An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories:

Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

I remember many picnics throughout my life, both as an adult and a child; and, when my parents offered to give me an old Thermos flask recently, for food styling, as soon as I saw which one it was, the memories just came flooding back……I can’t remember exactly how old this old flask is, and my parents are pretty vague about its age too, but, I can remember vividly when and where we used it as a family. My first memory of this flask was when I was very little, pre-school, in Hong Kong; we went out for picnics nearly every week, usually when my dad wasn’t working, and our favourite picnic spot was on Tai Mo Shan mountain, in the New Territories of Hong Kong. Even today, when I close my eyes sometimes, I can still feel the hot breeze on my face and the rustle of dry grass as if I was back there all those years ago……..and then there would be that semi-drowsy moment when mum (or dad) would call me and my sister to eat, and I would get up from my lazy “cloud watching” position and race over to see what lovely home-made treats mum had made and packed.

Hong Kong Karen S Burns

Me, in South Africa on the left, starting school in Hong Kong in the middle and on a picnic in Hong Kong on the right

As soon as the main picnic was over, mum would take out some home-made cake and we would all have a cup of sweet, hot tea from this old flask. All battered and without a proper cup now, this Thermos flask could tell a tale or two, and all of them happy I think. It’s scuffed exterior and dented base are happy family stories and memories…….and, although I don’t take sugar in my tea now, I can still taste the sweet tea that was poured from this flask and can remember how grown up I felt being allowed to drink tea with my parents!  This flask also has a bit of class and history; when I was researching the company “Thermos” recently, for another post, Hot Spanish Soup that’s Chilled! Flamenco “100 Calorie” Gazpacho Soup Recipe, I came across the very same flask as exhibited at the V and A museum in London! It would appear that my parents were at the cutting edge of 1950′s style and had picked a bit of a style icon, in the vacuum flask world!

Old Thermos Flask

Old Thermos Flask: I have this exact flask, but this photo is from the V & A

But, back to my recipe for today, Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties, this is just the sort of recipe that mum would have made for one of our family picnics, and they are my favourite type of pies. These little pasties are my most requested pie recipe, after my Sausage Plait with Sage and Onion and Cornish Pasties recipes. They are made with mashed potatoes, onions, mature Farmhouse Cheddar cheese and a smidgen of English mustard powder as the main seasoning. They are perfect for picnics and lunch boxes, as well as family lunches and suppers.

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

You can freeze these pasties once baked, although I think they are better frozen before they are baked. You can use any cheese of your choice, but for me the best cheese for flavour and punch, is a good mature Farmhouse Cheddar cheese.  I made a batch of these other day and I just had to show off my lovely old Thermos flask, as you can see in the photos……it’s such a shame the cup was lost and the stopper is loose, so there is no vacuum, but, I am keeping it as a tangible reminder of what a happy childhood I had, and its presence reminds me of many family picnics, in England and abroad.

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

I hope you enjoy the recipe if you make it, and do let me know if you make these cheesy little pasties. Is there an item of kitchenalia that brings back memories for you, or maybe a recipe? Do share your memories below, I would love to read them. That’s all for today, have a wonderful Sunday and I will be back soon with a new giveaway and more recipes and tales from my kitchen, Karen 

Tai Mo Shan

Tai Mo Shan

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

 

Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties

Serves 12 Pasties
Prep time 30 minutes
Cook time 25 minutes
Total time 55 minutes
Allergy Egg, Milk, Wheat
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Lunch, Main Dish, Snack, Starter
Misc Child Friendly, Freezable, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue, Birthday Party, Casual Party, Christmas, Easter, Halloween
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
These delicious little pasties are packed with Farmhouse Cheddar cheese, mashed potatoes and onions, and are my MOST requested recipe by all of my family and friends! They make wonderful lunch box snacks as well as being very handy to take on picnics. I also serve these little vegetarian pasties with salad for lunch and supper and they freeze beautifully. Children and adults love them alike, and if you make a full batch of 12, you can freeze half of them for future meals.

