Saturday, January 21, 2012

Cornish Pasty

Being Brits, we usually have our turkey at Christmas time.  And of course, one of the best things about a turkey is the left overs.  We do all the usual things with it of course, but the very last meal we get out of it is a large Cornish Pasty.  I'm not sure why we have this funny little treat in our family but it's been going on now for a long time.  For those of you unfamiliar with a Cornish Pasty is a very simple thing that was the staple of the tin miners down in Cornwall, who go back to the time of the Romans.

It's a round of pastry filled with small pieces of meat - in this case of course, turkey.  Then added are cooked rutabagas (Swede to the Brits,) turnip, potato, onion, a very little gravy and some simple herbs like sage and thyme, salt and lots of pepper.
The round is folded over to make a large "D," brushed with some egg, and it's baked in the oven until it's golden brown.  The miners used to wrap it in a cloth and take it down the mines with them for lunch.
I once had a friend, who in her early life had been a waitress in a cafe in Cornwall.  Diners there often used to order pasties, as they were the local speciality.  But the secret for those in the know was to wait for the London train to arrive as they delivered what they called Paddington Pasties - those made in London.  They were far superior to the locally made ones.

In the interest of full disclosure the picture is actually of a roast chicken and not a turkey!  Sorry about that!

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