January 13, 2010

Cornish & Pumpkin Pasties

To finish with my Harry Potter party recipes, today I have two more recipes, one savory and one sweet: Cornish pasties and pumpkin pasties. I remember back when I first read the Harry Potter books, I always wondered what pumpkin pasties looked like and how they tasted.

Well after having made them, now I know :). Pumpkin pasties are like mini pumpkin pie bites, pleasant little after dinner desserts. Cornish pasties, on the other hand, are more of a during the main feast kind of dish. And no, they don't contain corn (many of my friends asked about that before eating them, I think they originated in Cornwall); they're flaky hand pies filled with beef and onions.

Cornish Pasties
adapted from evelyn/athens 

Short Crust Pastry
4 cups flour
1 cup shortening
6 tbsp ice water
1 tsp salt
8 oz ground beef
6 oz potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 medium onion, finely chopped
5 tbsp beef stock
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper

Short Crust Pastry: Mix 1/2 cup of the flour with the salt. Then mix in the shortening and ice water. Then with a fork, mix in the rest of the flour until it resembles a coarse meal. Add in more water if too dry, 1 tablespoon at a time. Gather the dough in a ball and refrigerate for an hour.

Mix the ground beef, potatoes, onion, thyme, salt, and pepper together. Stir in the beef stock to bind the filling. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll out the short crust pastry between two sheets of plastic wrap, or on a floured surface till 1/8 inch thick. Cut out ten 5-6 inch circles from the dough (I traced a 5 1/2 inch plate with a knife). Place some of the meat mixture at the center of each dough circle. Brush the edges of the dough circles with milk. Fold the circles in half and seal with a fork.

Transfer all the pasties to your lined baking sheet. Brush all of them with milk. Bake them in the oven at 400°F for 10 minutes, then lower the over to 350°F, and continue baking for 45-50 minutes, or until light brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 10.

Pumpkin Pasties
adapted from The Geeky Chef

1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
8 oz canned pumpkin or 1 cup fresh pumpkin
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp melted butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 can evaporated milk
your favorite pie crust pastry (enough for 1 crust)
1 egg, beaten (for an egg wash)

Preheat oven to 425°F. Combine the egg and sugar. Mix in the pumpkin, salt, butter, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg. Then add the evaporated milk, mixing well. Spray a 8x8 inch dish with nonstick spray and pour in your mixture. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, then turn down the oven to 350°F and bake for 45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean. Once done, let the filling cool completely on a wire rack.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Roll out your pastry very thin and cut out about thirty 3 1/4 inch circles. Place a small spoonfull of the cooled pumpkin mixture in the center of each circle. Add a bit of water to the egg to make an egg wash. Brush the border of each circle with the egg wash. Fold each circle in half and seal with a fork. Cut three small vent slits on the top of each pastie with a knife.

Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush each pastie with the egg wash. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until light golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack and serve at room temperature.

Makes 30.


  1. Those look amazing - and make me want to pick up my Harry Potter books and start reading them again!

  2. Chocolate Shavings: Thanks! Haha, yeah pumpkin pasties always automatically make me think of the Harry Potter books.

  3. Now I want to host my own Harry Potter party! Luckily I have the best friends in the world and we're planning one at the end of the month! Haha! we're going to use some of these recipes. They have great recipes over at www.the-leaky-cauldron.org too!

  4. Not a chocolate fan, but these look great

    Just thought I would let you know.
    We are having a just because giveaway
    $50 gift certificate.
    No need to folllow or twiiter, or blog, just say what you think you might like and leave a comment.


  5. Ari Lily Potter: Hope your party goes well! Theme parties are the best. Ooh, thanks for letting me know about the leaky cauldron :).

    Jeanette: Thanks for the comment! And thanks for letting me know about the giveaway.

  6. Cornish Pasties were made as meals for miners in England to take with them to work. The thick crimped part was easy to hold and could be discarded after being held with their dirty hands. Some pasties even had the main course and a dessert within them! Love' em. :3

  7. Anonymous: Ooh, thanks for the information. Interesting about the disposable crimped portion!

  8. I thought you'd like to see thins link about Cornish pasties...


  9. Do you think the unbaked pumpkin pasties could be frozen? I know you can freeze regular hand pies, but I'm not sure if it would do the custardy filling any favors. I want to make some of these for a Christmas gift for a big Harry Potter fan, but I have a three month old son and a lot of other baking to do.

  10. Mull: I think they could. I'm not sure if the alternative would be better, but maybe freeze already baked pasties and then they can be warmed up in the oven without defrosting or anything. I mean they do sell frozen pumpkin pies, so this should be doable.

  11. Can you use butter instead of shortening??
    I don't have shortening at the moment.