Ingredients

  • 450g (1lb) shortcrust or puff pastry (I made my own shortcrust pastry and doubled my usual recipe)
  • 2 large potatoes (peeled and cut into small, even-sized chunks)
  • 2 onions (peeled and cut into wedges)
  • 1 teaspoon English mustard powder
  • 280g (10ozs) Mature Farmhouse Cheddar cheese (grated)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 free-range egg (beaten with a little milk)

Note

These delicious little pasties are packed with Farmhouse Cheddar cheese, mashed potatoes and onions, and are my MOST requested recipe by all of my family and friends! They make wonderful lunch box snacks as well as being very handy to take on picnics. I also serve these little vegetarian pasties with salad for lunch and supper and they freeze beautifully. Children and adults love them alike, and if you make a full batch of 12, you can freeze half of them for future meals.

Directions

Step 1 Pre-heat oven to 200C/400F/Gas mark 6 and grease and/or line two baking trays/sheets.
Step 2 Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and add the potatoes and onions; place a lid on the pan and bring back to the boil before simmering the vegetables until the potatoes are soft. Take off the heat and drain over the sink, or, strain over a colander and keep the water for making soup.
Step 3 Mash the potatoes and onions together with a little milk to loosen the mixture, and then add the mustard powder and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the grated cheese and mix well, allow to cool slightly before making the pasties.
Step 4 When you are ready to make the pasties, roll out the pastry on a floured board and cut out rounds with a saucer or small plate, they need to be about 5" (13cms) in diameter or slightly larger.
Step 5 Spoon some of the cheese and potato mixture on one half, dampen the edges of the pastry and then fold over to make a half moon shape, before sealing and crimping the edges with your fingers or the back of a fork.
Step 6 Place the pasties on the prepared baking trays/sheets and brush the beaten egg over to glaze. Snip or cut the pasty tops to make 2 or 3 slits to allow the steam to escape and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and crispy.
Step 7 Carefully take the pasties off the baking tray and allow to cool on a wire rack. Eat them warm or cold.
Step 8 Can be frozen before baking. Makes about 12 pasties according to the size saucer you use. Any leftover filing can be kept in the fridge for 2 to 3 days and be used again.

 

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

Basic Shortcrust Pastry

Serves 340g (12 ounces)
Prep time 45 minutes
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Appetizer, Lunch, Main Dish, Side Dish, Snack
Misc Freezable, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Region British
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
A basic short crust pastry.

Ingredients

  • 340g plain flour (12 ounces)
  • 80g white vegetable fat (3 ounces)
  • 80g butter or margarine (3 ounces)
  • cold water (to mix, about 30ml)
  • pinch of salt

Directions

Step 1 Mix flour and salt in basin, rub in fats until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Step 2 Using a knife to cut and stir, mix with cold water to form a stiff dough. Do not over mix, light of hand is best. Allow pastry dough to chill and "relax" for 30 minutes, in a fridge or a cool place, cover the bowl or put the pastry in some cling film.

Step 3 Turn dough on to a floured surface and knead lightly. Roll out and use as required.

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

An Old Flask and Childhood Memories: Cheese, Onion and Potato Pasties Recipe

Comments

  1. says

    I’m going to try them soon, they look divine! I’ve made recently something with similar filling, instead a dough I used arabic borek sheets, looks like filo pastry I think.

    • says

      Thanks Sylvia, these are truly delicious and so easy to make; you can freeze them too. I imagine that using Brick, which is another name for borek pastry, the filling would also work well! Karen

  2. says

    Thanks for sharing this recipe and such lovely memories! Our family didn’t do picnics but there are lots of other food-related memories that make me smile. I wish I had those old cooking implements… the corn popper with the wire mesh top, the grilled sandwich maker, the hand-cranked ice cream maker with the wood slat sides… good times, good memories!

    • says

      OH what lovely memories of old (family) kitchen implements…..I would love the corn popper too, and the hand-cranked ice cream maker, what amazing things they must have been. Thanks so much for stopping by to leave a comment too, you have made my day! :-) Karen

  3. says

    The Viking is drooling over my shoulder… this is what he wants for his dinner tonight… thanks a lot Karen!… they do look gorgeous, I want to see inside one! (well I want to bite one in half really…)… love that flask too, really reminds me of childhood too.

