Cornwall is a proud county with a rich heritage and has well established itself on the food scene with top restaurants from well-renowned chefs – Rick Stein, Paul Ainsworth and Nathan Outlaw to name a few. It’s fair to say we are blessed to be situated in the middle of a foodies retreat here at the Point. That said, for all the fine dining food experiences on offer in North Cornwall there are none such like a traditional Cornish pasty sat watching over the sea or on the harbour wall. For many visitors to Cornwall, this ritual becomes a staple part of their visit from year to year. But it doesn’t have to be this way! Although only a pasty made in Cornwall can be called and sold as a Cornish pasty, keen bakers can try for themselves to recreate that holiday experience in the comfort of their own kitchen.
This recipe comes from the Cornish Pasty Association who know a thing or two about making pasties.
Ingredients (Makes Six regular pasties)
- 500 g strong bread flour (need the extra strength in the gluten to produce strong pliable pastry)
- 120 g lard
- 125 g Cornish butter
- 1 tsp salt
- 175 ml cold water
- 400 g good quality beef skirt, cut into cubes
- 300 g potato, peeled and diced
- 150 g swede/turnip*, peeled and diced
- 150 g onion, peeled and sliced
- Salt & pepper to taste (2:1 ratio)
- Beaten egg or milk to glaze
*The vegetable to use is the yellow-fleshed swede, not a white turnip. This is known commonly in Cornwall as the turnip. It’s also known as the yellow turnip/Swedish turnip in some places.
- Add the salt to the flour in a large mixing bowl.
- Rub the two types of fat lightly into flour until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add water, bring the mixture together and knead until the pastry becomes elastic. This will take longer than normal pastry but it gives the pastry the strength that is needed to hold the filling and retain a good shape.
- Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 3 hours in the fridge. Note: It is almost impossible to roll and shape the pastry when fresh.
- Roll out the pastry and cut into circles approx. 20cm diameter. A side plate is an ideal size guide.
- Layer the vegetables and meat on top of the pastry, adding plenty of seasoning.
- Bring the pastry around and crimp the edges together.
- Lightly brush the edge of the pastry with water.
- Fold the other half of pastry over the filling and squeeze the half-circle edges firmly together.
- Push down on the edge of the pasty and using your index finger and thumb twist the edge of the pastry over to form a crimp.
- Repeat this process along the edge of the pasty.
- When you’ve crimped along the edge, tuck the end corners underneath.
- The finished pasty, ready to bake!
- Glaze with beaten egg or an egg and milk mixture.
- Bake at 165?C (fan oven) for about 50 – 55 minutes until golden brown.
Once baked, pasties should be left to cool slightly before being enjoyed at your favourite location with a view or in your very own dining room. Best washed down with a proper Cornish ale!