Chicken and vegetable Cornish pasties

Chicken and vegetable Cornish pasties

Dean Cambray

With its semicircular shape and crimped edge, the Cornish pasty must be one of the best known pies in the world. Legend has it that they were first eaten by tin miners, who had to spend long days down in the mines without returning to the surface for lunch. The crimped edge acted as a sort of handle, and the miners could munch away at the rest of the pasty and discard the handle that had come into contact with their dirty (sometimes arsenic-contaminated) hands.

Traditional Cornish pasties are made from beef, onion and potato, but these days they come with all sorts of funky fillings. These chicken pasties are not strictly authentic, but they are light and tasty. I think the shortcrust pastry is much nicer than the traditional tough pastry. You won’t want to throw any of it away.


Quantity Ingredient
1 medium potato, peeled and finely diced
1 medium carrot, finely diced
1 medium parsnip, finely diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 leek, finely diced
1 stick celery, finely diced
1/2 cup peas
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup homemade breadcrumbs
freshly ground black pepper
400g chicken breast, cut into small dice
1kg Savoury shortcrust pastry
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten with 4 tablespoons milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC and lightly oil a baking tray.
  2. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil. Add the potato, carrot and parsnip and return to the boil. Turn off the heat and leave to stand for 10 minutes before draining.
  3. Heat the oil in a heavy-based frying pan and sweat the onion, garlic, leek and celery for 5 minutes, or until they soften. Add the potato, carrot, parsnip and peas and stir well. Fold in the parsley and breadcrumbs and season generously.
  4. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured work surface to 0.5 cm thickness. Cut into 15 cm circles and place a generous spoonful of filling in the centre of each. Brush the edge of each circle with the egg wash and fold over to enclose the filling. Press to seal then crimp the edges together. Use the sharp point of a knife to make a small incision in each pasty to let out the steam. Brush with egg wash then lift the pasties onto the prepared baking tray. Bake for 20 minutes until crisp and golden.
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