Lake Superior South Shore, 2016. Part 8, The Great Pastie Bakeoff


One cannot go to the Upper Peninsula (UP) of Michigan without being assailed by Pastie shops.  Some spell it pasty or pastys. Not so Yoopers. Pasties (pass tees) are meat pies with origins back to the Cornish Miners who came to this area in the mid 1800’s.  They were particularly skilled folks with copper mining experience from England.  One branch of Susan’s ancestral tree belongs to this bunch. Pasties were a lunch bucket staple of the hard working miners. 

Pasties typically look like a small (6-8″) calzone.  Some look like a half of a softball with a folded up crust around the bottom. Some are like a rustic tart with the crust folded up around the sides towards the center on top. Real pasties have chunks of beef and pork, rutabagas, potatoes and onion, salt and pepper, suet and butter inside a pie crust made with lard. Store bought pasties have ground beef for meat and carrots. The Cornish miners would be rolling over in their graves at this but then they would eat them anyways.  It is not so much what is in them but the care and love that goes into each one for the well being of those they were made for. 
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From Susan and Roger

Susan  has her mother’s hand written recipe handed down from one lunch pail to the next over generations.  We follow this, the Gospel of Pie, almost exactly.  We leave out the suet (the birds get it) and to make them a bit more heart healthy, we leave out the lard. We added some of our own decorative embellishments and baked up a batch to share in the convection/microwave oven in the coach. It really smelled good.

Real Home Made Pasties

For comparison we bought three beef pasties from Muldoon’s in Munising. They are reportedly the best Yooper Pasties so they were going to be the competition. Amanda and Douglas baked them up in their oven.  The game is afoot!

Douglas Presents the Competition

Half Softball Shaped Pasties from Muldoon’s
The True Pasty with Flakey Crust, Beef and Pork on the Left
Or Muldoon’s With Ground Meat and Carrots
On the Right (no idea what the red thing is) 

There are no eating pictures. Eight Pasties were woofed down in a flash.  Some salad was eaten too.

The results were unanimous!  Mom’s Rule!  Best Pasties Ever.  

And making them always brings fond memories.

More later,

Roger and Susan

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