Mar 30, 2010

{butternut squash, chicken and parmesan pasties}

recipe source: The Kitchn
I am currently on a butternut squash kick which works out nicely since it has been in season. Sadly its on its way out, but I have definitely gotten my fill of it this past month beginning with these: butternut squash, chicken and parmesan pasty (pronounced: past-ee). I found the original recipe over at The Kitchn and have altered it slightly by adding in some chicken.

Pasties originated in the UK as a food for miners since it was a simple hand held pie usually filled with beef, potatoes, onion and turnips. According to Wikipedia, the miners could easily hold the folded pastry with their dirty hands and eat most of it, discarding the last little bits. The thrown away bits were said to please the knockers, mischievious spirits who were believed to play practical jokes on the miners by stealing their tools. Traditionally, the ingredients are placed inside the pastry dough uncooked and are then steamed inside as it cooks. This recipe is not exactly true to the original as most ingredients are cooked prior to placing inside the pastry.

More after the jump

These guys were a lot of fun to eat and tasted delicious. The dough was very good and crisped up nicely in the oven. The mixture made a lot so I actually had leftover mixture which I used for a lasagna that I'll post later. I was able to get one extra small pasty out of this making five in total. The fifth was consumed for breakfast by me! So very good. You can serve these with some marinara sauce or have them plain. Either way they are great. I foresee a variety of fillings working very nicely with this method of cooking.

{Butternut Squash, Sage, and Parmesan Pasties}

(Makes 2 large or 4-5 small Pasties)



1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt

2/3 cup chilled butter, cut into small pieces
6-8 tablespoons ice water


8 ounces butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 cm cubes
1 - 1 1/2 chicken breasts, cubed
1 medium red onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon sage, chopped
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt to taste

Freshly ground pepper to taste
Olive oil


To make dough

Sift flour and salt into a large bowl. Using a pastry blender or knife, cut butter into flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add 1 tablespoon of ice water at a time, gently tossing between additions, until the dough just holds together. Shape dough into a ball and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before rolling out.

Before rolling out the dough, let it soften slightly so that it is malleable but still cold. On a lightly floured surface, roll it out to 1/8-inch thick. Cut out two to four circles using a plate or bowl as a guide.

To make pasties

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Cut butternut squash in half, brush with olive oil and season with whatever you'd like. I've used basil, rosemary or in this case sage before. Cook your butternut squash at 400°F for about 30 - 40 minutes or until fork soft. This makes it a lot easier to cut into cubes and peel off skin.

Next, cook your chicken with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Feel free to flavor with some garlic during this step if you like.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a large bowl, combine butternut squash, chicken, onion, garlic, sage, parsley and Parmesan cheese.

Spoon mixture over half of each dough round, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge. Sprinkle well with salt and pepper.

Brush the edges of the dough with a little olive oil. With cool hands, fold the pastry over and crimp the edges. Try to get it as sealed as possible. Cut a small slit in the top of each pasty. Brush all over with olive oil and grate fresh Parmesan cheese on top.

Bake until golden and cooked through, about 40 minutes. Serve hot or warm.

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