Cornish Pasties

I did it.  I made Cornish Pasties, ostensibly a “Great Lakes” regional dish.  It was my second “Regional Cuisine of the U.S. and Canada” endeavor of the month, the first being American Chop Suey. I did not bother with photos of the first one; I must have been distracted..  This may be an opportune time to admit my “Doing Without” plans for December have gone to hell in a handbasket. That is, I have not avoided restaurants the way I promised I would.

I will regroup by having a stern talk with myself in January; I must recover from going badly astray.  But in the interim, I’m still having some fun with my efforts to cook regional cuisine.  And here is the saga of my effort to make Cornish pasties, in photos and captions:


The ingredients for the filling; ground beef, ground lamb, rutabaga, onions, potatoes, carrots, salt, pepper, beef bouillon, etc.


The aftermath of my pastry-making; this was after considerable clean-up. I now believe bakers and anyone else who makes pastry dough are powerful, wonderful people. Making pastry is not for sissies.


Six chunks of dough, after I made a large round lump and cut it into pieces. I was awash in flour.


The first pasty patty, in preparation.


The dough, filled with 1-1/2 cups of the filling mixture. Did I mention this is a HUGE recipe? Why didn’t I figure out a way to reduce the recipe? Dunno. Maybe next time.


My favorite wife caught me in the act of rolling out the dough. Pretty classy apron, huh?


On the next-to-last pasty, I glanced up; I do that sometimes, just to see who’s watching me.


And here they are; monstrous in size and showing their wounds. I was supposed to make small slits across them. Instead, I made deep gashes.


And here they are in the oven, browning as they prepare to be eaten in the near-term.


Poor babies bled from the deep lacerations; I don’t know slit from evisceration.


Trying to show how big these monsters are; I’m holding my hand next to one of them for scale.


Finally, taking a bite, trying both ketchup and whole-grain dijon.

OK.  They’re done. We’ve eaten one (one is enough for two).  There are others in the freezer to be eaten another day.  So, how was it?

It was not bad.  But being a spice freak, it was a bit bland for my taste.  Even eating it with a bit of ketchup or a bit of mustard left me thinking it was a bit bland.  I jazzed it up a tad with some Sriracha sauce, but if I were to do it again, I’d spice up the filling.  Some Indian spices, perhaps, maybe a jalapeño, possibly some chile powder or cumin….but that would take it far afield from its “authentic” roots in northern Michigan (Jennifer, can you verify?  And while you’re at it, are they traditionally eaten cold with ketchup?  And what’s your preferred term for someone who is from Michigan: Michiganian, Michigander, Michiganer, Michiganese, Michigine, Wolverine, Michiganite, or something else?)

Well, that’s done. I still have to eat foods from the Pacific Northwest and must have some “Floribbean” food and, of course, I will make Joyce’s oyster pie (if I can find a quart of oysters…no luck at Tom Thumb, ALbertson’s, and Kroger this week). And there’s more. Much more. I wish food didn’t love to stick with me as much as I like to stick with food.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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3 Responses to Cornish Pasties

  1. Ah, Larry, you may know the way I think!

  2. Larry Zuckerman says:

    Next stop Cornish G Strings.

  3. Trish says:

    Beautiful blow by blow photos here, John. Did you say Jalapeños to spice it up? May not be authentic, but one must do what they must do…

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