    • says

      Thanks Dom darlink and The Viking! I meant to take a photo of the inside, but all of the greedy people that were on this picnic, after I rook the photos, scoffed to lot! I DO have 4 left on the freezer, so will take photos of the inside next time! :-) Karen

  4. says

    Lovely post, what a gorgeous flask! So many kitchen items bring back childhood memories but a strong one has to be my mum’s straight-sided salad bowl. It has a beautiful blue glaze inside and would always be at the centre of the table, brimming with salad, often with chicory leaves poking out of the top. Happy.

    • says

      Thanks Chloe! Another lovely memory shared, I am so pleased to see how many people have left comments about their childhood memories, it’s wonderful for all of us to read and share. I LOVE the idea of your mum’s salad bowl and can imagine it myself on the table with salad and beautiful chicory leaves…..wodnderful! Karen

  5. says

    Lovely childhood memories. It’s funny how something little can really trigger them, isn’t it?
    For me, it is slicing runner beans, which brings back happy memories of my mum slicing pounds of them in front of Sunday night TV. She was preparing them for Green Bean Chutney, which I would then have in my sandwiches every day. All the other kids used to recoil in horror at the thought, but I loved it.
    Now I grow extra runner beans, so I always have a supply of Green Bean Chutney, and slice them in front of the TV to make the next day just like my mum did.
    It must spark something in others too. I blogged about it last year, and now it is my most popular post.

    • says

      Wow, this is just the sort of thing I wanted to see people share, and I will pop over to see your mum’s Green Bean Chutney now, as I don’t have a recipe for that, and would LOVE to make it! I imagine that when added to sandwiches, such as cheese or ham, it was lovely and I bet it’s also great with cheese on toast too. Thanks so much for sharing your memories here Mel! Karen

  6. Liz Thomas says

    Lovely sounding recipe. As soon as I can get a new oven I will try it.

    Tai Mo Shan!!! Yes indeed. Do you remember in the winter that if it was very cold Tai Mo Shan would get frosty and people would rush up to take photos of it!

    And thermos flasks — there used to be a locally made thermos flask called “FreezinHot” I wonder if they still make them. You could buy them in China Prods department stores (they are all upmarket tourist shops now — no kitchenalia any longer!).

    Cheers!
    Liz

    • says

      I hope your new oven arrives soon Liz!

      I DO remember Tai Mo Shan in the winter, as well as the scary journeys over the mountain via Route Twisk! I also remember the monkeys that you used to see on the way up there, and the flooding half way up at the water-splash ford!

      Not sure I remember “FreezinHot” flasks, but mum may remember – she used to haunt all of the China Arts and Crafts Stores and other China Prods stores!

      Karen

  7. says

    I have a real weakness for vintage kitchenalia, and strangely also for maps.
    So all I’m going to say is, don’t let me in the same room as that flask. OK?
    Janie x

  8. says

    These looks superb and quintessentially british – I can see why they are frequently requested. I am bookmarking these and can’t wait to make them. I love your thermos too. My mother still has some bits and pieces in her kitchen that we had when I was young and I love seeing them when I visit – an old plastic lemon juicer is one that always makes me nostalgic because it is so shabby but I am always glad it is still there.

    • says

      Thanks Johanna!

      My mum also has a plastic lemon squeezer, a red one, and although it isn’t “pretty”, like you, it brings back such lovely memories for me! As well as lots of lemon meringue pies and lemon curd etc…..

      I hope that you enjoy these pasties when you make them as much as we do, Karen :-)

  9. says

    Oh I love these Karen, and for some reason I have seen that flask before, I can’t say where but I have. Although me and mum never got on, I always have fond food memories with her, she had this cheese grater that was basically a cylinder with a handle attached, you put the cheese in the top and wound the handle to grate, I found this fascinating as a child. I also remember – and still see my nanny’s plastic beakers and bowls she used for us when we were little, I’m 31 and she still has them in the pantry bless her.

    • says

      Thanks so much Adam! And, I LOVED reading about your food memories too….it seems that there are some items of kitchenalia that just resonate with all of us.I can’t say that I have ever seen a cheese grater like your mum had, but my nanny also had plastic beakers and bowls for us too, and right up until she died, she still had them! Karen :-)

  10. says

    Oh, what lovely memories. I love the flask. I remember my grandma gave me a coffee grinder and I just adore it. It was my toy growing up.
    Love these pockets. A perfect lunch idea for school. The boys would love this.

