Irish-Jamaican Patties… because it’s finally summer!
*In regards to my previous post, for those of you who may not be living in Ireland, I just wanted to let you know the Irish population overwhelmingly voted in support of women’s bodily autonomy and I couldn’t be prouder to live here.
I want to thank those who commented on my Repeal Cookies post and especially those who told their own touching stories. I am so glad we repealed this thing! The day the results were out, my friend and I added a simple “ed” to each cookie of the last batch. We won’t have to bake them ever again.*
*This isn’t a sponsored post, but I was gifted some Kilkenny Rosé Veal which I ended up using in this recipe.
Now that the referendum is over, we can finally celebrate the great weather we’ve been having over the past several weeks. I love Ireland all the time, but especially in May and June, when the sun is out, silage is being cut (the entire county smells of freshly cut grass!) and we can enjoy the outdoors with our girls.
As soon as the weather started to turn, we devoted ourselves to tidying up our back yard and garden. My lovely husband made me a new raised bed which we were able to fill with bales of our very own compost! I’m very proud of that small achievement. That said, my greatest gardening achievement this year will be to keep the caterpillars off my cabbage – I have never been able to deter them, or keep on top of picking them off. I’ll let you know how that goes.
As you might know, I put on a (roughly) monthly restaurant pop-up in partnership with The Green Sheep in Thurles and White Gypsy Brewery in Templemore. We usually pick a theme, I create a menu to match and we gather with up to thirty guests for a night of food and frivolity.
This past weekend, with the weather being so delicious, we settled on a Caribbean theme. Curry Goat (made with John Lacey’s beef – not goat – but still very good!), Tres Leches Cake with vanilla-roasted rhubarb (taken from my garden and not exactly Caribbean, but the theme was still in mind!), White Gypsy Belgian Dubbel-brined Jerk Chicken and – for me – the one thing everyone needs at a Caribbean party: Jamaican Patties.
Now before we go any further I need to confess something: I may be from North America, but I’ve never been south of Detroit. I have never been to the Caribbean, in other words. I am hardly a scholar in Caribbean-style food, but I did live in Toronto for years, and there is a lot of Caribbean representation in that city.
Every August there is a massive festival in Toronto called Caribana. It is a celebration of all things Caribbean – the people, the food, the music – and the party completely takes over the city. Actually, it’s the largest street festival in North America. For this pop-up, I took a lot of inspiration from that festival, and from my Caribbean-Torontonian friends who are some of the warmest, loveliest people I have ever known.
Their food is pretty epic, too.
Although I’ve never been to Jamaica, these Irish-Jamaican Patties are very representative of my time in Toronto. At every major subway stop, you’ll find a vendor selling these tasty morsels and – let me tell you – when you’re on the way home from work and absolutely starving, there is no better snack than a Jamaican Patty.
If you’re in Toronto, you must go to my friend Chef Craig Wong’s acclaimed restaurant Patois for his Jamaican Patty Double Downs. It’s basically a sandwich but, instead of bread, well… I’ll let you figure the rest out.
Made with a turmeric-infused pastry and a deeply spiced meat filling, these patties are like Cornish Pasties on flavour steroids. I’ve had them filled with chicken and ground beef, but for the pop-up I made them vegetarian with spicy stewed greens and diced mango. The recipe I’m sharing today is one with veal – and not just any veal – Kilkenny Rosé Veal, which comes from just down the road.
The ground veal retains a lot of moisture but isn’t too greasy, like you’ll often find with ground beef. Because it is a rosé veal, the calves are ethically raised and freely roam the pastures, which imparts a beautiful flavour on the meat. Combined with a bit of Caribbean spice, it makes the perfect filling for an Irish-Jamaican Patty.
You can make the filling and pastry ahead of time and then just throw them in the oven right before you want to serve them. You can also bake them ahead of time and re-heat – because I’m using a high-fat local butter in the pastry, it’s very forgiving and stays flaky and tender for a long time. This pastry – if you’re using a beef or veal filling – would also be *amazing* made with Tipperary Dexter Beef Drippings.
For the Pastry
480-500g/4 cups plain flour
2 tsp salt
1 cup/250g cold Tipperary butter (or beef drippings)
2 tsp ground turmeric
1 cup/250ml ice water
For the filling
2 lbs/900g ground rose veal, or chicken or beef
2 Tbsp coconut oil
2 tsp freshly chopped thyme
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 cup/250g diced onion
1 bunch finely sliced green onion
1 scotch bonnet pepper, or 1 Tbsp Caribbean-style hot sauce if you can find the peppers
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 cup pale beer, like White Gypsy Belgian Dubbel
1 cup beef stock
Salt, to taste
- Make the pastry: in a large bowl, add the turmeric, flour and salt. Rub the butter in with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add the ice-cold water and mix lightly with your fingers until a loose dough forms.
- Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough a few times, just to smooth it out. Do not over-work the dough.
- Divide the dough into two portions, wrap in cling film and let rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Make the filling: in a large frying pan, heat 2 Tbsp of coconut oil over medium-high.
- Add the onions to the pan and gently fry for 3-4 minutes. Then, add the garlic, scotch bonnet and green onion. Fry for another minute.
- Add the ground veal and spices. Brown the veal, then add the tomato paste. Stir to combine.
- Add the beer and gently cook on med-low for 20 minutes. Then, add the beef stock and continue to cook until the liquid has reduced to a sauce (about 30 minutes).
- Season to taste with salt and let cool slightly.
- Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out into a rough rectangle. Using a pastry cutter or pizza cutter, divide each dough half into 6 squares.
- Add 1-2 Tbsp of filling to each square.
- Using egg wash as glue, fold each square over the filling and press the edges with a fork. Place the patties on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Egg wash over the tops of the pastries and bake in a hot oven (about 200º C or 400F) for 15-20 minutes.
- Allow to cool slightly before eating. I like to eat mine with more hot sauce. YUM.
- This recipe makes about 12 patties. They’ll keep in the fridge for about three days.