Jamaican Patties

Jamaican style patties filled with ground beef and vegetables.

frozen beef patties

remove from plastic packaging
microwave on a plate for 3 minutes

Yeah… where’s the fun in that?

Call me old-fashioned, but I prefer working for my food. Luckily for me though, I don’t consider cooking work. (´・ω・`)

So I used to eat the frozen variant of this Caribbean recipe a lot as a kid, and ever since I hopped on the “whole foods” bandwagon I’ve had them on my list of things I wanted to learn how to make from scratch, and that was quite awhile ago! But I’ve finally gotten around to it, and I am very pleased with the results~!! (◕‿◕✿)

Shout out to PhillyBoyJayCookiNgShow for having the only good video recipe for Jamaican patties on the internet, and possibly the only good recipe on the internet prior to this one. My recipe is based on his, with a few minor modifications. I’m not sure how authentic this recipe is, but I don’t really care because I’m not Jamaican! ♪((└|o^▽^o|┐))

The pastry for this is a variant of the Cornish pasty, except it’s coloured yellow with turmeric or curry powder and usually has more fat. What’s interesting though is that once you crack the pastry, you can fill your patties with whatever you want; chicken, vegetables, rice… The Jamaican patties I ate as a kid were filled with beef, and I was aiming for something as close to my childhood as possible. Ground beef, allspice, and bonnet peppers were thus essential. The other stuff? I honestly don’t know; too lazy to read the ingredients on the frozen crap.

Oh and speaking of frozen crap, you can actually put these in the freezer after baking and just pop them in the microwave for 3 minutes whenever you want to eat them. And it might just be me, but they actually taste better this way. (´・ω・`)

Ingredients (makes 6-10 patties)*

For the pastry:
3 cups flour
3/4 to 1 cup butter (170g-230g)**
4 tbsp turmeric
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 egg
1/4 to 1 cup beef stock or water

For the filling:
450g ground beef
1 brown onion
1 bunch of scallions (5-6 stalks)
2 scotch bonnet peppers***
3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tbsp thyme
1/2 tbsp Jamaican allspice
2 tbsp tomato purée****
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar (or any vinegar)****
1 tsp sugar****
1/4 cup breadcrumbs*****
1 cup beef stock
salt/pepper to taste
2 tbsp peanut oil for cooking

1. Whisk/sift together turmeric, salt, sugar, and flower, then cut in your chilled butter and mix with either your hands or in a food processor until you get coarse crumbs, just like making a shortcrust pastry.
2. Stir in 1 egg with 1/4 cup of beef stock or water, then add that to the mixture. Process or knead with your hands until it starts clumping together, adding more liquid if it’s too dry. You want it to be all even in colour and only slightly sticky, and not what you would call damp. Roll the dough into a ball and cover it with plastic wrap before setting it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
3. Dice onion, chop scallions, and mince garlic. The scotch bonnet peppers you can deseed if you want since that’s where most of the heat is, but they’re very hot so be careful and don’t rub your eyes after handling them (use gloves if you’re a tad clumsy). I don’t deseed mine, so I just mince them and add them with the seeds to my bowl of vegetables.
4. Heat up some oil on a skillet at medium to medium-high, then fry your vegetables with a pinch of salt until the onions are translucent. Then add your ground beef, breaking it into fine chunks with a wooden spoon and cooking it until it browns.
5. Add your seasoning, give it a vigorous stir. Then turn heat to low, add tomato product + vinegar + sugar, breadcrumbs, then add your beef stock (or water with beef bouillion seasoning) and let it simmer on low until the liquid reduces to a gravy-like consistency.****** Taste and adjust seasoning, then remove from the heat.

6. Remove the dough from the fridge and separate into 5-6 even pieces, to start. On a well-floured surface, roll each piece as flat as you can make them, then take a large circular bowl or pastry cutter and cut out a circular shape, putting the portion of dough that you cut off aside. Here’s a visual. If your bowl is a little too small like mine was, feel free to roll the circles out a little more afterwards.
7. When your 5-6 initial pieces are rolled out, take the remainder of the dough, mold it back into a ball and repeat the same process until all your dough has been flattened into even circular shapes.

My Jamaican pastry making station. I used the bowl above to serve as a guide to cut the pastry into circles.

My Jamaican pastry making station. I used the bowl above to serve as a guide to cut the pastry into circles. Since this was a little too small, I rolled them out a little bit more afterwards.

8. Depending on how big you made your circles, add 1-3 tbsp of your ground meat filling to the center of your patties, taking care not to overstuff them. Fold the pastry over the filling, then press the ends very hard with your fingers so the two sides are pretty much fused together, then crimp those edges with a fork. Repeat for every patty.
9. Place patties onto a baking tray with parchment paper and place into an oven preheated to 400F. Bake for 18-25 minutes, or until crust hardens. Check occasionally.
10. Remove from heat, and let it cool before serving. Store in the fridge for a few days, or keep them in the freezer for months and just place in the microwave for 3 minutes whenever you want to eat them! (´・ω・`)

*I was able to make 9 fairly small patties, and I used up all my beef and dough. So I’m going to say 6-10 depending on how big you make them, or rather, how big the bowls you use as a guide for cutting your dough are.
**This is personal preference. Basically, do you want your pastry hard and crusty, or soft and tender? I actually did these using only 3/4 cups of butter, and I honestly found them a little too dry, so next time I’m gonna use 1 cup of butter instead. Thing is, most recipes call for a flour to butter ratio of 3:1 anyway, but I did mine 3:3/4 “just to see if it’ll work”. It did, but it wasn’t as good! (*ノ・ω・)
***Use 1 if you’re a pansy who can’t take the heat, although I’d recommend getting out of the kitchen if that’s the case… Jokes aside, it’s another thing that comes down to personal preference. 2 bonnet peppers wasn’t hot enough for me, but it was way too hot for my mother. So I’d say 1 is mild, 2 is hot, and 3 would be… well, the way I like it. (¬‿¬)
****Most people put ketchup in their filling, but I don’t like it very much so I use a combination of tomato product, vinegar, and sugar. You could alternatively use a whole tomato and feel free to leave out the sugar, since whole tomatoes are naturally sweet. Why are we adding sugar to a savoury dish though? Not to sweeten it, but rather because I’ve gotten into the habit of adding a pitch or two of sugar whenever tomato product is involved. Apparently it “balances out” the acidity from the tomato product. Also, tomato product = tomato paste, tomato purée, or tomato sauce… in my dictionary.
*****You could leave this out, but I wouldn’t; they seem to provide a little more to chew on… I have tried without them, and the meat filling felt a bit… empty.
******Don’t reduce it too much though. You don’t want a dry filling! Remember, you’ll be cooking them again when you put them in the oven, so don’t reduce it all the way to your desired thickness, perhaps just about 80% of the way there. You only want it dry enough so that it doesn’t make your pastry all soggy, which shouldn’t happen unless you roll it out too thinly.

Also, wash your rolling pin IMMEDIATELY after you’re done rolling the pastry, or else the turmeric will permanently stain it and your mother will yell at you!!! ;-;

Also, do not brush your teeth right after eating one of these… Fucking turmeric… That was my favourite toothbrush…



About Crisis

Ha nem mind lehet enyém, akkor nem kérek semmit.

Posted on November 10, 2015, in Beef & Lamb, Lunch and Dinner, Western and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. These look delicious! I just pinned them to try.


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