Creole Meat Pies

9c5630e0-49f1-4538-8fa5-dd5963542cd3_zps2dc9fec0When I was a kid, my God-Sister (whom I adored), and her now Hubby, would come up to Santa Barbara from Los Angeles to go to the beach and visit. They would often come bearing gifts. Not just any gifts, but my favorite kinds of gifts; THE ONES I CAN EAT! Her husband Alan would walk in behind her carrying a large white box labeled “Portos” on top. That box was filled with glorious “Meat Pies and Potato Balls.” Although these decadent pastries are probably intended to be appetizers, they often ended up being a meal for the family, since they were so good we’d eat until we were stuffed! (They held such a special place in my heart, I had them served at my wedding!)

Later, as an adult, I moved to South Florida and was suddenly surrounded by the Cuban community. I had a chance to sample different families’ take on this typical Cubano treat. This is my version, which puts a twist on the filling, pulling together many of the Caribbean cuisines, while still being as tasty as ever! Give it a try, they are easier than they look, and will please just about any palate!

Ingredients:

2 tsp coconut oil
1 large shallot, minced
5-6 green onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp Allspice
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp chili powder (ground red pepper, cayenne, or chili)
1 lb ground Sirloin (DON’T substitute anything more fatty. It’ll be very greasy)
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/4 tsp ginger juice (or finely minced fresh ginger)
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, minced
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/4 tsp black pepper
 
2 rolled sheets puff pastry (1 box)
 
3 tbsp white sugar
3 tbsp water
 
1 egg yolk (Save the white for a breakfast scramble!)
2 tbsp water
 

Method:

* The night before, move puff pastry from freezer to refrigerator to defrost.*

Filling:

1.  Heat coconut oil in  a large pan over medium heat. Add shallots and green onions, and sauté for 3 mins, stirring constantly. Add garlic (and if using fresh ginger, add that now with garlic), and sauté for 1 minute, again stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn.

feb289a0-6784-4b58-8263-a8a9ea82a59e_zpsa2f065d82.  Add allspice,  cinnamon, and chili powder. Stir constantly for 30 seconds.

3.  Add Sirloin, and break it up with your spatula. Stir in tomato paste. Sprinkle parsley and ginger juice over sirloin, and stir to combine. Lower heat to medium low and cook for 5 mins.

4.  Remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature.

Simple Syrup:

Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer just until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to come to room temp.

Puff pastry: (At this point, Heat oven to 375⁰.)

(CHEFS TIP: Try to work quickly because the puff pastry is harder to work with as it gets warm.)

1. Remove one sheet of puff pastry from the refrigerator. Gently unfold it. You’ll see it has 2 lines from where it was folded, dividing it into 3 sections. Using a pairing knife, cut it down those lines.

b3b7c7e5-b763-4c84-842c-d842776e4348_zps6fae17ff6f96cd19-7f64-4633-8dbc-25b3109ecc62_zpsf5f7c66f

2. Working with one of the pieces as a time, place it between two pieces of plastic wrap. Using a rolling pin, roll from the center up 1x. Spin the piece 1/4 turn, repeat. Spin another 1/4 turn, repeat. Then one last time.
90fbd8d7-6de7-4614-83aa-82079bdd121c_zpsbc6b4bc7

3.  Now, cut that piece into 6 or 8 pieces. Its up to you. 7d3e3831-a152-404a-9627-239188424da6_zpsff46eeeb

4.  Place 1/2 of them onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Spoon 1-2 tbsp of Sirloin filling onto these pieces.ae7a9a74-5da0-4c97-b5f0-48bd0b8384ba_zps9bce613d

5. Using a pastry brush (or your finger), brush a bit of water around the edge of the square (around sirloin). Place the top piece over the sirloin, and using a fork, press the edges closed. Repeat with the remaining puff pastry that is cut, as well as the remaining sheet that is still in the fridge.67523b5c-2928-4e82-8f3e-88de57dae95b_zps013fb551Topping:

1.  Combine yolk and water with a fork in a small bowl. Set aside.

2.  Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of all the pies with a little of the simple 3105e7d2-222f-453c-887e-e1b6e2ea0f91_zpsfc06e8f7syrup.

3.  Using the same pastry brush, brush the tops of each of the pies with the egg wash. Discard any remaining egg wash.

4.  Place into the oven and bake 15-20 mins, or until tops are golden brown.

Eat immediately!

(*CHEF’S TIP: To reheat any leftover, heat them in the toaster oven to keep them crisp.)29f5a6fe-ee1c-4d9b-b67e-36dd8ed91cae_zps2e7ecc4c

Creole Meat Pies, (Recipe without photos)

Ingredients:

2 tsp coconut oil
1 large shallot, minced
5-6 green onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp Allspice
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp chili powder (ground red pepper, cayenne, or chili)
1 lb ground Sirloin (DON’T substitute anything more fatty. It’ll be very greasy)
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/4 tsp ginger juice (or finely minced fresh ginger)
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, minced
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/4 tsp black pepper
 
2 rolled sheets puff pastry (1 box)
 
3 tbsp white sugar
3 tbsp water
 
1 egg yolk (Save the white for a breakfast scramble!)
2 tbsp water
 

Method:

* The night before, move puff pastry from freezer to refrigerator to defrost.*

Filling:

1.  Heat coconut oil in  a large pan over medium heat. Add shallots and green onions, and sauté for 3 mins, stirring constantly. Add garlic (and if using fresh ginger, add that now with garlic), and sauté for 1 minute, again stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn.

2.  Add allspice,  cinnamon, and chili powder. Stir constantly for 30 seconds.

3.  Add Sirloin, and break it up with your spatula. Stir in tomato paste. Sprinkle parsley and ginger juice over sirloin, and stir to combine. Lower heat to medium low and cook for 5 mins.

4.  Remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature.

Simple Syrup:

Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer just until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to come to room temp.

Puff pastry: At this point, Heat oven to 375⁰.

(CHEFS TIP: Try to work quickly because the puff pastry is harder to work with as it gets warm.)

1. Remove one sheet of puff pastry from the refrigerator. Gently unfold it. You’ll see it has 2 lines from where it was folded, dividing it into 3 sections. Using a pairing knife, cut it down those lines.

2. Working with one of the pieces as a time, place it between two pieces of plastic wrap. Using a rolling pin, roll from the center up 1x. Spin the piece 1/4 turn, repeat. Spin another 1/4 turn, repeat. Then one last time.

3.  Now, cut that piece into 6 or 8 pieces. Its up to you. Place 1/2 of them onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Spoon 1-2 tbsp of Sirloin filling onto these pieces.

4. Using a pastry brush (or your finger), brush a bit of water around the edge of the square (around sirloin). Place the top piece over the sirloin, and using a fork, press the edges closed. Repeat with the remaining puff pastry that is cut, as well as the remaining sheet that is still in the fridge.

Topping:

1.  Combine yolk and water with a fork in a small bowl. Set aside.

2.  Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of all the pies with a little of the simple syrup.

3.  Using the same pastry brush, brush the tops of each of the pies with the egg wash. Discard any remaining egg wash.

4.  Place into the oven and bake 15-20 mins, or until tops are golden brown.

Eat immediately.

(*CHEF’S TIP: To reheat any leftover, heat them in the toaster oven to keep them crisp.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s