These Steen’s Syrup Braised Pork Turnovers are hand pies with an all butter crust that open to reveal shredded pork goodness braised in a rich sauce.
This recipe uses Steen’s Cane Syrup, the gold standard of cane syrup, derived juice from the sugarcane plant that’s been cooked in open kettles to concentrate; it’s golden brown, not too thick, sweet, and similar in flavor to molasses without the bitterness. Used in place of molasses or maple syrup, it works great on pancakes, in meat glazes, or in pecan pies. If cane syrup is unavailable sorghum syrup, derived from sorghum grass, is a good substitute; sorghum syrup is another sweet syrup with a bit more earthiness. Also you can blend two parts light corn syrup to one part unsulphured molasses; the corn syrup will combat the bitterness in the molasses.
I make these in large quantities so I tend to braise a large pork shoulder. I can’t help eating some of the shoulder by itself; it’s delicious with rice or mashed potatoes or whatever sauce holding side you like.
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You can call these Root Vegetable Pasties or Root Vegetable Turnovers, depending on what side of the Atlantic you are on. They are a vegetarian take on the Cornish pasty, which are traditionally made with an uncooked filling of meat and vegetables. The earliest references to this style of pie dates to cookbooks of the thirteenth century, but its origins are probably even older than that. The term Cornish pasty has been in use since the 1860s. This popular hand pie has spread throughout the world due to Cornish miners. Although traditionally uncooked filling is used, I like to par cook the vegetables. The pâte brisée butter pastry cooks quickly, and I find the vegetables too raw otherwise. These have carrot for color, rutabaga for flavor, and potatoes because they are delicious. Experiment with your own combinations. The pasties can be made larger than the examples here for a more filling pie, but I like the handiness of these. Plus you can always have two.
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