Archive for August, 2010

Presidential Pasties

Helicopters are cool.  I’m pretty sure that’s obvious.  And, well, the President’s helicopter is the shit.  Yah, that’s right, last week the Stat Man and I attended a Marine One ceremony on the south lawn of the white house and as you can tell I have every intention of bragging about it.  It’s the sort of thing you need to brag about; the President and large machinery1.

The ceremony itself is fairly simple.  The helicopter lands.  A marine opens the helicopter doors.  The President boards (in this case with Secretary Shinseki).  Reggie Love, his baseball bat, and other West wingers hop on.  The Marine seals it all up.  The helicopter takes off.  Over.  Done.  Andrew’s Air force base here they come.  So damn cool.

Anyhow before I go play with a Tonka truck, I have a suggestion for the President.  I know, I know, I have absolutely no business offering advice to the President.  He has professionals for that.  But here’s an amateur thought anyway.  Pasties:  The Official Meal of Marine One.

Okay.  I’ll admit it.  The short ride from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to Maryland is not meal-worthy.  But how else am I supposed to link the presidential helicopter with the Cornish pastries we made last week?  This is the best I could come up with.  So there you have it.  Reggie, leave the tide pen at home.  And UP’ers, be proud.  I nominate the self-contained pastry for official duty.

Pasties

Pastry Dough

3 Cups flour

½ tsp salt

1 Cup butter

7 Tbsp water

2 Tbsp extra liquid if dough is too dry

Mix together flour and salt, then add butter (cut in ½ in cubes).  Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter (a fork works if you don’t have a cutter) until pieces of butter are no larger than hazelnuts but no smaller than peas.  Add water until there is no flour left to incorporate.  The dough should resemble gravel—yum.  If the dough is too dry and looks like fresh grated Parmesan cheese, add the extra liquid.  Knead the dough just enough so it all comes together, and shape it into a fat log.  There you have your dough.

Next, cut 1-2 inch thick slices of dough from the log and roll each into a large circle, perhaps 6-8 inches in diameter.  The size of the circle depends mostly on how large and full you would like your pasty.  Keep in mind the pasty will be approximately ½ the size of your circle.

Filling

1 Chuck Roast cubes

1 Potato cubed

2 Carrots chopped

As many peas as you think are fantastic

1/3 Cup red wine

Olive Oil

Salt

Pepper

Start by chopping the beef into small cubes, and combine with the other chopped vegetables and peas.  Pour just enough red wine over the mix to make it wet, and mix around.  Add a couple tablespoons of olive oil, and season the filling with salt and pepper.

Next, take one of your circles of pastry dough and place a good mound of filling on one half of the circle.  Fold the empty half over the filling and press shut.  Repeat until all of the pastries are filled.  If you would like a nice sheen on your pastries brush an egg wash on top of the filled pasties.

Place the filled pasties on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for about 45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.


1 In other large machinery news, on our last trip to NH the Stat Man’s dad let us drive his New Holland tractor.  I officially graduated from flat ground to slight slope.  Um, watch out hillside grass.