My favorite thing about visiting my dad's hometown in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan?
Places like this:
I don't know the history of the delectable, hand-held meat pastry known as a pastie (pronounced PASS-TEE), other than miners like my grandpa used to take them in their lunches. All I know is my mom got the recipe from my dad's mother, and she's been making them (on special occasions) for my whole life, and the UP is the only place I have ever been where you can find a little pastie shop and sit down and enjoy one without all the work of making them.
It's a glorious thing, and even though I was seven weeks pregnant and nauseous out of my mind last summer when we were there, I stuffed my face with as many pasties as I could get my hands on.
I have to admit, though, they are best homemade, and the work it takes to make them is definitely worth it. So because I love you, I am sharing my mom's (or I guess you could say, my grandma's) pastie recipe with you.
For the crust:
3 c flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 c oil
1/2 c water
Mix and set aside until the filling is done.
For the filling:
3/4 lb ground beef (broken up)
3/4 lb ground turkey (broken up)
2 med onions (minced)
3 carrots (grated or chopped small)
5 med potatoes (minced)
1/2 med rutabaga (grated) - you can also use a turnip
1 tsp celery salt
Mix vegetables with 2 tsp salt, a little pepper, celery salt, and meat in a large bowl.
Divide dough into 6 equal portions. Roll to size of medium pie plate on lightly floured board. According to my mom, my grandma was actually able to roll the dough until it was paper thin. I'm not that talented. But you do want it as thin as possible.
Place 1/6 of filling on 1/2 of pastry. Draw the other half of pastry over filling and crimp or twist edges to seal filling. Prick with fork. Bake in 375-400 degree oven for one hour.
These are delicious smothered with gravy or your choice of condiment. I love them best straight up.
You can get creative and fill these suckers with pretty much whatever floats your boat.
As a side note, the last time I made pasties, I put half all-purpose and half whole-wheat flour in the crust. Very much against tradition. My grandmother was probably rolling in her grave.
But they sure tasted good.
Suddenly very hungry,
The Brown-Eyed Girl