Thursday, September 16, 2010
Continuing on a Paul Hollywood theme, this is his classic cornish pasty recipe. This means that the pastry is neither flaky nor lardy - it's robust and faintly chewy - as it would have to be to be transported down t'pit by the miners for whom these were invented.
The flavour of this recipe is just excellent and if you've never made a cornish pasty before and fancy having a go, this is a good recipe that works well and will produce something that tastes exactly like some cornish pasties that you have eaten in your life.
What it is not is an unctuous, greasy, sinful pasty you might purchase at Greggs or similar - just so we're clear. You'd probably be able to achieve that with a very high lard-content pastry, but I don't have exact measurements for that. Yet.
Makes 4 large pasties
For the pastry
500g strong white flour
120g vegetable shortening, eg Stork
1 beaten egg
For the filling
350g beef skirt or braising steak
350g waxy potatoes
salt and black pepper
1 Sieve the flour and salt into a bowl. Cut the veg shortening and butter up into small chunks and add that. I squeezed it all round a bit in the flour to mix it in but that isn't neccessary.
2 Add all the water and mix round until it comes together roughly. Then go in with your hands and bring together. Knead on a clean surface for 5-6 minutes. If you're feeling a bit neurotic, I recommend putting a timer on because 5 minutes is longer than you think it is.
3 After five mins the pastry ought to be a uniform colour, pastry-like and semi-silky. Stick this in the fridge for a minimum of 30 mins
4 Chop up all your veg very small. I'm talking 0.5cm cubes here. Chop the steak up bloody small, too. Mix it all together in a bowl and season. Add one more pinch of salt than you think you need and at least two more twists of pepper. A cornish pasty is traditionally quite a peppery thing.
5 The assembly part is quite tricky and is basically down to your individual dexterity. I rolled my pastry out then used an upside-down bowl to cut out a large-ish circular bit of pastry. I filled the middle with pasty mixture, brushed around the circumference of the pastry with egg wash and then sealed it. But I'm buggered if I understand how "crimping" the edges works. You may have more luck than me. I possibly, like the fated Jas on the GBBO, over-filled my pasties.
6 Lay out your pasties on a well-greased baking sheet, because these leak steak juice something terrible and will superglue themselves to an un-greased surface. Brush all over with egg wash and cook for between 45-55 minutes at 170C or 150C for fan-assisted ovens. I did mine for 150C at 45mins and then as they weren't going brown enough, wacked up the temperature to 180C for another ten minutes.
Eat down a mine. Or just in your kitchen.