I'm always disappointed by the small selection of veggie pies and pasties on offer in the supermarkets. Not only is there not much choice, but they're often not very good, underfilled with anaemic fillings.
So I started to make my own.
Making pasties is a messy and fiddly job, and it takes a while. There's no getting around that. But if I make them in bulk, I can spend a couple of hours preparing a big batch, and freeze them ready for eating over the following weeks. The recipe below makes 12 pasties, but I usually double up the quantities. That way I've made six dinners for the two of us (two pasties each), which equates to a very reasonable amount of effort per meal (20 minutes). When we're ready to eat them, they can be cooked straight from the freezer.
Mixed Vegetable Pasties
For the pastry:
550g plain flour
250g butter (2 sticks)
For the filling:
1 small red onion
1 small sweet pointed pepper
5-6 large florets of broccoli
a handful of peas
200g cheese, grated
Black pepper and herbs to taste (I like a generous sprinkle of oregano)
- Cube the butter, and rub into the flour until no large pieces remain.
- Add cold water, a little at a time, until the pastry sticks together into a ball.
- Set aside the pastry while you prepare the filling.
- Chop the vegetables into small pieces (about 1cm cubed, at the largest), and steam for 2-3 minutes over boiling water.
- By your preferred method, roll out the pastry and cut 12 seven-inch circles. I find the easiest way is to divide the pastry into 12 lumps, and roll each one out between clingfilm sheets to the appropriate size.
- Divide the vegetables and cheese evenly between the twelve pastry circles. Add pepper and your choice of herbs, to taste.
- Brush around the edge of each circle with water, and fold in half to contain the vegetables. Press down the edges to seal.
- To bake immediately: Preheat the oven to 200°C and bake for 25 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Arrange uncooked pasties on baking sheets, and put in the coldest part of your freezer to quickly freeze them. Once they're fully frozen, you can move them to bags or boxes. To cook from frozen, they'll take about 30-35 minutes at 200°C (or you can thaw them overnight and follow the regular cooking instructions).