Great British Bake Off Cornish pasties
Skill level: Bit of effort
Learn how to make The Great British Bake Off Cornish pasties with a short, crumbly pastry and packed with a traditional beef, potato and swede filling. These traditional Cornish pasties are approved by both Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood. They're perfect for beginners with a simple, step-by-step method you can have these classics whipped up in no time. This recipe makes 4 pasties, serving 4 people or 2 hungry people. It will take around 2hrs and 45 mins to make these pasties but they are certainly worth the wait. Leftovers can be wrapped in clingfilm and stored in the fridge for up to 2 days. Take off clingfilm and bake on a low heat in the oven until piping hot for the best reheating results.
IngredientsFor the pastry:
- 500g (1lb, 1oz) strong bread flour
- 120g (4oz) white shortening (semi-solid blended fats and oils)
- 5g (1tsp) salt
- 25g (1oz) margarine or butter
- 175ml (6fl oz) cold water
- 1 free-range egg, beaten with a little salt
For the Cornish pasties filling:
- 350g (12oz) good quality beef skirt, rump steak or braising steak
- 350g (12oz) waxy potato
- 200g (7oz) swede
- 175g (6oz) onion
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Knob of butter or margarine
You'll also need the following equipment:
- Large mixing bowl
- Cling film
- Baking tray
- Baking parchment or silicone paper (not greaseproof)
- Rolling pin
- Pastry brush
This recipe gives a tight rather than a sticky dough, so there’s no need to put flour or oil onto the surface when you roll it out.
- Stage one: Weigh out the ingredients.
- Tip the flour into the bowl and add the shortening, the salt, the margarine or butter and all of the water.
- Use a spoon to gently combine the ingredients. Then use your hands to crush everything together, bringing the ingredients into a dry dough.
- Put the dough onto a clean work surface.
- Work the dough to combine the ingredients properly. Use the heel of your hand to stretch and roll the dough. Roll it up, then turn it, stretch and roll it up again. Repeat this process for about 5 mins. The dough will start to become smooth as the shortening breaks down. If the dough feels grainy, keep working 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.
- When the dough is smooth, wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge to rest for 30-60 mins.
- Stage two: While the dough is resting, peel and cut the potato, swede and onion into cubes about 1cm 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, then put the filling to one side until the dough is ready.
- Lightly grease and line a baking tray with baking parchment or silicone paper.
- Preheat the oven to 170°C (150°C fan assisted)/ 325°F/gas mark 3.
- Stage three: 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. Cut the dough into four equal-sized pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a disk roughly 25cm/10in wide (roughly the same size as a dinner plate).
- Spoon a quarter of the filling onto each disk. Put the filling on one half, leaving the other half clear. Put a knob of butter or margarine on top of the filling.
- 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. When you’ve crimped along the edge, fold the end corners underneath.
- Put the pasties onto the baking tray and brush the top of each pasty with the egg and salt mixture. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for about 45 mins or until the pasties are golden brown. If your pasties aren’t browning, you can increase the oven temperature by 10°C for the last 10 mins of cooking time.
This recipe features in episode five of The Great British Bake Off, a 6-part series on BBC2, on at 8pm each Tuesday, from 17th August 2010.