I admit that I’m at a disadvantage when it comes to British pub food – the main reason for that, obviously, is that I was raised in the US, where pubs are a bit of a novelty and tend to hang onto hokey Irish stereotypes. So when Hardie Grant Books sent me a lovely copy of Great Pub Food, I was pretty excited: this was my opportunity to try some classic British pub food with a modern sensibility.
I was really impressed by the selection of recipes in the book. Fortunately, some of the recipes would be more likely found in an upscale gastropub (making a more sophisticated twist of some British classics – various steak recipes, prawn cocktail rings), which is why I’m excited to try most of the recipes! Although the book promotes itself as simple pub fare, there are plenty of recipes in the book that I would be perfect comfortable I was really eager to try this recipe for vegetable pasties – I’ve always been far more willing to try my hand at sweet pastry, rather than savoury and I’m constantly trying to put more vegetables into my diet (so not a veggie kind of person). The one note of caution I would bring is that this is definitely a recipe which requires fresh herbs: using dried ones would not make the pasties nearly as nice!
Vegetable Pasties (adapted from Great Pub Food)
Ingredients (for pastry)
150g chilled butter
300g plain flour
Ingredients (for filling)
1 finely diced onion
2 finely diced potatoes
1 finely diced stick of celery
1 finely diced parsnip
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
Crumble bread and cubed butter together until it resembles bread crumbs. Slowly mix in the 1/3 cup of water. Once it achieves the consistency of dough, place in the fridge overnight to chill.
Using your fingers, bring the sides of the circle together and gently seal by wetting the edges with water. Place on a baking sheet and poke steam holes in the top.
I love how adaptable this recipe seems to be – you can substitute the vegetables and herbs to taste – I think next time, I might go with a bit of curry seasoning!
I’m really excited to try more recipes from this book and I’d most definitely recommend it.
‘Great Pub Food by Rachael Lane, £14.99, Paperback, Hardie Grant, available at http://hardiegrant.co.uk/. I was provided with a free copy of this to review, but all opinions are my own!