It’s been way too long since I posted on this blog as the usually hectic family life and busy work have taken over. But at least I come back with something D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S. Honest. So I hope you can forgive me.
These pastries are VERY moorish. There are 3 main contributors for the deliciousness of these meat pillows: the first one is the pastry, which is flaky, doughy and moist at the same time; the second one: using leftover slow-cooked beef, and the third: adding chorizo for extra zinginess.
I love pastry things. Any type of pastry, and my hips don’t lie 😉 Plus I am more of a savoury person than a sweet tooth… I am sure you can figure that out by the amount of sweet recipes in here (I think I have 2 so far, one of them a yoghurt-based breakfast so not really a ‘sweet treat’!). In essence, these are right up my street.
This pastry is not quite like the standard shortcrust or flaky pastries but somewhere in-between. I don’t know what to call it (in Portugal it’s called ‘massa tenra’, which roughly translates to ‘tender pastry’) but all you need to know is that the end consistency is flaky and the taste is buttery. You can fill it with whatever you wish and you can fry it or bake it, depending on how health-conscious you are feeling on the day. I have tried frying, baking and baking then frying and I have found this method gives the best results. To be honest, baking this pastry is a crime. I tried it because the thought of bypassing the deep-frying was very tempting (no added calories, no added fat, no kitchen stinking of oil, no hair stinking of oil, no clothes stinking of oil…). The issue with baking alone is that what makes the layers separate and the pastry end up with a flaky consistency is the hot oil. So start by baking them but end in the frier so you get the puffed-up effect and the extra flavour. Sorry, this is not a recipe for people who are on a low-fat diet!
The meat I used here was left over from a beef pot roast. As it was slow-cooked it became a real treat for these pastries making them packed with flavour. I minced it with a little chorizo and then made it into a wet-ish filling. Don’t be tempted to use a minced crumbly consistency, it won’t work as well. You will end up with a dry texture overall and begging for some gravy to dip these in!
You can use both the pastry and the filling base to make all sorts of pastries… I can think of tuna, chicken and pulled pork as delicious alternatives. You can vary the herbs and add tomato paste or curry powder. Or you can keep them vegetarian by using left-over stir-fry or steamed vegetables from another meal. A really yummy way to use leftovers!
|20 pastries||30 minutes|
|Cook Time||Passive Time|
|40 minutes||30 minutes|
A moorish flaky and moist pastry, part-baked, then fried and filled with left-over slow cooked beef and chorizo.
- 4 echallion shallots
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 150 ml milk
- 250 grams braised beef (or any other cooked meat)
- 50 grams chorizo
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg freshly grated
- 1 tsp Tabasco
- 2 tbsp dried chervil
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 1 tsp black pepper freshly ground
- Salt flakes to taste
- 300 grams plain flour
- 100 grams butter
- 100 ml warm water
- 1 tsp salt
- In a bowl, mix the flour with the salt. Melt the butter and add to the flour and salt mix.
- With your hands rub the butter and flour together until you can feel the mix clumping, by which point add half of the warm water.
- Continue adding until you get a nice elastic dough you can roll out. The dough should be firm and not stick to the bowl. Before you roll it out, work the dough for 5 minutes and wrap in cling film. Leave for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.
- Mince the left-over meat and the chorizo and mix together. Chop the shallots finely.
- In a pan over medium heat, add the chopped shallots. Let them soften for a good 10 minutes so you get all that lovely sweetness out of them. Add the flour and let it cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add the milk and let it cook for another 5 minutes or until you get a creamy bechamel style consistency.
- Add the meats, the tabasco, chervil and the grated nutmeg, and mix well. At this stage, pre-heat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius (350 Fahrenheit, Gas Mark 4).
- Cook for 5 minutes and check the consistency. If you think it's too wet, you can add some more flour to thicken the mixture at this point. Add the egg yolk.
- Let it cook for 5 minutes mixing well. In the end, add the lemon zest, lemon juice and freshly ground black pepper. Adjust your seasoning. The filling is ready, so time to put together some delicious pastries!
- Roll out the pastry as thin as possible, keeping it strong enough to fill.
- Place about half a tbsp in the middle of a 10cm section, ready for folding.
- Fold over the filling, making sure you remove all air pockets and cut it with an appropriately sized pastry cutter (you can also use the edges of a large glass).
- Lay a sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and lay the pastries on top. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and fry on hot oil until golden, turning halfway. Remove from the oil onto kitchen roll to dry the excess fat. Enjoy warm!
Want more Portuguese inspired recipes? Check out my Green Eggs with Ham and Mustard and the easiest but yummiest of meatloafs. Or try a traditional dessert like 'Rabanadas' with honey, figs and walnuts.
These meat pastries look terrific. Nice post.
The Old Fat Guy
Thanks for stopping by and for the comment. They are really delicious, you should try cooking (and of course eating) them!
See you around.
The Copper Kettle