Friday, April 13, 2012

Author Recipe: Cornish Pasty

Written by Nell Dixon

Cornish Pasty

Tradition is that the pasty shape represents the quarter moon with blunted horns. This is the emblem of Astarte, Goddess of the Phoenicians who came to Cornwall to trade tin.

1lb (450g) shortcrust pastry12oz (350g) chuck or stewing steak (diced)
4 medium potatoes2oz (50g) butter
1 onion - peeled1 egg - beaten (for glazing)
4oz (100g) swedeSalt and pepper to taste


Roll out the pastry to ¼" (5mm) thick and cut into four 6"(15cm) circles ( larger if you want a man-sized pasty - you can use a dinner plate as a template). Cut the potato in small cubes or flakes directly on to the pastry. Next cover this with the swede (if you are American - rutabaga) then add some of the onion, diced up and the meat. Add a dot of butter and season well. Dampen the edges of the pastry and fold in half to form a semi-circle. Pinch and turn the edge over to make a rope like effect (this bit is quite thick - the tin miners used to use this bit as a kind of handle to eat the main part of the pasty without getting dirt on their food and they would throw that bit away). Some people jab a knife into the top to make a 'steam-hole'. Brush with beaten egg and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake, in a hot oven (425°F-Gas mark 7, for 10 minutes then lower the temperature setting to 350°F-Gas mark 4 for 30 minutes.

Eat, hot or cold.

Easter Holiday - Blurb

Cornish farmer, Noah Penwarren is sworn off city girls, especially deceitful ones. Posy Carmichael is a city girl through and through. When romantic sparks start to fly will Posy’s secret end their Easter romance before it’s even begun?

Excerpt from Easter Holiday

Posy flinched as she eased the car forward into the rut she’d been trying to avoid. Behind her, the tent poles and pegs clattered and rattled as she jolted along to the gap in the boundary. She placed the car in reverse and backed into the entrance of the field ready to turn around.

The rear wheels skidded on the muddy grass. Posy changed into first gear and hoped she would manage to get out ahead of the tractor she could hear approaching down the narrow track. To her dismay the wheels of the car span around as she revved the engine, failing to gain any purchase on the soft ground.

“Noooooo.” She moaned and gave the accelerator a last desperate nudge. A fine spray of mud shot from the back of the car to coat the back window.

The blue nose of a tractor chugged into view and stopped in front of her. Posy sucked in a breath. The way her day was headed she’d probably get told off now for trespassing. She lowered the window as the driver of the tractor dismounted from his cab and came over to her.

“I take it you’re stuck?” The man bent so his head was level with her window.

“I was trying to turn round.”

Posy had a glimpse of dark blue eyes and a rugged jaw before the owner of the tractor stood leaving her with a view of green farm overalls.

“I’ll pull you out with the tractor.” His voice sounded resigned as if he were used to tugging stranded motorists from the entrance to his fields every day of the week.

Posy opened the car door and went to get out. Her shoe sank in the soft earth, with a soft, squelching sound.

“Do you want me to help?” She wobbled on one leg trying to extricate her foot from the sticky gloop.

“You’re fine. Just stay in the car and put it in neutral with the handbrake off when I tell you.”

She slipped back into her seat and tried to scrape the mud from her shoe onto the car mat. The previously unsmiling lines of his mouth had now softened into the hint of a grin as he began to attach the rope to the front of her car. Clearly, he found her encounter with the mud amusing. If she hadn’t felt so mortified at being stupid enough to get both lost and stuck Posy might have considered her rescuer attractive.

(C) Nell Dixon 2012

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