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Gluten Free Cornish Pasty #SundaySupper Gluten Free Cornish Pasty #SundaySupper

The theme for this week’s #SundaySupper is comfort foods.  All of the recipes that first came to mind I have shared previously except for pasties. I grew up in a small mining community in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. There were three major immigrant groups that established the community; English (Cornish), Italian (Sicilian), and Scandinavian. All three of which I claim heritage. Growing up pasties were as common on our table as a hamburger. It wasn’t until I had traveled away that I realized the pasty was a unique meal.

Early mining settlement – Upper Michigan

Mining was a major industry and that’s what lead to the abundance of immigrants who came to the area. They brought with them their cultural and culinary traditions. Pasties were a staple for Cornish miners. The dish is very simple and the story behind its importance in mining is as interesting as the dish itself. Essentially a pasty must have potatoes and onions, other fillings are added based on the person whose eating it and wrapped up in a flaky crust. Cornish wives would make pasties and stamp one end with the initial of the person whose lunch it would be. Entire Cornish families worked in the mines so it was important to know whose was whose.  The pasty itself keeps warm for long periods of time but in case it did cool down miners would toss it on the end of a shovel and heat it up over a head-lamp candle.  A pasty was always eaten upright without a fork.  Superstitious miners claim that the stamped corner of the pasty should be left behind for the “gremlins” in the mine. This is the same end that miners held onto while eating, and as mines often had high levels of arsenic there may be something more to this superstition.

Gluten Free Cornish Pasty

I’ve never had to make pasties because they’ve been readily available.  The recipes are decades old and frankly why mess with something that tried and true? MarocBaba had come to really like pasties before his celiac diagnosis and was really sad that he wouldn’t be able to eat them anymore. So when I had to decide what comfort food I would make I took on a gluten-free pasty. I found my aunt’s recipe but couldn’t use the directions as they were – lots of lard and beef fat. I made a few changes for this dish but keep in mind this is a basic recipe. Flank steak and rutabaga are another variation.

Gluten Free Cornish Pasty


    For The Pastry
  • 2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup quinoa flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp xanthan gum
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 8-10 Tablespoons cold water
  • 1 c water
  • 1 c butter
  • For the Filling
  • 4-5 potatoes in 1/2" cubes
  • 3/4 - 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 onion chopped finely
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1/4 cup beef broth
  • small handful chopped parsley
  • 1/4 stick butter grated
  • 1 egg to brush tops


    Pasty Pastry
  • In a large bowl mix together the brown rice flour, corn starch, quinoa flour, zanthan gum, and salt. Cut the butter into pieces and use your hands to mix the butter into the dough. Continue mixing until the dough looks like small peas or a sand like texture.
  • In another bowl mix the apple cider vinegar, eggs, and cold water.
  • Slowly combine the liquid with the flour, kneading to incorporate all of the water.
  • Once all the liquid has been added knead for 1-2 minutes to ensure everything is combined well. The dough should be slightly sticky but not too wet.
  • Cover the dough and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • To make the filling
  • Cube the potatoes into 1/2" pieces and chop the onion finely. Stir together in a bowl.
  • In a skillet brown the ground turkey. When it is cooked halfway add the beef broth and continue cooking until the broth has been completely absorbed.
  • Mix the meat with the potatoes and onion, seasoning with salt, pepper and parsley.
  • To Assemble
  • Preheat oven to 425F
  • Divide the dough into equal pieces. Using this recipe I made 10 medium sized pasties. Traditionally they are much larger.
  • Grate the 1/4 stick of butter into the bowl with the filling and mix using a spoon.
  • Dust a work surface with brown rice flour and carefully begin rolling out the dough into a circle. You will need to use flour liberally so that it doesn't stick.
  • On one half of the dough add the filling leaving room around the edges to close the dough.
  • Fold over the other half to make a half moon.
  • Crimp the edges of the pasty by rolling over the dough with your hands to create what looks like a braid.
  • Place completed pasties on a baking sheet.
  • Once full slide the baking sheet into a preheated oven.
  • If making medium pasties bake at 425F for 15 minutes then reduce the heat to 350F until the crust is brown (25-35 minutes). If your pasties are larger increase the time to 20 minutes at 425 and 40 minutes at 350F.
  • Note: Pasties often come "pre-baked". To do this bake the pasties at the 425F temperature and remove from the oven. Allow to cool then place into a freezer. Once they have frozen, wrap in plastic wrap and aluminum foil. To reheat place in a 350F oven for 45minutes - 1 hour.

I’m so happy to share this favorite food of mine with you.  I’m even more happy to share the other Sunday Supper’s in this theme.  Be sure to visit the contributors for more great recipes.

#SundaySupper Comfort Food |Soups

#SundaySupper Comfort Food  | Main Dish

#SundaySupper Comfort Food | Desserts

Pairing Wine with Sunday Supper Comfort Food Favorites! by ENOFYLZ Wine Blog 

Join us on Twitter throughout the day during #SundaySupper.  We’ll be meeting up at 7:00 pm(Eastern) for our weekly #SundaySupper  live chat where we’ll talk about our favorite Comfort Food Recipes.

All you have to do is follow the #SundaySupper hashtag or you can follow us through TweetChat.

