About this recipe:A vegetarian version of Cornish pasties made with a spiced, wholemeal pastry crust, gets an extra exotic touch from a filling of lightly curried red lentils, potatoes and peas. Serve warm with mango chutney and a crisp, green salad.
150g plain wholemeal flour
150g plain white flour
½ tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground cumin
100g white vegetable fat, chilled and diced
1 tbsp semi-skimmed milk, to glaze
125g red split lentils
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 cardamom pods, seeds only
1 tsp garam masala
200g potatoes, peeled and cut into small dice
175g shelled or frozen peas
½ tsp ground cinnamon
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First, make the spiced pastry. Combine both the flours, the coriander, cumin and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Rub in the fat, using your fingertips, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Slowly stir in 4–6 tbsp cold water to form a soft dough. (If preferred, the pastry can be made in a food processor.) Shape the dough into a ball, wrap in cling film and chill for about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, put the lentils in a saucepan with half the onion, the garlic, cardamom seeds and garam masala. Add 800ml boiling water. Bring back to the boil, stirring, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until the lentils are very soft and most of the liquid is absorbed.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. Drain the lentils and return them to the pan. Stir in the potatoes, peas, remaining onion and cinnamon. Simmer over a low heat for 2–3 minutes to ‘dry’ the mixture and thaw the peas, if frozen. Season to taste and set aside.
Cut the pastry into quarters. Roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to a circle that is about 20cm in diameter, using a plate as a guide. Each time add the trimmings to the next piece of pastry before rolling out, in order to use it all.
Divide the the filling evenly among the pastry rounds, spreading it down the centre. Brush a little water round the edges, then bring up the edges over the top and pinch together to seal. Crimp to give the traditional pasty shape. Continue until each pasty is shaped.
Place the pasties on a baking sheet and lightly brush with milk. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 180°C/gas 4 and continue baking for a further 35–40 minutes until the pastry is lightly browned. Leave to stand for about 15 minutes before serving warm.
Lentils have an advantage over other pulses in that they do not require soaking before cooking. Red lentils are used in Indian dahl recipes because they reduce to a mush during cooking, but green Puy lentils, from France, which hold their shape, are also suitable for this recipe.
I didn't make the pastry from fresh, used jus roll. I actually like it, although without the ingredients in the pastry, it cannot be called "spicy" I'm sure with it, it probably is. Makes an excellent base to add whichever herbs and spices! - 02 Feb 2016