Meat and Poultry

Jamaican Beef Patties

Loreto November 10, 2020

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Jamaican Beef Patties. This month’s featured Country for the ‘Eat the World’ challenge is Jamaica! We are so excited to share with you these beautiful beef patties that Nicoletta and I made together. These are not only a delight to eat given they are a  handheld food, more so, they host a tender flaky crust housing the most aromatic, spiced, moist meat filling one could only imagine. Together,  as a result, simply and utterly scrumptious!

Song of the day: “Jamming” by Bob Marley.

Jamaican Beef Patties-patties in pan

Obviously, I could not have been happier to hear we were stopping in Jamaica with our food group Eat the World. There are many recipes that I wanted to do, however, the one that really stuck and much to the suggestion of Nicoletta who was eager to make the dough, was these patties! In my mind, the thought that together we could pull this off in a most delicious and beautiful way prevailed! 

Come with us and let’s bring a bit of Jamaica into our lives!

 

No Stranger to Jamaican food!

In fact, I have had a few friends from Jamaica and I still remember the various food that I so graciously tried plus enjoyed totally. Rice and peas, bun and cheese, jerk chicken, and these wonderful Jamaican patties. Who isn’t a huge fan of any street food, likewise, I have to tell you this particular hand patty comes high on my list. Given the flaky pastry and that spiced beef, it is just pure heaven!

Nicoletta and I also had the chance to visit Jamaica for my daughter Alexa’s and Rod’s wedding. We were in Montego Bay and we just loved it, from the beaches to the people, the music, and most of all, the food and drink. It was Nicoletta’s first time tasting rum and boy did she like it! Needless to say Nicoletta and I channeled all our Jamaican memories and happy thoughts into these Jamaican Beef Patties.   

Montego Bay, the beach

The beach at Montego Bay

Welcome to Eat the World, and let’s have some fun in the kitchen!

Jamaican Street Food

From what I learned, the street is where you really get to taste the real deal in Jamaican cuisine. Jerk chicken/pork grilling on hot coals, roast breadfruit, roast yam, boiled corn, curry goat, to these wonderful spicy and incredible patties. These hand pies are also the Jamaican answer to fast food. They can be made with chicken, shrimp, cheese, or vegetable filling, or more so with beef like we have done today.

Jamaican Beef Patties-ingredients and dough on board

Sunshine Patties 

To explain, meat patties are also called Sunshine Patties in Jamaica. That is because there is quite a high amount of turmeric in the pastry that is responsible for the beautiful yellow color. We wanted to follow a traditional Jamaican recipe and found a great one on a Jamaican website, which we adapted slightly to our taste and need. Nicoletta added 1 tablespoon of turmeric but for a less prominent taste and color, you could reduce it to 1/2 Tbsp. TIP: You could substitute turmeric with yellow curry, however, the flavor will change. Likewise, you can adjust the spice. It called for scotch bonnet peppers, however, those are super hot, so I used some grilled green chilis that I had jarred in olive oil.

All-butter pastry dough

Although the pastry dough for traditional Jamaican patties is normally made with beef suet to ensure a flaky pastry, nonetheless, Nicoletta substituted it with butter and the pastry was perfectly light and flaky. You could also use lard or a mix of butter and vegetable shortening. Either way and as a result of loving what you are doing, you are going to get a lovely pastry! 

The beef filling

For the beef filling, I used an organic butchers’ blend ground beef we purchased from an up and coming butcher shop called ‘The Butchery’. Just the look of this coarsely ground beef said tender and juicy. Just what I need for the filling of these Jamaican Beef Patties!

