Sunday, 10 April 2011

How to make pasties...

Pasties are SO simple to make, quick to bake and extremely versatile in that you can fill them with whatever you like! They make a meal on their own, great snacks, packed lunches, sides and even mini dippers if you feel so inclined - just mix up the pastry, make up the pasties in size and quantity to suit and voila! Pasty heaven!

Here is a really simple pasty recipe:

You will need:

3 Cups of flour
3/4 Cups of CHILLED butter
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 to 1 cup of ice cold water (see recipe for why!)

Method:

When making pasties you ideally want to make sure that your hands are cool, your butter is chilled and your water is cold to ice cold. This will give your pastry a much better substance and affect the overall outcome of the texture/taste.

Step 1.

Sprinkle your salt into your flour and cut your butter into your flour using a pastry cutter. If you do not have one of this magical devices, don't despair! You can cut the butter into the flour by using 2 knives, pulling them away from one another in a cutting motion through the butter until the butter is sufficiently cut into the flour - pea size or less is absolutely fine.

Step 2.

Slowly and gradually mix your water into the flour. You need to mix it in until you have a nice glossy ball of dough that you can handle, which is formed together but isn't ridiculously sticky. If it becomes too sticky add some more flour - the dough needs to be manageable. If the flour is not manageable enough, add a little more water.

Step 3.

Cover your dough ball with cling wrap and place it in the fridge for 2 hours or longer if you have the time - I usually place mine in over night. This will give you a better dough to handle for rolling and will taste scrumptious! If you really have no time though, you can use the dough right away - but try it both ways and see the difference for yourself :)

Step 4.

When you are ready to use your dough, take it out of the fridge, kneed it around a little bit, separate it out into 6 sections (more if you want smaller pasties, less if you want giant pasties!) and roll into circles.

You're now ready to fill your pasties with whatever filling you wish!!

Some of my favourite fillings are:

Tuna and sweetcorn
Corned beef hash
Cornish (traditional)
Chili
Chicken and cheese

The list is endless!

Just make up a batch of whatever you like (enough to fill 6 pasties) and spoon into the center of the pastry! Just make sure the filling is cool before putting it into the pastry and you'll do wonders! Fold the pastry in half over the filling to create a crescent shape and twist the edges to keep them together (or press together with a fork and trim excess off neatly with a knife). Wash with egg and bake until lightly browned.

Pasties can be frozen for up to 3 months - maybe longer! Great for pre-planning meals!! Just defrost and bake to crisp when ready!

Yum!

Which ones will you make today?

Please click HERE to see a recipe for a traditional filling!

**Note - be daring! try making these with more or less water/flour, margarine too! But remember, margarine will make your dough a lot softer and may be a pain to handle - can produce great results though! :)

Enjoy!

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