The amazing oggie!

The amazing oggie!

So here it is! The amazing oggie!! This is very much the Welsh version of Cornish pasties but oh, such great flavours and today I’ll be presenting you with a recipe that is to die for (a traditional one I found online but worked perfectly).
Beware though, making the short crust pastry isn’t difficult to make but it does take a full block of butter… Be sure to make others eat this because (ahem) Greg and I ate about 3-4 between each other o.O No joking…

INGREDIENTS FOR PASTRY

– 450g of plain flour
– 1 pinch of salt
– 250g diced chilled butter
– 6 tablespoons of chilled water
– milk or a beaten egg for glazing

INGREDIENTS FOR THE FILLING

– 1 finely chopped onion
– 200g of finely diced leeks
– salt and pepper for seasoning
– 350g of finely diced lean lamb
– 200g of peeled and finely diced potato
– 50ml of vegetable or lamb stock
– 1 tablespoon of mint sauce

PASTRY PREPARATION

Sift the flour and add a pinch of salt into a mixing bowl. Rub in the butter until mixture is dry like breadcrumbs. Sprinkle 6 tablespoons of chilled water evenly over the surface and start to bring the dough together. Add another tablespoon of water if the mixture is too dry. Gather the dough together then lightly kneed on a floured surface for a few seconds until smooth. Wrap with cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes.

FILLING PREPARATION

Put 25g of butter in a small pan and add the onion, leeks, salt and pepper. Fry for about 90 seconds. Add the lamb and fry for another 2 minutes. Add the diced potatoes and stock – simmer for a further 5 minutes. Add the mint sauce and set aside to cool.

ASSEMBLE THE RECIPE

Divide the pastry into 8 pieces then roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to approximately 22cm round. Spoon an equal amount of the filling onto the pastry and spread evenly, leaving at least 2 inches on the sides. Moisten the edges then fold the pastry over, crimping down the edges as you go, to eliminate any leakage. Brush with the beaten egg or milk. Cook in a pre-heated oven at 230c gas mark 7 for 10 minutes. Turn down the heat to gas mark 5 or 150c for a further 20-30 minutes until golden brown.

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My belly’s guide to Wales

Wales is truly a beautiful place which I feel we’re very lucky to have right next door to us in England. Masses of landscape, atmospheric hills (no wonder you see walkers everywhere) and so many cute lambs running around, that I’ll never need to see a lamb again in my life!
We took this trip as a way to spend some time with Greg’s parents, who we probably see on a quarterly basis… Which is why taking this trip as oppose to a quick visit was well worth the effort. Only a 3 ½ hour drive away and a few days of planning through good ol’ trip advisor, was all it took to make this into a memorable one that we’re even planning the next get away!
Clearly, I’ll be sharing my journey of tasting through the areas we visited, which were Llanberis and Conwy. And as exciting as it is to learn about different cuisines, I weren’t awfully adventurous on this one because, really, I didn’t need to be… There’s a simplicity to Welsh food that’s very much similar to the traditional British palette i.e. meats with potatoes and vegetables or gorgeous selections of baking goods; the best being the ‘welsh cake’. However, there was the ultimate ‘Welsh rarebit’ from a tearoom in Conwy; creamy, rich and simply lovely.

So, first I’ll start with Llanberis, a gorgeous little town full of quirky little places near our accommodation (Dol Peris if you wondered and want to stay somewhere comfortable and in a great location). I could’ve stayed there for longer just to take long walks and eat at the different cafes! The first treat we had was along a walk up to some waterfalls with a stop over to “Penceunant Isaf Tea Rooms” – the cutest little place with quite the quirky and interesting host, Stefan. He was witty and a little strange, but gave great service and made you feel at home instantly. Here we tried the welsh cakes and bara brith, a malt loaf for the first time with some hot chocolate; that would be all you need if I’m honest, but they did have some great looking beers for anyone wanting to just relax in the outdoor seating area, overlooking the greenery.

Welsh cake (left) and Bara Brith (right)

Welsh cake (left) and Bara Brith (right)

That evening we went to Peak restaurant, a small and cosy place up the road from our accommodation, and rightly so as we could then have some bubblies too!

Locally Smoked mackerel pate with melba toast

Locally Smoked mackerel pate with melba toast

Welsh rib eye steak with potato and leek gratin and jus

Welsh rib eye steak with potato and leek gratin and jus

Double Baked goat's cheese souffle with red onion relish

Double Baked goat’s cheese souffle with red onion relish

Navarin of Welsh lamb shank with parsnip, turnip, carrot and shallot jus

Navarin of Welsh lamb shank with parsnip, turnip, carrot and shallot jus

Now, let me take you on to some great food we had in Conwy.  When I say we had some great meals, it was a number of fantastic dishes in one place only, that I feel is so worth mentioning and anyone visiting Conwy should dine in, seriously.  Restaurant, Watson’s Bistro, which the food was so fine that Greg’s Dad had to ask if they had a Michelin star to which they replied, “Ah it’s too much a fuss, no need as we love what we do here as it is” – I’m not all that into only attending Michelin star restaurants or anything, but you always assume this is what the restaurants are fighting for so it was refreshing to hear this comment anyway.  It was also a lovely end when the bill didn’t come out to be as much as expected at all.  For this reason, as well as the quality and love put into the food, it’s so worth the visit.

Barbequed pulled shoulder of pork on a warm  ciabatta with goat’s cheese fondant and beetroot glaze and parsnip crisp

Greg’s Dad who had the best starter:  Barbequed pulled shoulder of pork on a warm ciabatta with goat’s cheese fondant and beetroot glaze and parsnip crisp

In between refresher - strawberry sorbet

In between refresher – strawberry sorbet

This was on the specials which I totally forgot to make note of - sea bass with prawns, mash and a roasted veg gratin and some other bits!  Very good though!

This was on the specials which I totally forgot to make note of – sea bass with prawns, mash and a roasted veg gratin and some other bits! Very good though!

Orange and Cointreau crème brûlée with a hot chocolate fondant - gorgeous!

Orange and Cointreau crème brûlée with a hot chocolate fondant – gorgeous!

My belly was extremely pleased with everything that went in to it that weekend!  Finding your way around through eating is one of the best pleasures you can have on any trip, anywhere…!  For my next post, I shall be making something in dedication to my trip to Wales – can’t wait to share it!