Last week I pulled out some leftover beef stew that I had stuck in the freezer after St. Patrick's Day, and I decided to turn it into little pasties or turnovers. You can call them what you like, but they were essentially handheld meat pies.
Pastry/Pie dough--this can be store bought dough or homemade. See my post from Feb. 28 for a great recipe to work with.
Gravy--you can use homemade or store bought gravy mixes.
To start off, give your stew a quick analysis. Is it thick or thin? If your stew is real juicy you can do a couple of things--
1.You can drain it off and heat up and thicken it to make a gravy to be served with your pasties;
2.You can add a few spoonfuls of flour to your stew to thicken it up so it doesn't run all over your dough;
3. You can work with your stew as is.
I chose to add a bit of flour to my stew to thicken it up a bit.
I rolled out my pastry dough on a floured surface, so it was pretty thin-about 1/8 inch thick, but I could move it around without it breaking or tearing. I used a clean large yogurt container to cut out my circles--anything about 4 or 5 inches in diameter would work as well.
I spooned two tablespoons of stew onto the circle, moistened the edge with water to create a seal, and folded over the dough.
I then used a fork to crimp the edge and complete the seal.
I poked it a couple of times to vent my turnover a little and then put it onto my cookie sheet.
I baked them for about 20-25 minutes or so, at 400 degrees until the edges got nice and golden brown. Instead of making homemade gravy, which I could have done with the gravy from the stew, I opted to use a couple of packets of gravy mix that I had in my pantry. Some of my family members like to dip these in ketchup instead of gravy.
Serve with a green salad and you're set for a delicious meal. Happy baking!