Friday, November 30, 2012

Pastie pastry?

A few weeks ago, I made a steak and kidney pudding or, more accurately, a steak pudding, since I couldn't find any kidney at the time. The recipe included its own version of suet pasty, which was interesting, but meant I still needed to make the slightly different suet pastry (p80) in the pastry chapter.

According to the recipe, suet pastry is for use in savoury puddings. I had no real desire to steam another savoury pudding, but I thought it might be possible to use the suet pastry for a Cornish pastie instead. My 1998 version of the Edmonds book does not include a Cornish pastie recipe, so I consulted my 1986 edition instead.

The pastry was very easy to make: I had some suet left from making the pudding, so all I had to do was mix it with flour, salt and water. It made  a lovely soft dough, though you could still see lumps of suet here and there in the pastry.

Using the 1980 pastie recipe as a guide, I mixed up a filling of steak and chopped potato, adding various herbs and seasonings. This recipe was included in the old "Meat with Oxo" section which no longer features in the Edmonds book. I guess the pastie recipe fell by the wayside when they took that section out.

I rolled out my pastry and spooned my filling over half of it, then folded the pastry over the top and pinched the edges together. A few pricks of a fork, and a brush with milk (I would have used an egg-wash, but I'd run out of eggs) and my pastie was ready to go in the oven.

Half  an hour later, I pulled out a slightly lumpy, slightly oozing, but still beautifully golden pasty that smelled and tasted as delicious as it looked. The suet pastry was light, crisp, and had a nice savoury flavour to it.

I couldn't help thinking about the fat content as I ate my entire massive pasty (which really should have been too big for one sitting, but I couldn't stop chomping on it). It's quite a disconcerting feeling knowing precisely how much fat you have put into something. So no, you wouldn't want to be eating this every day, but if you happen to have some suet that needs using, making a pastie with suet pastry is not a bad way to go.

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