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The Cornish Pasty (Pie)

Being a Yooper,  I grew up on pasties.  All of my grandmothers and great grandmothers made them often and all of them tasted a little bit different.  I won't say which are my favorite, but the lard crust that Maima made was by far the flakiest.  A satisfying and filling meal, the pasty was brought to the Copper Country by the Cornish who worked in the copper mines a century ago.  Trips to England and our six months in Melbourne, showed us the varied ways pasties are made.  Here, not many venture beyond the traditional beef, rutabaga, potato, onion and (sometimes) carrot version.

While I have eaten a lot of pasties in my life, I have never made them.  Perhaps because of the ubiquity in this area, or maybe because, while they are very good, all the chopping (or chipping, as I will explain later) takes a considerably long time.

This version is taking a short cut, not on the chipping, but on the crust.   Pasties traditionally have their own flaky crust (the best part in my opinion) but I made a pasty pie and used used frozen pie crusts.  Ok, so that is two shortcuts.  I found this recipe on line from a Cornish woman's blog.  I used her recipe for the filling, but I added carrot 

I want to acknowledge that we are still in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic - about 5 weeks in.  Stay safe everyone.  Stay in if you can.... and cook!

Cornish Pasty Pie (2 pies)


4 Frozen Deep Dish Pie Crusts, thawed
2 lb round steak or skirt steak, cut into bite sized pieces
1 rutabaga (aka swede), chipped*
2 carrots, chipped*
1 large yellow onion, chopped fine
About 6-8 small potatoes, chipped*
Dried parsley
salt and pepper

*never cube, chop or dice the rutabaga, carrot or potato.  Chip it from the whole into small pieces, like whittling a small piece of wood, I suppose.  See Figure 1.

Figure 1:  Chip,don't Chop!

  • Preheat over to 425 degrees F.
  • Fill the (2) pie shell as follows:  1)  lay the rutabaga on the bottom of the pie shell; 2) layer the carrot on top of rutabaga; 3) layer half of the potato;  4) sprinkle with salt, pepper and dried parsley;  5) layer half of the onion;  6) layer the remainder of potato;  7) add more salt, pepper, and parsley; 8) layer the remaining onion, 9) add a little more more salt, pepper, and parsley; 10) finally, layer the beef on top.
  • The pies should be heaping (see Figure 2).
  • Carefully lay the other 2 pie shells over the top of the bottom.  Crimp if needed to make sure it is sealed.
  • Cut a slit in the top of the crust
  • Bake in preheated over for 10 minutes to set the crust.
  • Turn the over down to 375 degrees F and bake for 90 minutes.
  • Remove pies from oven and cool on baking rack (Figure 3)
  • Enjoy (Figure 4)

Figure 2. Ready to Top and Bake
Figure 3.  Cooling the Pasty Pies
Figure 4.  It's not necessarily pretty, but it tasted amazing