We’d also love to feature your easy go to recipes on our #SundaySupper Pinterest board and share them with all of our followers, too.

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Amanda Mouttaki

Curious world traveling, mom of two busy boys, foodie at heart, addicted to social media and lover of all things Moroccan.

  • Sarah

    January 3, 2014 #1 Author

    I am from da Bark River area and am missing pasties so much since going gluten free. Thank you doing the work to find a recipe for me! Ii live in Illinois now and it is -10 so I will be making pasties tonight!


    • Amanda Mouttaki

      January 4, 2014 #2 Author

      So glad you found these and I hope you enjoy them as much as we have!!!


  • Alexandra

    January 9, 2013 #9 Author

    My roommate and I will be trying these this evening! What town are you from the UP? We currently go to Michigan Tech!


    • marocmama

      January 9, 2013 #10 Author

      Awesome!! I hope you love them! Make sure to chill the dough – it’s super important. I’m from Iron Mountain 😉


      • Alexandra

        January 9, 2013 #11 Author

        Haha odd, she is from Vulcan, so close to there. Well thank you and I hope you get a chance to visit again!


  • Liz

    October 20, 2012 #15 Author

    How wonderful that you were able to make a gluten free version! Who wouldn’t love pastry filled with delicious meat?


  • sunithi

    October 20, 2012 #16 Author

    Love that you made your own GF flour instead of using RTU GF flour ! Looks and seems yummy !! Would like to link this to my GF page if it’s Ok with you. Just a pic via inlinkz which will connect directly to your blog !


    • marocmama

      October 20, 2012 #17 Author

      sure no problem!! Link away!


  • Sarah

    October 17, 2012 #18 Author

    Thank you for the history lesson! The pasty looks beautiful and delicous.


  • Anne @ Webicurean

    October 17, 2012 #19 Author

    These look delicious! I have a cousin with Celiac disease, and I’m always looking for new recipe sources for her–but I’ll probably try these myself too–because of her, I’ve learned that rice flour is incredibly good!


    • marocmama

      October 20, 2012 #20 Author

      Really my kids couldn’t tell the difference between these and the flour version, and they usually can detect it right away.


  • Amy Kim (@kimchi_mom)

    October 16, 2012 #21 Author

    Thanks for sharing the story behind pasties.

    Love these hand-held meals!


  • Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts

    October 16, 2012 #22 Author

    My dad’s side of the family is from England, so I definitely know that she are classic comfort food. They look amazing!


  • Stephanie Zielinski

    October 15, 2012 #23 Author

    Great recipe to make and keep on hand for busy weeknights! Thanks for sharing!


  • Jennifer B

    October 15, 2012 #24 Author

    I love the story behind the pasty! I’ll have to try this one day too!


  • Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom

    October 15, 2012 #25 Author

    I absolutely love this post! So wonderful hearing about what this dish means to you. . and your family history. . LOVE this! And these look delicious. . I would definitely also eat these without a fork! :)


  • Debbie

    October 15, 2012 #26 Author

    I was raised on pasties but alas am now gluten intolerant and haven’t had much luck with pie crust. Looks like you didn’t include the amount of butter for the crust in your recipe. Could you share how much to use? Thanks for this recipe!


    • marocmama

      October 15, 2012 #27 Author

      Ahh it cut off! I’ll update it but for now I used 1 cup of butter.


  • Sheila

    October 15, 2012 #28 Author

    This looks great! thanks for sharing. I will have to make it soon.


  • Bea

    October 15, 2012 #29 Author

    Pasties are so good! I love anything savory wrapped in dough :) Your recipe looks delicious!


  • Kim Bee

    October 14, 2012 #30 Author

    Cool photo of the mining operation in Michigan. I live about 30 minutes from the border so it caught my eye right away.

    Love this dish. I really love that it’s GF. How cool you can still have such amazing food on a GF diet. This is gorgeous.


  • Jennie @themessybakerblog

    October 14, 2012 #31 Author

    These pastries look amazing, and the filling looks so hearty and delicious.


  • Tara

    October 14, 2012 #32 Author

    I haven’t thought about those for a long time. I love Cornish pasties!!


  • Katie

    October 14, 2012 #33 Author

    I love the story behind the pasty – so glad you shared it! I used to live in Michigan, but I’m not sure that I ever experienced a pasty myself…they sound pretty tasty though! Love that your version is gluten free…


  • Heather @girlichef

    October 14, 2012 #35 Author

    I love Cornish Pasties! Every single time I cross that bridge, I head to the Pasty shop in St. Ignace. Yours sound amazing!


  • Megan

    October 14, 2012 #38 Author

    Wow, this looks so good! Thank you so much for sharing.


  • diabeticFoodie

    October 14, 2012 #39 Author

    I love the bit about stamping initials in the pastry to know whose was whose!


  • veronica gantley

    October 14, 2012 #41 Author

    Yum the hubbie will love this.


  • baker street

    October 14, 2012 #43 Author

    Thanks for sharing a gluten free dough recipe, I like the use of rice flour. The filling sounds incredible too!


  • Paula @ Vintage Kitchen

    October 14, 2012 #59 Author

    I´ve always liked the title Cornish Pasties, they have such a traditional feeling to them! How great to have a gf dough recipe. The potato and turkey filling sounds delicious!


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