Furthermore, I used:

  • beef stock
  • minced onion and garlic
  • charred green chilis
  • yellow curry
  • coriander
  • dried thyme
  • allspice
  • onion and garlic powder
  • paprika
  • butter
  • fresh chopped parsley
  • salt and white pepper

This is how we do it

Truly, we want that meat to stay juicy and tender, so this is how you do it:

  • Firstly, break up the ground beef in a deep pan, add in beef stock and olive oil until it covers the meat. Cook until the moisture is almost all gone.
  • Secondly, add in the onions, garlic, green chilis, all the spices, and mix until well incorporated. You may need to add a bit of broth to moisten it at this point. Keeping it juicy is key. A little sauté time and then, to richen it up a pat of butter, along with fresh chopped parsley and bread crumbs. 
  • Then, a very good stir to get it all nice and balanced.
  • Lastly set aside until time to fill the patties.

Incredible Aroma 

Surely, I have to say that the aroma of this beef simmering on the stove with all those spices and everything was absolutely incredible. It was calling me and I  kept going in for some spoonful’s! Then a voice said stop! As a result, I put the brakes on, or we would not have any filling left for the patties. Lol!

Teamwork

One thing about Nicoletta and I, we love cooking together. This next stage of getting these Jamaican Beef Patties ready  likewise , involved some wonderful teamwork on our part. Furthermore, Nicoletta is the dough whisperer, and I am the spice king so having her roll out the dough was only natural, while I manned the filling. Truly a very beautiful job she did, right? She divided the dough into six pieces and rolled them out to a somewhat round circle.

Time to fill

This is where I come in. With a spoon in hand and my filling next to me, I proceed to fill each rolled dough with a few tablespoons of the meat mixture. Furthermore, not too much, and not too little is the song and dance, as Jamaican patties are neither too fat nor skinny minnie by no means! It has to be jussssst righhhhht! Somewhat flat but not no existent!

Jamaican Beef Patties-patties in pan unbaked

Folding and sealing!

Here’s the fun part. Time to close these babies up and get that oh so familiar edging that we all know these patties to have. We used a fork and pressed firmly but not too hard to cut through both layers of dough. It just needs to seal the deal not take it out! Lol! Now you have to admit, these look really cute and so so colorful. It brings nothing but sunshine to our kitchen!

A high five 

A quick high five with my beautiful wife, and time to get these Jamaican Beef Patties in our already preheated oven.

   Jamaican Beef Patties-patties baked in pan 

So Beautiful!

In a word, look at these patties, beautiful! Not only the color but also the aroma of all those spices and that pastry. Wish you could smell our kitchen. It is amazing. I can’t wait to bite in!

No need for utensils

For one thing, there is no need for utensils to eat these. Consequently, it is totally a hand affair! They are still warm and I slowly break one open. Ooooooh, look at that! The filling is perfect, so moist, so tender, and okay I can’t wait, I have to take a bite. Mmmmmmmmmmmmm the crust is flaky, subtly crisp, and oh buttery with that hint of turmeric coming through. More so, the filling comes in like a silk blanket and the ground beef just melts at your tongue releasing the curry, thyme, pepper, allspice, paprika, and so much more. The sweet onion soothes the heat and spices nicely adding a roundedness to the flavors.

Final thoughts

All in all, I have to say these “Sunshine patties”, are really delicious, lol. Now I know why they stress saying to keep that moisture in the filling: it is moist, tender, and scrumptious, and so balanced by the pastry that holds it together beautifully! Ultimately, it was so much fun, furthermore,  making them with Nicoletta was truly wonderful. Hope you had fun too making these with us. As a result bringing some of that Jamaican sunshine to your kitchen! We would love to hear from you and see pictures of your Jamaican Beef Patties!

Enjoy!

Check out all the other wonderful Jamaican dishes prepared by fellow Eat the World members and share with #eattheworld. Click here to find out how to join and have fun exploring a country a month in the kitchen with us!
Pandemonium Noshery: Pumpkin Rice
Culinary Adventures with Camilla: Jamaican Stew Peas
Amy’s Cooking Adventures: Jamaican Chicken & Pumpkin Soup
Palatable Pastime: Jamaican Jerk Chicken Burger
Sneha’s Recipe: Jamaican Saucy Jerk Chicken Wings With Homemade Jerk Seasonings
CulturEatz: Jamaican Ginger Beer Recipe
A Day in the Life on the Farm: Banana Fritters
Sugarlovespices (us!): Jamaican Beef Patties 
Making Miracles: Jamaican Chicken Stew
Kitchen Frau: Rice and Peas (Coconut Rice and Red Beans)

