A Cornish girl's food adventures

Tag: Cornish

Cornish Splits

Cornish Splits

‘What’s a Cornish split?’ I hear you ask. Splits are a wonderfully soft, sweetened roll made from an enriched dough, a little bit like an iced bun. It’s also the most traditional way of serving a Cornish cream tea. Yup, that’s right, splits not scones. […]

SAFFRON BUN BREAD AND BUTTER PUDDING

SAFFRON BUN BREAD AND BUTTER PUDDING

It’s St Piran’s day on Thursday! This means I get to spend the day generally being smug about coming from the best place on the planet (yes, I have checked that.) It also means that I get to have a pasty for my dinner (https://coriandercooks.com/2013/07/08/pasties/) […]

Gool Peran Lowen!

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Happy St Piran’s Day!

St Piran is the patron saint of Cornwall and tin miners and 5th of March is Cornwall’s national day. It’s a day of celebration back home and Cornish people are very (and rightly so) proud of their culture and heritage so it seems appropriate to offer up some traditional Cornish treats…

I think we’ll have pasties for dinner and fairings for ‘afters’ as we say in Cornwall! If I could source a pint of Doom Bar to wash it down with then Mr Colonial Cravings would be a very happy man…

CORNISH SAFFRON BUNS

CORNISH SAFFRON BUNS

I am definitely starting to feel the chill in the weather now, although I have it on good authority that it is not yet as nippy as it is back home, which is of some comfort. Not as much comfort however as curling up on […]

SEASIDE BAG FOR LIFE

SEASIDE BAG FOR LIFE

This is a reusable bag that I made for a friends Birthday. I needed a small gift that I could send home as I am making her wait for her main present until she comes to visit.  She’s a fellow Cornish girl so has an […]

CORNISH FAIRINGS

CORNISH FAIRINGS

It is Mr Colonial Cravings turn to provide his contribution to his offices ‘cookie-club’. Obviously when I say it is his turn I mean that it is my turn, and I don’t mind in the slightest. Any excuse for a big batch of biscuit making.

It appears that come October everything that you consume in the USA, in any form, is obliged to be flavoured with something mysteriously known only as pumpkin spice. Coffee, cakes, biscuits, candles and even lip balm! I’ve decided to buck the trend slightly with my own spicy offerings – Cornish Fairings.

Cornish fairings

Whilst this is a taste of home it’s not actually something that I ever eat when I’m back in Cornwall. This is probably largely due to them generally being mass produced and packed in Emmett-friendly boxes embellished with pictures of St Ives. (Emmett, for the un-initiated amongst you, is the Cornish equivalent of the word Muggle. It means non-Cornish folk.)
The recipe calls for golden syrup, which isn’t impossible to find in the USA but is very expensive compared to the price in the UK. Because I only need a couple of table spoons I made my own, which isn’t hard but is a bit of a faff and takes some of the spontaneity out of biscuit making.
golden syrup Fairings are a lovely thing to make at this time of year, just working with the sweetly spiced soft dough should be enough to lift your spirits on a gloomy day. Soft and chewy whilst warm these become crisp and crunchy once they’ve cooled and will keep pretty well in an airtight container. They would make a nice little gift at Christmas – wrapped in waxed paper and ribbon, without a picture postcard in sight!

Ingredients
Makes 20-30

175g plain flour
50g soft light brown sugar
50g white sugar
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground all spice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
100g butter
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp lemon juice

Cornish fairings

Pre-heat your oven to 180°c.
Sift the flour with the raising agents. Add in the spices and the sugars and use a whisk to mix it all together well.
Using a small pan gently melt together the butter, syrup and lemon juice. Don’t let it get too hot, you don’t want to burn the sugars in the syrup.
Cornish fairings Carefully pour this into the dry ingredients and mix together with a wooden spoon, resulting in a wonderfully soft warm dough.
Pull off small chunks of dough and gently roll them into little nuggets, placing them onto a lined baking sheet. Make sure that they are spaced well apart as they will spread a tad. Squish each one a little with a knife, don’t worry if the edges crack.
Cornish fairings Bake for 10 minutes, by which time they should be golden brown and your kitchen should smell amazing.
Leave to cool on the tray for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely and become crisp.
Now pop the kettle on because these are perfect for dunking….

Cornish fairings

I feel that I should confess to eating at least five of these whilst writing this post, but that’s just between us…

 

SCONES

SCONES

So now I have a fridge full of clotted cream and a larder full of jam all I need is a vehicle to get them to my mouth with. Whilst I’m not above simply using a spoon to do this I thought that. just this […]

CLOTTED CREAM

CLOTTED CREAM

Something else that I simply couldn’t spend the next three years without! A staple in my family, eaten on everything from cornflakes and porridge to Christmas cake. My Dad even claims to have eaten it on a lettuce leaf – allegedly a Cornish delicacy but […]

PASTIES

PASTIES

pasty

Not calzone, not empanadas, good old fashioned Cornish pasties. Common as muck back home but nigh-on impossible to track down in my new neck of the woods. Having grown up In Cornwall this is one of my top comfort foods and so ironically it becomes more necessary the further you get from the source.
I always think that pasty pastry should be a bit more robust and doughy than your standard shortcrust. This may just be my recollections of warming comfort food on dreary Saturday lunchtimes spent in Liskeard waiting for my Dads car to be MOT-ed though. This is why I favour strong flour so if you prefer a more delicate crust by all means substitute plain flour. Equally if you want to use a shop bought puff pastry then it’ll be our secret – I promise not to tell!

pasty

INGREDIENTS (makes about 4)
Pastry:
450g Strong Flour
200g Butter or 100g Butter + 100g Lard
175ml approx. Cold Water
Filling: (approximate quantities)
1 large Onion
600g Potato
200g Swede
400g Beef Skirt (optional)
Seasoning
Egg Wash

To make the pastry sift the flour and gently rub the cold butter/lard into it until you have a breadcrumb-like mixture. Slowly add enough water to bring this all together to form a ball of dough. It’s a good idea at this point to wrap the dough in cling film and let it rest in the fridge whilst you prep the filling.
Preheat the oven now to 200°c.
Peel the spuds and slice them (the best pasty fillings are always sliced – never cubed) then cut these slices into bite-sized pieces. Do the same with the swede and dice the onion. Mix all of the filling vegetables together and season well using plenty of pepper. If you’re using the beef cut it into generous morsels and lightly coat them in flour but don’t add them to the rest of the filling just yet.
Unwrap the dough and gently roll it out to about 4mm. Using a plate as guide cut out circles from the dough, re-rolling as necessary. Place several tablespoons of filling onto half of each circle (about 1 1/2 cm from the edge) Layer the beef on top of this.
Brush the edge of the dough with water, fold the other half over the filling and press down the edges.
Now time to crimp! Not nearly as hard to do as it is to describe I promise. Place your index finger on the edge of the pastry at one end of the pasty. Now take the pastry just in front of it and pull it over your finger. Pull out your finger and repeat the process all around the edge and then simply tuck in the end.
Cut a couple of steam holes in the top of each pasty and brush with egg wash. Arrange on a greased baking tray and bake for 30-40 mins until beautifully golden. Enjoy hot or cold!

pasty