Beef turnovers (buljona pīrādziņi, literally “broth pies”) are distant cousins of popular bacon pies (pīrāgi); they are more delicate and slightly more time consuming. Nevertheless, they are worth the effort and can be enjoyed hot (with a cup of broth) or cold (as a snack). Back in Latvia they would be available in any bakery and street-side shop.
The recipe can be simplified by replacing steak with mince (just skip Step 1 and 3).
- 6 sheets puff pastry (roughly 22 x 22 cm)
- 400g chuck steak or gravy beef
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 onion
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 egg
- salt and pepper
- Place the beef in a medium saucepan, add the bay leaf, garlic, one half of the onion and pepper, cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until beef is cooked through. Skim impurities that may surface.
- Meanwhile finely chop the other half of the onion.
- Strain the beef over a bowl and preserve the liquid.
- Remove the beef, cut in chunks and process in a food processor until finely chopped.
- Heat oil in a frying pan, add chopped onion and fry until translucent. Add the beef and fry for 2 minutes. Add a cup of preserved stock and simmer for couple minutes until most of the liquid gets absorbed/evaporates. Remove from the heat and season well.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
- Cut each puff pastry square in 4 smaller squares (11 x 11 cm each). Place a heaped tablespoon of beef mixture in the middle of the square, fold over to create a triangle and push the edges closed with a fork. Repeat for the rest of the pastry.
- Transfer turnovers on to the baking tray. Lightly brush each pastry with a whisked egg. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown.
Beef turnovers can be served hot or cold.