    • says

      Thanks Ash! I bet that coffee grinder is a much loved part of your toy box! I hope the boys do love these pasties if you make them! Karen

  11. says

    A great story! The pasties look very much like the Russian potato pirozhki (only made without Cheddar). I would have loved to compare them. Any chance of doing the testing in your kitchen? ;)

  12. Tracy Nixon says

    Ahhh I must make some myself!!! You cannot beat homemade pasties and I love cheese or cornish!!! Your pastry recipe looks easy enough to follow. Thank you! Sharing via G+ too!

  13. says

    Fabulous post Karen. That flask is wonderful, what a wonderful family heirloom. Lovely to see your young self too and here a little bit more about your childhood adventures. Those pasties look pretty scrummy too.

  14. Ellie says

    I haven’t had a good pastie in ages……thanks for reminding me what a feast they are. Am feeling all inspired by your recipe and will be having them by the end of the week :)

  15. helen battle says

    These look gorgeous.I am planning to make some at the weekend,i hope mine turn out as scruptious looking as these!!

  16. Irene Wright says

    remembering some of our childhood goodies and passing them onto the present generation is wonderful. I have a few of my own that I have done this with. Now everyone else in my family has enjoyed them too. Thank you for yours

  17. Tracy Nixon says

    Just been to Sainsbury’s and bough all the ingredients to make the pasties tomorrow. Supposed to be a little coolers so pasties will warm and fill mine and the kids bellies after a countryside stroll tomorrow! Thanks Karen! Shared via Facebook!

  18. Helen Aiken says

    Look really good. Going to try out this recipe, though maybe only glaze with milk and not use egg (my daughter has an egg allergy).

  19. June Gaynor says

    I’ve got to try these. My mum used to make a cheese onion and potatoe pie, which I used to love. I’m hoping these taste the same and bring back some lovely memories.

  20. Liz Green says

    There is nothing better than a homemade cheese and onion pasty! and Ill be sure to try your recipe as it looks amazing…I have to follow you, I want to eat everything I have seen so far :D xx

  21. Susie Wilkinson says

    Cheese and Onion pasties have always been a favourite of mine, will definitely give this recipe a go!

  22. ursula hunt says

    I adore cheese and onion pasties, they remind me of lunchtime at school when i used to sneak out to get one from the local bakers

  23. Teresa Sheldon says

    These look and sound delicious, I love all the ingredients and although I like tradional pasties I’d rather have one of these, so here goes going to give them ago and fingers cross there come out like yours I’lllet you know

  24. Helen Humphries says

    These look absolutely divine, I am a long term fan of the humble cheese and onion pasty which home baked like this are elevated to much than a cheap filler!

  25. says

    What a lovely and life saving find you were. I was so pleased that even I was able to cook these (I am a terrible and unwilling cook) but I was more than willing to give these a go, ANYTHING for a pasty! Just finished my third double batch – took your advice for doubling the batch to freeze half. Also tried adding wild parsnip and it adds a really yummy sweet flavor, if you are feeling crazy to try something new, I hope you aren’t offended but I have them growing in the pasture and love the taste, so seemed like a good idea. Thank you so much for this, I feel very Julia Childs. You have fabulous tastes in everything and I thoroughly enjoy your site, many many thanks ~ a grateful ‘full’ family. Custard tarts next?!

    • says

      THANKS so much Catrina! I am delighted that these pasties were a hit and I am always looking for new twists and tweaks on recipes too, so I am all for adding some wild parsnips next time! THANKS so much for your fabulous comments, you have made my day! Karen

  26. Caroline says

    I was looking for a good cheese and onion pasty recipe and I came across yours. What a lovely easy recipe, and they taste delicious. Mine have leaked a bit, but I see some of yours have too. It all adds to the home-made charm.

  27. Gill Webb says

    Loved the pic of you in the white school dress! I was at school in Hong Kong in 1962 and wore similar so it brought back lots of memories!

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