie crust.

I'm lazy these days - I make my shortcrust pastry in my food processor. I cube the cold lard into about 1/4 inch pieces, and toss them and the flour into a covered bowl - and put that and the steel blade and work bowl from my food processor into the fridge for a couple of hours. I then add the lard and flour to the food processor - give it 10-15 1-second pulses, continue to pulse and add ice water until it's the right texture (usually about 5 more pulses) .... dump it out onto the counter, form it quickly into a disc about 6-inchs in diameter, wrap in plastic wrap, and pop it back in the fridge for about 2 hours (allows the lard to firm back up, any gluten that developed to relax, and gives time for the flour to fully hydrate). Then it's just a matter of rolling it out ....
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Old 07-04-2005, 03:29 AM   #7
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Do a search on here for Cornish pasties - I've posted a link to a genuine Cornish site, and I've used that recipe and consider it is 'authentic' (I visit Cornwall at least once a year!) However, there are probably as many Cornish recipes for pasties as there are Cornish cooks!
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Old 07-05-2005, 01:28 PM   #8
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Follow up...

Ishbel: I made the sausage rolls from your recipe, and they did come out very nicely - I made my own shortcrust pastry but I bought the sausage meat that came in a tube - no casing on it. It tastes like breakfast sause (pork/sage) and I added the onion and some seasoning to it. I could actually make my own, but this was a shortcut.

Michael: I've wanted a food processor for long time to do pastry and such, but have been nervous that I wouldn't use it often. Space in my kitchen is horribly limited. Now I'm torn between a food processor and a standing mixer with the grinder attachment so I could make my own sausage.

I couldn't locate the link to the Cornish website. I'm new to this - perhaps I'm not looking in the right place?
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Old 07-05-2005, 05:33 PM   #9
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Glad the sausage rolls turned out well!

Here's the Cornish Light site. Have a look at the photographs - they illustrate the traditional shape and filling!

http://www.cornishlight.co.uk/cornish-pasty.htm
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Old 07-05-2005, 06:01 PM   #10
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Michael; You continue to amaze me. I live in pastie country. My mother co-owned a bakery and that was one of their main products. I've been eating pasties most of my life, and have been making them for years. But as I said, Upper Peninsula Michigan IS pastie country. We used to have copper and iron mines galore, especially in the Western U.P.

But you're in Fort Worth, Texas. I can't imagin you have many Cornish settlers in your area. You have either traveled substantially, or are great at research, or both. You nailed what a pastie is. Good job my freind. Kudos.

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Old 07-06-2005, 09:21 AM   #11
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If that's the case, I'm moving to the UP

I didn't know there was anywhere in the States where pasties were commonly available! I used to live in Michigan, too! Who knew? -Sandy
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Old 07-06-2005, 10:00 AM   #12
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Pasties in Michigan

I have to agree with Goodweed of the North. Upper Michigan IS pastie country and no one makes them better than "Yoopers."
My in-laws were born and raised in Calumet and Houghton and if anyone knew how to make the world's best pastie it was my MIL.
I tried so many times to duplicate them, but there was something "missing." We lived in Michigan til 1986 then to San Diego and now live in Las Vegas. We spend the summer (May thru Oct.) in Traverse City Michigan and the best pasties we've had so far are at the Mackinaw Pastie company in Mackinaw City. The west coast doesn't have a clue as to how a pastie should be made, or even what they ARE. I miss Michigan pasties so much. My MIL used flank or round steak chopped, carrots, onions, rutabega (a must) chopped fresh parsley, lots of it, and salt and pepper. She topped the pastie with a dollop of butter before folding over the dough and when you bit into her pasties you were in heaven. She originally made crust the way they do in the UP, with beef suet but switchd to Crisco because of the cholesterol problem. Her sister in law still make them with suet and the crust was unbelieveably good.. Now my mouth is watering. Looks like another trip to Mackinaw City this week.
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Old 07-06-2005, 10:10 AM   #13
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Hello DramaQueen
I think natives of Cornwall might take issue with your first sentence
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Old 07-06-2005, 10:33 AM   #14
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Goodweed and DramaQ

Out of curiosity, because of the presence of so many people with Cornish ancestry in the area - I just wondered whether there were other Cornish dishes which are popular over there, besides Cornish pasties?

