Perfect pasties

Perfect pasties

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(39 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 55 mins Plus chilling

Skill level

Moderately easy


Makes 4

Reawaken childhood memories of summer holidays with Sara Buenfeld's eat-by-the-sea favourite, the humble pasty

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition per pasty



For the pastry

  • 125g chilled and diced butter
  • 125g lard
  • 500g plain flour, plus extra
  • 1 egg, beaten

For the filling

  • 350g beef skirt or chuck steak, finely chopped
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 175g swedes, peeled, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper

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  1. Rub the butter and lard into the flour with a pinch of salt using your fingertips or a food processor, then blend in 6 tbsp cold water to make a firm dough. Cut equally into 4, then chill for 20 mins.
  2. Heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Mix together the filling ingredients with 1 tsp salt. Roll out each piece of dough on a lightly floured surface until large enough to make a round about 23cm across – use a plate to trim it to shape. Firmly pack a quarter of the filling along the centre of each round, leaving a margin at each end. Brush the pastry all the way round the edge with beaten egg, carefully draw up both sides so that they meet at the top, then pinch them together to seal. Lift onto a non-stick baking tray and brush with the remaining egg to glaze.
  3. Bake for 10 mins, then lower oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 and cook for 45 mins more until golden. Great served warm.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2008

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Show comments
stevoa's picture

Terrible. I couldn't even cook these, the pastry recipe is junk. Touch the pastry dough and it just crumbles and falls apart. Forget being able to actually roll it out and fold it up and around the filling.
Anyone who says this recipe works SURELY must have done something different with the pastry.

Lori1234's picture

I would like to make some small cornish pasties as a 'canape' for a Cornish evening I am doing - has anyone tried this before? Any advice? Thx

caboroig's picture

I don't mind whether these are Cornish or Devonian...they are so tasty. I made the pastry as suggested and it was lovely. I agree with previous comments you do need to cut the veg small and I also added a crumbled beef stock cube. My family were impressed I'd made them and have asked for them again!

Beejaylucas's picture

I'd say it's pretty much a Cornish pasty - all this talk of top or side crimping seems a bit petty to me. My aunt was Cornish and she did them both. The ingredients need to be cut very thin (for girl at school for exam - very small cubes of swede and use a potato peeler on the spuds) .. and also a tip is to put a small amount of butter and a sprinkle of dry beef stock cube on the ingredients before sealing up. And as for the pastry... use the ready made stuff, it's just as good... unless it's your exam!!!!! ;-}

Bellydancer49's picture

~The pasty shown is NOT a CORNISH pasty - its a DEVON pasty - because Cornish pasties have the crimping to the side NOT on the TOP!!!
Also best way to eat a Cornish pasty is with a raw sweet tomato and a cup of sweet tea - with an extra teaspoonful of sugar than you normally take. ENJOY!!!

RachieT00's picture

The ratio of fat to flour in your pastry is all wrong. It should be half fat to flour or shortcrust pastry.

taffydog's picture

It is!

taffydog's picture

It is!

Angela Meagher's picture

sent posting 13.10 6th nov 2013, forgot to mention that I added 2 tbls of beef stock to meat and mixed well so the filling wouldn't be dry

Angela Meagher's picture

I made the cornish pasties, I am not a lover of swede or turnip so I added small diced carrot instead and added about 1tsp of aramat and everything else was according to recipe, it was delicious and have made a couple of batches for my freezer for lazy winter evening snack. Shop bought pastry would not be as good, too weak to hold filling for long term cooking.

maxbax's picture

I made this with shop bought pastry and added 1/2 carrot 1/2 swede, other than I'd slightly under seasoned the mix it was delicious and the family loved them. They were very big so the 2nd batch I made smaller.

lindsayentwistle's picture

My daughter had decided to make these as part of her GCSE food tech and they weren't a success - the filling was tasteless and the vegetables needed chopping much smaller as they didn't cook properly. She found an alternative recipe in the end.

clarab's picture

These took me ages and both the filling and pastry were a disaster. Lots of very positive comments though so will try again at some point!

kjclarke56's picture

Being Devonian, I love pasties (westcountry versions)and am always looking to improve my recipe, this one isn`t good, best pastry is half to two thirds fat to weight of flour, pure lard being best!

sydneygeorge's picture

?? I am pure Devonshire, Dartmothian in fact and have always loved the Cornish Pasty, but I have also love the Devonshire Pasty, which my Uncles used to take to work, as their jobs were sometimes quite dirty work, but the Devonshire Pasty is a TIDDY OGGIE, NOT THE Cornish Pasty, the Cornis Pasty is a Cornish Pasty.

cduggan's picture
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I make these regularly. However the filling may depend on what I have, have done with chicken, or just chopped up cheese triangles. Made a tomato version another time. So easy.

kevinwil96's picture

Not enough pepper....and crimped on top ???? I dont think so...always crimped on the side in Cornwall..crimping on top is the Devon way

ruby_may98's picture
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Turned out good in the end although I had to ignore the instructions. I added cheese to the filling. Also, I boiled the potatoes and swedes first before adding to the filling so I only had to cook it for 15 minutes.

duffname's picture
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mine didnt look like your picture, used corn beef from a can instead, tasted fine, even my son ate it. will have another go soon. perhaps my oven was a bit too hot to start with, will try again.

hollawolla's picture
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Once I had got over the pastry drama and purchased a roll in a flash the pasties came together and I turned the mixture into seven beautiful packages. They went down a treat and although the pastry will NEVER be attempted again for this recipe I shall certainly be doing them again. Hubby munched his way through most of them leaving just enough for the children. I shall mark with four stars leaving one off for the awful pastry mix. If you purchase your pastry, or use another homemade recipe, then these pasties are well worth doing. I have had requests for more!