Jamaican Beef Patties
Patties are Jamaican fast food, a golden-yellow crust encasing a spicy beef, shrimp, chicken or vegetable filling. Traditional versions use butter, shortening, lard—or a combination of the three—to make the flaky crust. A blend of butter and canola oil cuts saturated fat with equally delicious results. The patties keep very well, so consider making a double batch to freeze for your own “fast-food” lunches.
Yield: 6 servings
Active Time: 45
Total Time: 150
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (see Note)
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
- 5 tablespoons canola oil
- 1/3 cup ice water
- 1 large egg yolk
- 8 ounces 93%-lean ground beef
- 1 bunch scallions, minced
- 1 teaspoon minced Scotch bonnet chile pepper (see Tip), or to taste
- 1/4 cup fine dry breadcrumbs (see Note)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- To prepare crust: Whisk all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, 1 teaspoon turmeric, 3/4 teaspoon salt and baking powder in a large bowl. Cut butter into small pieces and quickly rub them into the dry ingredients with your fingers until smaller but still visible. Add oil and toss with a fork to combine. Whisk water and egg yolk in a small bowl. Add to the flour mixture and stir until the dough begins to come together. Knead in the bowl a few times until it forms a ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- To prepare filling: Cook ground beef, scallions and chile pepper in a medium skillet over medium heat, breaking up the beef with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in breadcrumbs, water, thyme, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon salt; mix well. Let cool.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- To make patties: Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. On a well-floured surface, roll each piece into a 6-inch circle about 3/8 inch thick. Trim the edges to make an even circle (you might have a bowl the right size to use as a guide). Put about 1/4 cup filling on half of the dough, leaving about a 1/4-inch border. Fold the dough over the filling to make a half-moon shape and crimp the edges with a fork to seal. Place on a large baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling. Bake the patties until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.
Tips & Notes
- Make Ahead Tip: Tightly wrap the dough (Step 1) and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 6 months. Tightly wrap the patties and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Reheat in a 400°F oven.
- Ingredient notes: Whole-wheat pastry flour, lower in protein than regular whole-wheat flour, has less gluten-forming potential, making it a better choice for tender baked goods. You can find it in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets and natural-foods stores. Store in the freezer.
- We like Ian’s brand of coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs, labeled “Panko breadcrumbs.” Find them in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets. To make your own breadcrumbs, trim crusts from firm sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. (To make fine dry breadcrumbs, process until very fine.) Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 250°F until dry, about 10 to15 minutes. One slice of bread makes about 1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs.
- Kitchen tip: One of the hottest chile peppers, Scotch bonnets come in vivid shades of red, orange and green and are used throughout the Caribbean. Though they look similar to habaneros, Scotch bonnets have a citrus note that makes them undeniably different. You can control the heat of a dish a little by discarding the membranes that hold the seeds, which are the spiciest part of chile peppers, along with the seeds themselves. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling hot peppers or wear rubber gloves. If you can’t find Scotch bonnet peppers, habaneros can be substituted.
Nutrition Bonus: Folate (24% daily value), Zinc (17% dv), Iron (16% dv).
2 1/2 Carbohydrate Serving
Exchanges: 2 1/2 starch, 1 1/2 lean meat, 4 fat