Minute Picnic Pasties

Marika Gauci's recipe for miniature picnic pies makes a perfect snack for your next summer picnic lunch. Or why not pack a few in your lunchbox for work?

Introduction

These tiny treats are best eaten outside at a picnic, holding them only between forefinger and thumb, and nibbling like a dainty, delicate, annoying person. You could lightly dip them into creme fraiche or lemon mayonnaise, or you could wolf them down under the picnic blanket because they're so naughtily moreish that you can't bear to share! 

Makes 12-14

Ingredients

You will need:
11.5cm-round pastry or biscuit cutter
For the filling:
olive oil
1 stick of celery
1/2 large carrot
1/2 sweet potato
1/2 yellow or red pepper
8 green beans
1 garlic clove, peeled and sliced
1 tsp hot paprika
1 tsp crushed coriander seeds
1/2 lemon, zest of
salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the pasty pastry:
250g plain or wholemeal flour, plus extra to dust
50g grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp butter, melted
60ml cold water
1 egg, whisked with 1 tsp cold water, for glazing

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 200c/180 fan/gas 6

First prepare the filling. Rinse, peel and finely dice all the vegetables (remember they're going into mini pastry parcels so keep them small). Arrange the diced vegetables and garlic on a roasting tray. Drizzle with a good glug of olive oil, season with salt and pepper, then sprinkle over the paprika and coriander seeds. Roast for 15 minutes. Transfer the veggies to a bowl, add the lemon zest and leave to cool. 

Next make the pasty pastry. Put the flour, Parmesan and salt in a bowl with the oil and melted butter. Rub the fats into the flour, then make a well in the centre and pout in the water, a little at a time, binding the pastry together with your fingers until you have a dough. Wrap in cling film and pop in the fridge for 30 minutes until you are ready to roll. 

When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 200c/180 fan/ gas 6. Dust a baking tray with flour. 

Now assemble your pasties. Roll out the pastry thinly on a floured surface. (The pastry is tough, so use your strength.) Use a pastry cutter to cut out a circle, add a tablespoon of the cool filling just off-centre, then dampen the edges with a little water using a pastry brush. Carefully fold over the pastry to make a half-moon shape. Dab a fork in some flour and press it down along the pastry edge to seal, then pierce the top of the pie with a fork once so that air can escape. Repeat until you've used up all your pastry and filling. Transfer your pasties to the baking tray. 

Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven, brush over the tops with the egg wash and return them to the oven to bake for a further 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. 

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