“If hearts are gardens, plant those flowers in the chest of the ones who exist around you. “
How is your Spring going? it’s still quite chilly here on the coast. The wind blows cold even on sunny days and I remember last year I didn’t do my yearly wardrobe swap to Spring/Summer wardrobe – until the end of June last year. The cold season seems to drag on here and although I’m still craving comfort food, I have been adding Springtime veggie and fruit salads to brighten our meals. Do you notice what your body needs throughout the seasons? I know that once the sun starts to stick around, I start to crave the detoxifying foods Mother Nature provides us.
I keep puff pastry in the freezer. They’re great for a quick Chicken Pot Pie (my recipe HERE), Ham and Cheese Pastries (my recipe HERE) and for these Hand Pies, filled with savoury ground beef. These are a favourite at home; I make the amount in the recipe below and freeze 1/2 for another time as there are only 2 of us at home but you’ll be able to make about 8 pastries (depending on how big you make them).
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
- 1 rib celery, finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 ½ teaspoons Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3 level tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ cups beef stock or broth
- 1 medium russet potato, peeled and diced into ¼ -½ inch cubes
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, plus extra for garnish
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
- ¼ cup frozen green peas
- 2 sheets of puff pastry sheets, frozen (I buy Presidents Choice)
- 1 egg, whisked for egg wash
You will also need a baking sheet and parchment or wax paper.
My Hand Pies Instagram Reel
Preheat your oven to 400° and line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
- Begin by gathering and prepping all of your ingredients (Place the puff pastry into the fridge to begin to thaw about 40 minutes before you start – then put in on the counter about 10 minutes before assembling) according to the ingredients list above.
- Place a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven oven medium-high heat, and add the butter and the olive oil. Once the butter is melted, add in the onion, carrot, celery, plus a couple of good pinches of salt and pepper, and saute the veggies for a few minutes until just softened.
- Add in the garlic, and once aromatic, add in the ground beef along with the Italian seasoning, the white pepper plus a couple more pinches of salt and pepper, and use your spoon or spatula to crumble the beef into a fine consistency, cooking it for a few minutes until no longer pink.
- Next, add in the tomato paste along with the Worcestershire sauce and stir that into the beef mixture, then sprinkle in the flour and stir that in to blend well.
- Add in the beef stock or broth, followed by the diced potato, and stir to combine. Cover the pan and allow the filling to gently simmer just until the potatoes are tender and the sauce thickened, roughly 25-35 minutes. You may want to lower the heat.
- To finish the filling, add the thyme leaves, the chopped parsley and the peas, and stir to combine. Check to see if any additional salt or pepper is needed, and allow the beef filling to completely cool.
- Once your filling is nearly cooled, take your puff pastry sheets out of their wrapper and spread onto a floured counter or cutting board. I roll them out a little to make them bigger. using a knife or pizza cutter, cut 1 pastry into 4 squares.
- Place the squares onto a wax or parchment paper-lined sheet tray.
- Once all of your puff pastry sheets are cut and ready, add some of the beef filling to the centre or closer to one side of each square. You can now either fold the pastry over and wet the edges to seal and create a pocket (like my IG reel) OR if you place the filling in the centre of the square, you can fold each corner of the pastry into the centre and create an envelope (like the photos). I find this way allows me to stuff the pastries with more filling.
- Once assembled, cut 2 to 3 small slits or “vents” into the top of each hand pie, to allow steam to escape while they bake. Then if you’re ready to bake them, pop them in the oven. You can also place them in the freezer for up to 20 minutes if you want them to firm up a bit.
- Brush some egg wash over each savoury hand pie and bake them for 25 minutes, or until a deep, golden brown.
- Allow the hand pies to cool for 10 minutes before eating, as the filling will be very hot.
I’m looking forward to warmer days shopping at the Farmers Market for fresh produce and the freedom of wearing a flowy dress. Such things make me happy. For my Springtime To-Do list HERE
Thank you for joining me today. There’s always something cooking in the kitchen at The Bell Witch Manor.
Until next time and if you’d like to join me on Instagram you can find me @BellWitchManor