Yesterday we ended up eating out instead of cooking. Yesterday we also recieved an invitation to go to Frank's brother's house for dinner on New Years Day.
Originally we were going to try a recipe for Cranberry Chicken for dinner tonight but all my Cranberries got eaten and I don't feel like leaving the house so instead I am making Thursday's meal for Try it Tuesday. I am going to include the information on the cookbook I am using as this was supposed to be my first meal utilizing all of the cookbooks I have on my kitchen shelves.
We had a lazy day, straightened the basement a bit and then laid around watching cheezy movies. Some crazy thing about some guys that were abducted by aliens (suppsosedly a true story) and then Bird on a Wire with Mel Gibson and Goldie Hawn.
When the movie was over Frank and I went into the kitchen to try our hand at homemade pasties. Pasties are a common dish in Northern Michigan and perhaps Minnesota or Wisconsin but I had never heard of them being served anywhere else so I did a little research and this is what I found from Wikipedia.
Migrating Cornish miners and their families (colloquially known as Cousin Jacks and Cousin Jennies) helped to spread pasties into the rest of the world during the 19th century. As tin mining in Cornwall began to decline, miners took their expertise and traditions to new mining regions around the world. As a result, pasties can be found in many regions, including:
- Many parts of Australia, including the Yorke Peninsula, which is the site of an annual pasty festival since 1973, which claims to be the world's largest. A clarification of the Protected Geographical Status ruling has confirmed that pasties made in Australia are still allowed to be called "Cornish Pasties".
- The Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In some areas, pasties are a significant tourist attraction, including an annual Pasty Fest inCalumet, Michigan in late June. Pasties in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan have a particularly unusual history, as a small influx ofFinnish immigrants followed the Cornish miners in 1864. These Finns (and many other ethnic groups) adopted the pasty for use in theCopper Country copper mines. About 30 years later, a much larger flood of Finnish immigrants found their countrymen baking pasties. The pasty has become strongly associated with Finnish culture in this area, and in the culturally similar Iron Range in northernMinnesota.
- Mineral Point, Wisconsin was the site of the first mineral rush in the USA during the 1830s. After lead was discovered in Mineral Point many of the early miners migrated to this south-western Wisconsin area from Cornwall. Those Cornish miners brought their skills working in the deep underground tin mines of Cornwall. They also brought their recipe and appetite for the pasty.
- A similar local history about the arrival of the pasty in the area with an influx of Welsh and Cornish miners, and its preservation as a local delicacy, is found in Butte, Montana.
- The Anthracite regions of northeastern Pennsylvania including the cities of Wilkes-Barre, Scranton, and Hazleton, had an influx of miners to the area in the 1800s and with them brought the pasty. To this day pasties are still a local favourite. In 1981, a Pennsylvania entrepreneur started marketing pasties under the brand name Mr. Pastie.
- The Mexican state of Hidalgo, and the twin silver mining cities of Pachuca and Real del Monte (Mineral del Monte), have notable Cornish influences from the Cornish miners who settled there with pasties being considered typical local cuisine. In Mexican Spanish, they are referred to as pastes.
- They are also popular in South Africa and New Zealand.
I guess pasties are more well known then I had thought. We love pasties and often go to Cousin Jennies Pasty Shop when visiting in Traverse City. So when I was thumbing through Wildlife Chef, a publication of the Michigan United Conservation Club, and came upon a recipe for venison pasties I knew I had to try them.
I had all the ingredients on hand as they are common staples around here and our friend, Kurt, had a very successful hunt this year and gifted us with tons of venison to enjoy. It you are not lucky enough to have a hunter in your household you can use beef instea of venison.
I pretty much followed the recipe as written except that I added garlic because isn't garlic a requirement when cooking dinner?? I also used my herbs from Gourmet Gardent that I was provided with for participating in an upcoming event. This makes 2 large pasties....enough for a family of 4. We had one for dinner and the other went into the freezer to be pulled out then next time life gets busy.
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl.
Place the pie crust into a pie pan to help hold it in shape as you fill it.
Place half of the filling ingredients onto half of the pie crust.
Fold the other half of the crust over the filling and pinch it shut.
Repeat with remaining ingredients.
Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 375* for an hour and 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and easily pierced with a fork.
They smelled as good as they tasted.
I let them bake the entire 70 minutes.
I am including my recipe for beef gravy in case you, like me, prefer your pasties drenched.
slightly adapted from MUCC
1 lb lean venison, any fat or white membrane removed, cut into small dice
2 med. potatoes, peeled and cut into small dice
2 carrots, scraped and cut into thin slices
1/4 of a small onion, minced
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced (I used 2 t. Gourmet Garden garlic paste)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 t. dried thyme, crushed
2 T. fresh parsley, chopped (I used Gourmet Garden)
4 t. water
2 (9") pie crusts
Combine all ingredients except for pie crusts in a large bowl and toss to combine thoroughly. Place on of the pie crusts into a pie pand and cover half the bottom with half of the filling ingredients. Flip th eother half of the pie crust over the top of the filling and fold and pinch the edges together. Do not vent the crusts. Remove to a parchment lined baking sheet and repeat with remaining ingredients. When both pasties are placed on the baking sheet bake in a preheated 375* oven for an hour and 10 minutes or until the vegetables are fork tender. Print Recipe
1/4 c. butter
1/4 c. flour
1 c. Beef Broth
salt and pepper to taste
Melt butter in a saucepan over med heat. Add flour. Cook and stir until flour is browned. Gradually whisk in the broth until gravy is smooth. Add more or less broth to get the consistency you like for your gravy. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Print Recipe