Jamaican Beef Patties

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Jamaican Beef Patties-feature-patties in basket

Jamaican Beef Patties

  • Author: Loreto and Nicoletta
  • Prep Time: 1 hours 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 patties 1x
  • Category: Meat, Snacks
  • Method: Cooking/Baking
  • Cuisine: Jamaican

Description

I am so excited to share with you these beautiful beef patties that Nicoletta and I made together. These are not only a delight to eat given they are a  handheld food, more so they host a tender flaky crust housing the most aromatic, spiced, moist meat filling one could imagine.


Ingredients

For the butter pastry dough:

  • 225 g all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (110 g) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 tsp (2 g) salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp (7 g) sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp (7 g) turmeric powder (I used 1 tablespoon)
  • 115 g ice-cold water

For the beef patties:

  • 500 g ground beef
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1 tsp yellow curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 green chili peppers, finely chopped
  • a pinch of dried red chili flakes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 yellow onion, minced
  • 1/3 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp chives
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsley

Instructions

For the pastry dough:

  1. In the bowl of a food processor add the flour, salt, turmeric powder, and butter. Pulse 6-8 times or until you get a crumbly texture.
  2. Add in the ice-cold water and pulse until ingredients are starting to come together and a shaggy dough forms.
  3. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and quickly knead it together. Form a ball, flatten it, then wrap it in plastic and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or overnight.

For the beef filling:

  1. Add the ground beef into a saucepan over medium-low heat. Pour in 11/2 cups of beef stock and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. The meat should be submerged in liquid. Break up the meat with a spoon or fork, and simmer for approximately 20 minutes, or as the meat has absorbed most of the broth.
  2. At this point, toss in the chopped onions, minced garlic, grilled green peppers, red chili flakes, paprika, thyme, coriander, yellow curry, onion powder, garlic powder, white pepper, and allspice and stir till well combined. If you need to add some stock to the ground meat do so, the meat should be juicy.
  3. Next, add in the butter and chopped parsley. Stir to combine.
  4. Lastly, sprinkle in the breadcrumbs a little at a time and mix. Time to taste for seasoning and add if needed. Again, just make sure there is enough liquid to absorb the breadcrumbs. Then, remove the beef from heat and set aside.

Assembling the patties:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  2. Remove chilled dough from the refrigerator, place it onto a floured surface, and divide it into 6 equal parts.
  3. Roll each piece into a ball and flatten it with a rolling pin to a round disc, roughly about 15 cm or 6 inches round.
  4. Fill each pastry disc with 2-3 tablespoons of filling on the lower part of the disc.
  5. Overlap the pastry dough to close the patty to resemble a half-moon crescent, press the edges, then seal with a fork.
  6. Place the 6 patties onto the lined baking tray and bake in the middle rack for 20-25  minutes or until golden brown. Depends on your oven. Just an eye on them.
  7. Take out of oven, place patties on a cooling rack.

Notes

Since there are a few steps involved: making the pastry, making the filling, assembling, and baking, you can make the pastry dough the day before and let it rest in the fridge overnight.

We also had some filling left and I made meatballs and coated them in panko and breadcrumbs and baked them in the oven on a baking pan at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes!

The patties freeze well, wrapped individually in plastic wrap, and then placed in a Ziploc bag.

The amount of turmeric in the dough makes them yellow and can stain your hands/napkins but it’s well worth it 😉 . You could replace turmeric with yellow curry.

The cook time reflects both the simmering of the filling and the baking of the patties.

