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Alexanders Pasties

The stems of the Alexanders (Smyrnium olusatrum) goes really well with the cheese and potato filling. You can either make your own flaky pastry, I use 200g strong plain flour to 150g butter; or buy one ready-made, but do try to ensure it is made with butter. Shaping the pasties this way means there is no wastage, rather than cutting out unnecessary circles.

  • 450g flaky pastry
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 250g potatoes, peeled and finely diced
  • 200g grated cheese, this is a good recipe to use up any odd bits lurking in the fridge. Use a cheese with a good flavour.
  • 3 stems Alexanders, washed and finely sliced like a spring onion
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Small handful fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1 small egg, beaten

Suggested Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 7 or 210ºC
  2. Mix all the filling ingredients together, apart from the egg. Do not include any salt as there is plenty in the cheese.
  3. Divide the pastry into 3 or 4 and using a lightly floured board and rolling pin, roll out each into a square approximately 20cms. Moisten two adjoining sides with the beaten egg and divide the filling between the squares. Fold one side of the pastry diagonally over and squeeze together well with floured fingers. You can either use a fork to seal and decorate the edges or pinch along the two sides with your thumb and first finger.
  4. Place on a large baking sheet which has been lined with baking parchment and coat with the egg. Make a hole in the top either by using a skewer or cut with a knife or scissors so the steam can escape.
  5. Place on a medium shelf and bake for 30-35 minutes when the pasties should be golden.

Serves 3-4

About the Author Robin Harford

Robin is a forager and self-taught ethnobotanist. He specialises in wild edible plants and has been running foraging courses throughout the UK since 2008. He travels extensively documenting and recording the traditional and local uses of wild food plants in indigenous cultures.

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