Suet Pastry


seal the edges

Suet pastry brings back memories of school dinners and is a classic pastry for traditional British pies and puddings, both sweet and savoury.  I just love Jam Roly Poly with fresh custard…

Using similar proportions to shortcrust, suet pastry is softer and more absorbent, with a tendency to rise in a pseudo-sponge type fashion.  This makes it great for pies with full flavoured, sticky juices which just soak into the crust.  It’s also less fickle and open to a little more abuse than shortcrust.

Traditionally made with beef suet extracted from around the kidneys, these days clarified shredded suet makes for a quick and easy preparation.  Vegetable suet is just as good and is used in the same proportions.  One benefit of suet is it’s ability to keep, having a long shelf life without the need for refrigeration so there’s no excuse not to keep a box in the cupboard

Enough for 1 pudding

Ingredients

  • 100g Vegetable or Beef Suet
  • 200g Plain Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Sugar (for sweet pastry only)
  • Other flavour additions of your choice (herbs, lemon zest, etc) – optional
  • Approx 150ml Water

Method

  • Put all of the dry ingredients in a bowl and rub together until smooth, breaking up the suet shreds.  Alternatively blitz in a food processor for a few seconds
  • Add the water a little at a time, stirring in with a knife until the dough starts to come together
  • Get in with your hands and gently work the dough, taking up all of the loose flour – it should be soft and smooth but not sticky
  • Your suet pastry is ready to use.  Turn out onto a floured surface and roll out – the dough should be quite thick
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