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Cornish Pastry Advice?

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Does anybody have any tips or recipes for a good dough to make cornish pastries with? I keep day-dreaming about these guys, and I figure the best way to fix that is to just make the damn things and eat 'em. That said, I was thinking about trying a plain ol' pate brisee. I'm afraid that might be too fragile, though. I seem to remember an episode of Good Eats where Alton Brown described the best dough for a pocket-ish pie as more biscuity than standard pie dough.

Any info / advice is welcome.

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  1. Two Fat Ladies had an episode with Cornish (or Welsh) pasties. It might still be somewhere on the Food Network.

    I always made them for my late father (from Minnesota) using regular pie crusts and he insisted on having homemade whole cranberry sauce with them. Specifically for that purpose I bought lots of cranberries at Thanksgiving and kept them in the garage freezer. The pasties also froze well.

    When I made them I used either top sirloin steak or chuck, cut into small pieces. In a pinch I once used puff pastry sheets and that was really good, although not truly authentic. Another tip - cut a small hole in the top of the individual pasties and pour a little melted butter, milk and water into it before baking (make sure you have a tight seal on the crust). That helps to cook the potatoes, rutabagas, carrots and onions as well as keeping the meat moist.

    1. The Pastie, a product sold on just about every commercial corner where I live, is made with a simple pie dough covering with one adjustment. That is the amount of lard (or vegetable shortening) used in the preparation. Where a typical pie dough might use up to a cup or more to 3 cups of flour, pasties use something closer to 1/4 cup.
      What you put inside the crust is purely up to you. They are often made using raw ingredients and bake at about 400 degrees for up to an hour, but you can also fill them with prepared beef stew, or anyting similar if you with. Just don't overdo the liquid and be sure to vent them slightly.

      1. Thanks for the tips! I'll have to make two batches now I guess. I love using puff pastry too, but I think it would be much more economical to just whip up a batch of crust.

        1. Standard shortcrust always works for me. For four pasties, I work to 10oz plain flour and 5oz lard. Apologies for non-metric measurements - it's an old recipe.

          I use left-over stew meat, chopped small - together with potato, carrot, onion (and, occasionally, I add swede if I have it). I usually freeze them and cook later (fan oven for 180C for about 30 minutes). They need nothig more than Daddies Brown Sauce.

          1. Made a stew tonight. I'll probably whip up some pasties tomorrow. Hopefully there will be some leftover to freeze, but I'm afraid the chances of me eating them all are quite good.