Friday, September 4, 2015


Executive summary by darmansjah

CORNISH PASTY, Cornwall, UK. In 2011 the EU granted the Cornish pasty – beloved by Brits as an edible lunchbox – Protected Geographical Indication status, declaring it a food of regional importance. Only those slow-baked in Cornwall can bear the title ‘Cornish pasty’, and the ingredients must be chunked potato, swede, onion and at least 12.5% beef; the pastry must be crimped to the side.

ORIGIN Pasties have been eaten since medieval times, and by the 1530s Henry VIII’s third wife, Jane Seymour, was reputedly rather partial to them. Yet it was the less wealthy folk of Cornwall who made pasties their own. By the end of the 18th century, few miners or farmers went to work without one. The ingredients were cheap, the product portable and the crimped ridge lifesaving: a disposable grip for miners working amid high levels of arsenic.

TASTING This may not be fancy food, but it’s the most appetizing sort of fuel. The dense filling-lightly seasoned, served hot-is robust and sustaining. Scents of baking waft from many a Cornish shop, and buying a pasty is an unceremonious affair-you’re as likely to find a good one in the village post office as in any artisan deli. Biting into a proper pasty, the pastry tender but firm, with onion slithers jostling tender hunks of beef skirt, is like sinking into a battered old sofa-warm and deliciously comforting. Although pasties never contain fish (it’s thought bad luck), the best place to eat one is by the sea. Stroll along some of Cornwall’s 300 miles of coast-a rollercoaster of cliff tops and coves-and never will a pasty taste better.

Ann’s Famous Pasty Shop, on the Lizard Peninsula in Cornwall, sells pasties in-store and online (US$4.60;

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