A true Cornish Pasty must be made with a minimum 12.5% beef content and 25% vegetable, which, in turn must consist of potato (sliced or diced), onion and swede. The ingredients are seasoned and then placed uncooked into shortcrust, puff, or rough puff pastry – formed into a ‘d’, and crimped along the edge. Glazing is optional.
It is often said that the crust is designed to be held in dirty fingers and then discarded uneaten. Another variant is the ‘Tinners’ pasty which has a sweet filling at one end, giving miners a complete meal in one tidy package.
Pasties are familiar bankside fodder. The carbohydrate hit is substantial and the pastry slow to digest, seeing off hunger but not necessarily leading to an urgent crouch in the woods.
Fishpool’s own favourite came not from Cornwall, and nor was it a true Cornish. Instead, it had a wonderfully spiced curry filling inside warm, meltingly soft pastry – and was found in a little Post Office in Aldermaston. Hmmmm….