The original Cornish pasties or "Tiddy-Oggies" were probably the first fast food - they were taken as packed meals by the Cornish tin miners to their daily work. The pastry shell was made with an extended 'handle' that was thrown away after the main part of the pasty was eaten, because of the miner's dirty hands. There is even a tradition that pasties were made with the meat and vegetable filling at one end, and a jam filling at the other so that the miner had his 'pudding' as well as his main course in one neat package!
I prefer to precook my vegetables and meat, although this is never done in Cornwall. I find this gives a nice well-rounded flavour to the filling and avoids the problem of a tough chewy crust from over-baking while trying to get the filling cooked through.
I should mention that there is much controversy as to the correct filling for pasty; some like to add carrots, celery and even peas and sweet corn. To each his own!
Cornish Pasties Recipe
Coat the beef chunks in flour and then sauté in oil in batches until lightly browned.
Stir in the chopped onions and continue to cook, stirring gently until onions are translucent and soft.
Season with Worcestershire Sauce, salt, pepper and thyme, stir well and add the beef broth.
Continue to cook at a low temperature, uncovered, until the potatoes and turnip are partially cooked and the liquid has reduced.
Allow to cool to room temperature, then stir to mix.
Remove the meat and vegetables from any excess sauce (reserve for use in gravy)
Divide the pastry into eight and roll into 8 inch (20 cm) rounds spooning the filling into the centre of each.
Brush the edges with water and bring together to form the pasties. Crimp the edges decoratively with your fingertips.
Place the pasties onto a baking sheet covered with parchment paper or a silicon mat. (four to a sheet - bake in two seperate batches)
Bake at 425°F or 220°C for 15 minutes.
Remove from oven and brush with egg wash, then return to 350°F (180°C) oven for a further 40 minutes.
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