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Cornish Pasties

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Ingredients

(serves 8)

For the filling:

Beef skirt, rump steak or braising steak                350g

Waxy potatoes               350g

Swede                            200g

Onions                             175g

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Knob of butter or margarine

 

For the pastry:

Strong bread flour         500g

Vegetable shortening    120g

Salt                                   1 tsp

Butter                                25g

Cold water                       175g

1 Free-range egg, beaten with a little salt (for glazing)

Method

 

1. Starting with the pastry, tip the flour into a bowl and add the shortening, a pinch of salt, the margarine or butter and all of the water.

2. Use a spoon to gently combine the ingredients, and then, use your hands to crush everything together as a fairly dry dough.

3. Turn out the dough onto a clean work surface (there’s no need to put flour or oil onto the surface because it’s a tight rather than sticky dough).

4. Knead the dough to combine the ingredients properly. Use the heel of your hand to stretch the dough. Roll it back up into a ball, then turn it, stretch and roll it up again. Repeat this process for about 5-6 minutes. The dough will start to become smooth as the shortening breaks down. If the dough feels grainy, keep working it until it’s smooth and glossy. Don’t be afraid to be rough – you’ll need to use lots of pressure and work the dough vigorously to get the best results.

5. When the dough is smooth, wrap it in cling film and chill for 30–60 minutes.

6. While the dough is resting, peel and cut the potato, swede and onion into cubes about 1cm/½in square. Cut the beef into similar sized chunks. Put all four ingredients into a bowl and mix. Season well with salt and some freshly ground black pepper, and then put the filling to one side until the dough is ready.

7. Once the dough has had time to relax, take it out of the fridge. The margarine or butter will have chilled, giving you a tight dough. Divide the dough into four equal-sized pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a disc roughly 25cm/10in wide (roughly the same size as a dinner plate).

8. Spoon a quarter of the filling onto each disc. Spread the filling on one half of the disc, leaving the other half clear. Put a knob of butter or margarine on top of the filling.

9. Carefully fold the pastry over, join the edges and push with your fingers to seal. Crimp the edge to make sure the filling is held inside – either by using a fork, or by making small twists along the sealed edge. Traditionally, Cornish pasties have around 20 crimps. When you’ve crimped along the edge, fold the end corners underneath. Preheat Aquaforno to 180c/190c with the pizza stone in place, using charcoal and kiln dried logs.

10. Put the pasties onto the baking tray or directly on to the pizza stone and brush the top of each pasty with the egg and salt mixture. Bake in the top  oven for about 25 minutes or until the pasties are golden-brown. If your pasties aren’t browning, increase the temperature by adding some dry wood for the last 10 minutes of cooking time.

Aquaforno II

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