A Jamaican beef patty
Also known as hand pie in some parts of the world, especially in the Caribbean, these baked hand pies, which are often refer to as street food, can be found throughout the countries of Haiti and Jamaica from roadside food vendors or restaurants, dinner parties, and local bakery stores.
If you ever get a chance to visit either country, Haiti or Jamaica, you must try each country’s version of beef patties as they are both so satisfying.
Comparison Between The Two Patties
- Jamaican Beef Patties are often more filling with meat with a choice of spicy of mild. On the other hand, Haitian Patties have an extremely soft and flaky dough with several different choices of meats such as fish (smoke herring/cod), beef, or chicken. Haitian Patties are usually mild unless made at home.
- Jamaican patty pastry is flaky but spreads wide when baked. Haitian beef patties rise up with many flaky layers when baked. They are both equally flaky; however, the Haitian beef patties’ pastry is very similar to the puff pastry.
- The Jamaican version, from start to finish seasoned the dough with curry powder, turmeric, salt, sugar, and sometimes baking powder. That way, the first and last taste you get from pasty is the same throughout.
- The seasoning from the Haitian beef patties comes mainly from meat and the epis, green seasoning, that’s used to flavor the meat. Though, the dough still has flavor from the abundance of butter, the emphasis is in the filling.
- The meat in Jamaican patties are often blended whereas the ground meat found in Haitian patties are lumpy.
- Use cold butter and shortening to have a flaky outer crust.
- Store uncooked patties in a freezer safe air-tight container. The patties will last up to 3 months and can be baked cold.
- Work fast when handling the dough as you do not want the butter and or shortening to start to soften or melt.
- Wear gloves and be careful when working with curry powder and turmeric as the color may stain your surface including your hands.
- Use cold water when applying liquid to the dough.
- Be sure to not over work the dough as you do not want it to be mushy.
- Cut the rolled dough in half to better manage it.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
To make them from scratch prepare the homemade dough, season the beef with the seasoning suggestion in the recipe card, and bake.
Bake the patties for 25 minutes on 400 degrees.
JAMAICAN PATTIES / HAITIAN PATTIES VARIATIONS:
Beef is the most commonly used when making these patties from either country. The patties can be made spicy or mild. However, you can definitely use any of the suggestions listed below when making the patties.
The seasoning base is the same for the dough, but you may have to alter the seasoning when using one of the meat suggestions below. By the way, this recipe works well with leftover meat!
- Spicy chicken
- Roasted vegetables or like Jamaican steamed cabbage will work well with these patties.
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Jamaican Meat Pies
For The Dough
- 2 ⅓ Cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 Tsp. Sugar
- 1 Tsp. Baking Powder
- ½ Tsp. Kosher Salt
- 1 ½ Tsp. Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tsp. Curry Powder
- 1 Stick Unsalted Butter Sliced, Very Cold
- 1 Cup Shortening Or Lard Very Cold
- 1 Cup Water Very Cold
For The Meat Filling
- 1 Pound Lean Ground Beef 93% Lean & 7% Fat
- 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
- 1 Cup Haitian Epis
- ½ Tsp. Kosher Salt Or To Taste
For Basting The Dough
- 1 Large Egg Beaten
To Make the Meat
- In a large skillet, add the 1 tbsp. olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the meat. Crumble and cook until light brown. Should take about 5-7 minutes.
- Crumble and cook until light brown. Should take about 5-7 minutes.
- Then add the Haitian Seasoning. Mix well. Cook until the liquid has reduced but not dry. Remove from heat and set aside.
Adding The Filling To The Dough
- Take the dough out of the fridge. Cut the dough in half.
- Wrap half of the dough and place it back in the fridge to continue to chill. Roll the dough with a rolling pin on a floured surface. Fold in thirds. Roll. Fold again and roll. Place the dough back in the fridge and repeat the steps with the other dough. Place the dough back in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Take the dough out of the fridge, roll into a 1/8 inch thick. Cut the dough to desired size. Be sure to work fast as you want the dough to remain cold.
- Take the cut out dough and fold it in half then open the dough again. The crisp in the middle will be your guide as to where the meat should be. Place the meat on one side of the meat, leaving a small amount of space for sealing. Use a fork to seal the dough. Then brush with beaten egg. Repeat the steps with the remaining dough.
- Bake on 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until golden. Serve and Enjoy!