I was thinking of specifically Cornish dishes, like Saffron cake, Fairings (a type of biscuit) and fish dishes like star-gazey pie?
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Old 07-06-2005, 11:16 AM   #15
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Show me the Pastie

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel
Hello DramaQueen
I think natives of Cornwall might take issue with your first sentence
If any native of Cornwall will be kind enough to bring me a pastie to try, I might recant my statement.

As for the dishes you asked about, I have never heard of any of them, but we'll be taking a trip to the Upper Peninsula in a week or so and will give them a try and let you know.

Now that I think of it, my MIL used to make Saffron Bread and it was delicious. Probably the same as Saffron Cake. Saffron is big in the U.P. The Star Gazey pie has me intrigued. Gotta find out what that is.
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Old 07-06-2005, 11:27 AM   #16
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Star gazey pie

Well look at this. I did a google search and came up with this for Star Gazey pie.


You may use herring or mackerel for this but scale them first, open and
debone. Put parsley, pepper and salt inside, roll them up. Put
bread-crumbs in bottom of a buttered pie-dish, then layer of fish, layer of
crumbs, fish, etc, before covering all with beaten egg, a few rashers of
bacon, and a good couple of dollops of cream. Put pastry over dish, with
slits in it for some fish heads to look out. When baked, stick a sprig of
fresh parsley in each fish-mouth and serve. Can you imagine the
surprises -- at seeing it and then tasting it!

For marinating pilchards or mackerel, use a "Moderate" oven and cook for
60-75 mins and that should do it for you. Otherwise, using a "Slow" oven,
leave them cooking overnight.

Geoff Ford Sydney NSW
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:26 PM   #17
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Drama Queen; If you're gonna be in the U.P. in a week or so, are you by any chance heading over to the Eastern part, namely Sault Ste. Marie? If so, let me know and I'll give you my phone number. Maybe we could meet. That would be grand. My wife is always up for meeting with new freinds.

And I'm sorry but the pastie recipe is the only cornish recipe that I know. I would guess though that other recipes have at the very least influenced the cooking styles around here. We have a lot of meat and potato people. And things like boiled dinner, meat pies, etc. are standard fair in these parts. Of course you won't find better fresh water fish anywhere in the world. We have Lake Superior, the cleanest and possibly coldest body of fresh water around. The fish from that lake are extraordinary. So much so that we tend to snub our noses at catfish, carp, bullheads, bass, etc. We dine on wallye, yellow perch, several species of salmon, lake trout, bron trout, steelhead, norther pike, muskies, rainbow and speckled trout (my absolute favorites), and even the minisule but wonderful smelt.

And then there's the wild game...
And then there's the wild rasberries, and the best tasting wild blue berries anywhere, free for the picking. I drive through the logging trails with the windows open until I smell the blueberries in the air. Then we start picking.

But this was about pasties so I'm leaving now. I must be hungry or something.

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Old 07-06-2005, 01:15 PM   #18
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Goodweed, every time you write about the UP you make me so homesick! I need to get back, to see family, but especially to eat!!!
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Old 07-06-2005, 04:11 PM   #19
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Star Gazey Pie

That Star Gazey Pie sounds quite nice and not too difficult to make - I remember reading a recipe for it long ago - love the name. I think I'm going to give this a go.

DramaQ, your MIL's cornish pastie recipe with the dollop of butter sounds just like my grandmother's. She once told me (confidentially) that if I'm tasting something I made and it doesn't taste quite right, I could always add a dollop of butter! She was cooking and baking right into her 90's and never dieted or knew much about cholesterol - she did eat healthy food - lots of vegetables, but, loved her meat (and the fat on it). She was from a farm. I think her 'secret' was all good things in moderation. -Sandyj
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Old 07-06-2005, 05:13 PM   #20
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Meeting Goodweed

Would love to meet with you Goodweed. As soon as our plans are firmed up I'll get your phone number.
As for the walleye, lake perch and Lake Superior Whitefish, I'm sure there may be better fish somewhere in this world but I doubt it. As I mentioned, we retired to Las Vegas, but we spend the summers here in Traverse City so I look forward to eating those fish while we're here and also smelt.
The raspeberries, strawberries and blueberries on the West Coast can't come anywhere near comparing to those from Michigan. Ditto on corn. Michigan has a lot going for it as a farming state and some of the best food is grown here. We spend the summer eating all of our favorite foods, then go home to recuperate and diet.
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