I came across these meat and egg pasties while I was going through a 1970’s cookbook that had some great picnic ideas. Similar to a Scotch egg filling, I liked how the meat encased the boiled egg within the pastie pastry. I chose a lamb mince seasoned with classic sausagemeat spices and herbs. Other minces would work just as well, like pork with shredded apple or beef with caramelised onions. The pastie is quite huge, so I recommend slicing the pastie when it is cold and serving it on a large platter with some mint sauce on the side. Of course, you can eat them whole, but definitely, one pastie per person is more than enough!
What is a pastie?
Pasties are a combination of buttery shortcrust turnover-shaped pastry and tender pieces of beef or lamb and root vegetables, typically swede and potatoes finished off with onion. For this style of traditional pastie, I have also added a gluten-free traditional lamb & mint pastie recipe to my blog for you to try out with some information and history regarding Cornish pasties.
Coming up with your own filling ideas is fun, but if you need some inspiration, there are some interesting ones to choose from.
- Cheddar cheese and onion
- Curry (similar to a samosa filling)
- Baked beans and sausages
- Mediterranean vegetables
- Lentil and vegetables
- Mexican chilli
- Smoked fish and cheese
- Mushrooms and cheese
What is crimping?
This is the method used to seal the pastry edge and ensure the filling doesn’t leak out. The best way to describe crimping is by twisting and pressing the pastry edges along the longest side of the pastie. It takes some practice and can be a bit tricky to perfect when dealing with gluten-free pastry as it can tear or rip easily. If it proves to be too hard to crimp, they can be sealed pressed down with a fork.
GLUTEN-FREE LAMB & EGG PASTIES
For the pastie pastry:
- 600g store-bought or homemade gluten-free flour blend
- 2 teaspoons xanthan gum or 4 teaspoons psyllium husk powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 100g butter, chilled, cubed
- 2 eggs at room temperature
- 280ml – 320ml iced water
- an extra egg for the egg wash
For the lamb & egg filling:
- 4 eggs, organic if possible
- 600g lamb mince
- 4 tablespoons store-bought or homemade gluten-free breadcrumbs
- 4 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped finely
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped finely
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder (eg: English hot mustard)
- 1 teaspoon mace powder or nutmeg powder
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
Mint sauce, to serve
1. Prepare the pastie pastry first by mixing the flour, salt and xanthan gum together in a medium bowl.
2. Add the chilled cubed butter and rub it into the flour mixture using your fingertips.
3. Add the eggs, one at a time. Mix it into the crumbled flour mixture using a wooden spoon.
4. Add the chilled water gradually, mixing well between each addition. Once the pastry starts to come together as a ball, cover the bowl with a tea towel and set it aside for 30 minutes to rest.
5. Preheat the oven to 200 C/400 F.
6. While the pastry is resting, start to prepare the filling by boiling 4 eggs for 8 to 10 minutes.
7. Blend the lamb mince, breadcrumbs and all the seasonings together. Use your hands towards the end to massage the meat in well.
8. Peel the shells from the boiled eggs and allow them to cool down.
9. Divide the meat into four equal-sized portions. Flatten 3/4 of the portion into a round disc shape. Place the boiled egg in the middle.
10. Place the remaining 1/4 of the meat portion on top of the egg and bring the bottom meat portion up around the sides forming a meatball. The meat should cover the boiled egg completely. Shape it with slightly wet hands.
11. Set the meatballs to one side and start rolling out 4 equal-sized pastry portions into circles measuring approximately 20cm in diameter. These are large pasties to accommodate the boiled egg.
12. Place the assembled meatball in the centre of the pastry circle.
13. Brush the pastry edges with some water and bring one side of the pastry circle over to the other side, pressing down along the edges.
14. To finish off the pastry edges, start by folding the corner into the pastry edge. Then continue folding and pressing until you reach the opposite corner.
15. Place the pasties on a lined tray with baking paper and brush each pastie thoroughly with egg wash.
16. Bake the pasties for 10 minutes, then turn the oven temperature down to 180 C/350 F and continue to cook for another 30 minutes, or until the pastry appears golden brown.
17. Serve the pasties warm or allow them to cool down completely before slicing the pasties and arranging them on a large platter. Serve them with mint sauce and a bowl of fresh salad.
Makes 4 large pasties
If you prefer to make smaller pasties, use small boiled quail eggs instead of chicken eggs. Make the pastry circles smaller aiming at 10cm in diameter. This should give you at least 8 small pasties.