The mention of hand pies jolts me into a happy trip down memory lane. Watching the ticking hands of the classroom wall clock, painstakingly making their way towards the 10:00 clock mark, a shrill sounding bell indicating break-time, a stampede of hungry kids running towards the little window of the tuck shop, all in pursuit of a steamy hot steak hand pie stuffed in a white paper envelope.
I defy you to come up with a treat better than savoury fillings between layers of pastry. Be it the chicken and potato ‘patties’ sold at all Pakistani bakeries, a hearty English cottage pie, Cornish pasties or Mexican empanadas. Meat belongs between layers of flaky pastry.
These Philly Cheesesteak Hand Pies are so easy to make. I always keep frozen pastry sheets in my freezer. Whenever we have unexpected company, I whip up a quick filling (sometimes `pepper steak, spinach feta, chicken and potato) while the pastry sheets thaw, stuff them and after 15-20 minutes of bake time, we have a scrumptious filling homemade snack. They best part about these pies is that they can be assembled beforehand and frozen for later use.
- Frozen Puff Pastry Sheets 6
- Rib-eye Steak 1; cut into strips
- Olive Oil 2 tbsp
- Green Bell Pepper 1; julienned
- Red Onion 1; julienned
- Worcestershire Sauce 1 tbsp
- Salt 1/2 tsp
- Black Pepper 1/2 tsp
- Cream Cheese 2 tbsp
- Gouda or Provolone Cheese Slices 1 per pie
- Grated Mozzarella 1/2 cup
- Egg 1
- Milk 1 tbsp
- Nigella Seeds 1 tsp optional; for garnishing
Heat oil in a pan and stir fry steak strips until they change colour approximately 3-4 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce. Add green peppers and onions and fry for another 2-3 minutes. Stir in cream cheese and switch off flame. Your Philly cheesesteak filling is ready.
To assemble pies cut pastry sheets into small 3″ by 3″ rectangles. You need two rectangles for each pie. Place a slice of cheese at the centre of 1 rectangle shaped pastry sheet, add 1-2 tbsps of steak filling and top with 1 tbsp of grated Mozzarella cheese. Wet the edges of pastry sheet with water, place another rectangle of pastry sheet on top and crimp the edges with a fork to seal. Repeat process for each pie.
Whisk egg and milk together. Using a pastry brush glaze pie tops with egg mixture. Sprinkle with nigella seeds. Transfer pies to a parchment paper lined baking tray.
Preheat oven to 180 ℃. Bake pies for 18-20 minutes or until their tops are a nice golden color.