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Christmas Dinner Pastie

Introduction & method

For a change from turkey curry, how about making these Christmas dinner pasties - they're a great way to use up some leftover turkey, stuffing, pig-in-blanket and gravy. And even if you don't have any of those left over it's quite easy to make everything from scratch. 

Christmas Dinner Pastie Recipe

Make Hot Water Pastry

Mix the salt with the flour in a large bowl. Cut the fat into small chunks - it will melt more quickly. Put the water and the fat in a small saucepan and heat them until the fat is all melted. Stir half of this mixture into the flour, then add the rest and mix well. Wrap the dough in plastic film and leave it to cool completely.

Make the Leftovers

Skip this if you have leftover turkey, stuffing, pig-in-blanket and gravy. It may seem odd to make leftovers, but if there's any leftover from this you can always make soup. Start with the turkey - I got a turkey leg and used the thigh of it. You need to cook the thigh with some veggies to make a nice stock. You can cook it in a pressure cooker for 30 minutes, or a normal stovetop pan for 3-4 hours, or a slow cooker/crock pot overnight. Add the turkey to the pot along with an onion, halved, a big carrot cut into chunks, 2 sticks of celery in chunks, 2 bay leaves, a teaspoon of dried parsley, some whole black peppercorns, a teaspoon of sea salt. Cover with water, bring to the boil, turn down to a simmer and cook for the specified length of time.

Remove the turkey and set aside. Strain the liquid from the pot and reduce to about half its volume in a saucepan on high heat. To make gravy, melt a knob of butter (about 25 grams/an ounce) on medium heat and sift in the same amount of flour. When you have a smooth paste, add 250ml (a cup) of the stock. Stir well, bring to the boil, then turn down to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Taste it and add salt if required. Set aside.

Make up the stuffing - packet stuffing is fine. I used half a packet (85 grams / 3 ounces) mixed with 200 ml (just over three quarters of a cup) of boiling water. Stir well and set aside. You can add a knob of butter for extra richness if you wish. 

In Britain, pigs in blankets are simply small sausages (chipolatas) wrapped in streaky bacon. You'll need to pre-cook them in the oven for about 10 minutes before you put them into the pasties. If you don't pre-cook them your bacon will likely leach water inside the pasty when it starts to cook.

Prep the Veggies

I don't recommend using leftover veggies - they'll likely end up as mush. Potato, parsnip and carrot make a nice mix - just peel them and cut into 1cm / half an inch dice. In the video I included Brussels sprouts, but on reflection...even my sprout-loving wife didn't like them.

Assemble the Pasties

If you've made your own pastry, divide it into 4 equal balls. Sprinkle flour on your worktop and roll each ball into a large disk. It does need to be perfectly round, so it'll be easier if you use a plate or dish to cut round. I used a soup bowl that was halfway between the size of a dinner plate and a side plate, so that was 23cm / 9 inches. If you've bought ready-rolled pastry, cut the discs out as described. Or, to minimise wastage, make a triangular pasty by folding it across the diagonal. 
Preheat your oven to 160°C (320°F) for a fan/convection oven, 180°C (356°F) conventional, gas 4.
Start by spreading stuffing over the lower half of the pastry. Then you want some turkey and gravy on top of that, and then a pig in a blanket. Spread the veggies out over the meat, leaving a 1cm/half inch border around the curved edge. Moisten the whole rim of the pastry then fold it over and press the curved edge together. Make a fancy crimp - watch the video for how to do this. Make up some eggwash by beating together one egg and a splash of milk. Place the pasties on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper, paint the top and edge with eggwash and bake for 40-5- minutes, turning halfway through.

The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of Christmas Dinner Pastie on YouTube.


Ingredients & Info

 350 grams plain (all-purpose) flour
 125 ml water
 175 grams lard
 1 tsp salt
  leftover turkey, gravy, pigs in blankets, stuffing, or as directed in the recipe
 4 Brussels sprouts
 75 grams potato
 75 grams carrot
 75 grams parsnip


1 egg, a splash of milk for eggwash.

US Customary/Imperial

Makes 4 pasties
Prep time: 20 minutes.
Cooking time: 60 minutes.
Total time: 1 hour 20 minutes.