Tasty Tuesday: Honest-to-Goodness Michigan Pasties
This recipe comes to you courtesy of my good friend Sarah, who sometimes comments here. During a chat over lunch, she told me about the classic pasties everybody in Michigan makes. Seattle, I have news for you. That tradition tastes good here, too.
As a general rule, based on childhood experience, I do not eat rutabaga. Not being aware of that fact, Sarah emphasized the importance of the rutabaga to the rest of the recipe, and either she's extraordinarily persuasive or I'm an easy sell or both, because I got myself down to the store and for the first time in my adult life, bought one (once I'd successfully differentiated the rutabagas from the parsnips).
Sarah's right. You'll want to include the rutabaga.
Here's the recipe, as I worked it out from her directions. She and I both tend to be sort of cooks who—well, as she put it: "...just wing it and make note of everything you would do different the next time and then by about the 3rd time you have pure perfection. :)"
Good enough for me. I've tried to make some guess as to measurements for the sake of those of you who are not the type to wing a new recipe. Best of luck. Feel free to ask questions in the comments.
Authentic Michigan Pasties
Pie crust (I'd suggest enough for two double-crust nine-inch pies)
Ground beef or finely chopped flank steak, uncooked
Carrots, potatoes, onions, rutabaga, chopped to about dime size
Salt and pepper to taste
In measurements: I used about 2/3 rutabaga, maybe 1/3 medium onion, a couple of medium-sized baker potatoes and two or three carrots to perhaps a pound and a half of ground beef.
Roll out the pie crust according to how large you want your pasties (I think the general idea is eight- or nine-inch pie crusts)
Mix the beef and vegetables together, all raw, and place in the center of each rolled-out piece of pie crust. Fold the crust over and crimp the edges (this can be done along the top or the side.)
Bake at 375 degrees for... Sarah's original directions said two hours, but I knew that in my enthusiastic little oven they'd be blacker than the leather cover of an old KJV by then. I made them half-size and only baked them 45 minutes. That worked beautifully.