Andy Bates’ Cornish Pasty

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“Regarded as the national dish of Cornwall and iconic to England, the pasty is right up there with all major British dishes. Made for miners to take down the mines, the pastry was used as a barrier so the miners’ dirty hands would not touch the meat and was then discarded. Now it’s one of the most important parts of the meal. I say meal because it is very substantial and filling. The debate rages on as to whether the pastry should be made with shortcrust or rough puff. Personally I use rough puff because it gives a richer, flakier, more buttery finish.” Andy Bates

Serves 4



For the pastry

300g strong plain flour (bread flour)

1 tsp salt

250g butter, at room temperature but not soft

175-225ml cold water

For the filling

1 medium swede, peeled, cut into quarters and thinly sliced

1 medium potato, peeled and cut in very small dice

100g minced beef (good fat content)

350-400g ribeye of beef, cut into finger-sized strips

1 medium onion, peeled and chopped

Salt and white pepper

2 free range egg yolks, beaten, for brushing pastry



  1. To make the pastry, sift the flour and salt in a medium bowl. Cut the butter into roughly 2cm cubes, add to the flour and mix with your fingertips, making sure there are still small pieces of butter throughout. Make a well in the centre and slowly add the water, stirring until you have a dough (you may not need to use all the water). Wrap in cling film and rest in the fridge for an hour minimum.
  2. Preheat the oven to 190˚C and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. On a lightly floured surface, divide the pastry into 4 and roll each quarter into a rough oval 1/4–1/2 cm thick. (As you roll you’ll see the butter has not completely mixed through; do not be alarmed as this will create a perfect buttery rough puff once cooked.)
  3. Take a quarter of the potato and lay in one half of the pastry, repeat with the swede, ribeye, minced beef and then finally the diced onions. Season everything well with salt and white pepper.
  4. Fold the pastry over with your hands cupping the edge, then cut around to give a semi-circle. Take a corner of the edge and then fold over and pinch. Repeat to form the crimp around the pasty.
  5. Repeat to make four pasties. Place on the lined baking tray, brush with egg wash and bake for 40-45 minutes until golden brown. Allow to rest for 30 minutes before eating.

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