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Jamaican Beef Patties-Loreto bites in

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36 Comments

  • Avatar
    Reply Wendy Klik November 10, 2020 at 8:49 am

    I love these little hand pies. They sound so amazing and flavorful. Thanks for a very informative post.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:20 am

      Thank you! We had so much fun making them and truly enjoyed them. So so flavorful with a lovely texture!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Amy's Cooking Adventures November 10, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    Don’t these look tasty? That pastry dough look just amazing!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:16 am

      Thank you! Nicoletta did an amazing job on the dough as usual. I loved the turmeric, it adds so much flavor to the pastries!
      Happy cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Bernice Hill November 10, 2020 at 1:18 pm

    Darn it anyway! I had a recipe 3/4 way ready for this month but I’ve run into some health issues and didn’t get it quite finished.
    I’ve ALWAYS wanted to make Jamaican patties. They are so tasty and I love working with pastry. I would love to try the shrimp ones for sure and when I do, I’ll use your pastry. It’s really difficult to find Scotch Bonnet peppers but worth seeking them out…heat be damned! lol

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:08 am

      Hi Bernice, hope you are feeling better. Seems to be something happening to many this year, health issues. Well on the flip side these Jamaican patties were just what the doctor ordered and it did bring lots of sunshine for my taste buds! As for the scotch bonnets I do see them here sometimes. I used the green chilis that I roasted on the BBQ and preserved in olive oil. It provided a subtle heat which was just perfect. I am sure the scotch bonnet would put a fire in our bellies. I love your ides of making the shrimp ones. They would be so tasty!
      Wishing you good health and peace!
      Loreto out!

  • Avatar
    Reply Juli M November 10, 2020 at 4:09 pm

    Jamaican beef patties are one of my favorite foods, ever! Such a treat!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:04 am

      I agree Juli, easy to eat, very delicious and so much fun to make. Truly a win win in my eyes!
      Have a great day!

  • Avatar
    Reply FOODHEAL November 10, 2020 at 11:19 pm

    I love that you added turmeric to the dough, it makes the whole recipe awesome. I’ve never eaten Jamaican food, but from this recipe, it sounds spicy, I’d love these patties

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:03 am

      So glad you liked these. We toned down the spiciness a fair bit. I used some green chilis I grilled and preserved in olive oil. Usually they use scotch bonnet peppers which have a fair bit of heat. All in all your right about the turmeric it made the sunshine in the dough! Always a first time to try Jamaican food! Thank you for checking these out!
      Happy cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Margaret @ Kitchen Frau November 11, 2020 at 6:38 am

    Those look so appealing! I want to bite into one right now. That combination of spices in your filling looks amazing – so rich and nuanced. They’d be the perfect snack anytime, or just a meal by themselves.
    Great recipe.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 11, 2020 at 10:01 am

      Thank you Margaret! These were so so good. Nicoletta and I had so much fun making them. It is wonderful to work as a team. The pastry was so tender and flaky and that filling luscious! I sure do hope you get to try these or maybe we will make some and delivery!
      Have a wonderful week!
      Cheer!

  • Avatar
    Reply veenaazmanov November 11, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    Buttery crust and flavorful filling. I just want to grab a bite of it. Looks perfect for a party snack too.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:14 pm

      Most definitely Veena. The crust and filling are a perfect dichotomy of texture and flavor! Wish we could hand one to you through the screen, would that not been super excellent!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Ashley November 11, 2020 at 9:34 pm

    Those turned out beautiful! I need to try this recipe!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:15 pm

      Please do Ashley, we would love to hear your thoughts on how you made out. I am sure you will do an excellent job and will enjoy them tremendously!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Rebekah Hills November 12, 2020 at 11:27 am

    I am going to have to save these to try soon – they sound wonderful!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:16 pm

      Thank you Rebekah, Such a wonderful hand patty and so so delicious! Super excited for you to try them.
      Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Reply Paula Montenegro November 13, 2020 at 7:04 am

    I’m not familiar with Jamaican food but very used to eating empanadas. I LOVE the combination of spices in this recipe! I’m thinking of making a large batch and freezing them. Thanks for sharing.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:17 pm

      Thant is a great idea. Just don’t keep them over a few months in the freezer, however they warm up nicely and so nice to have on hand when needed. Thank you so much for checking these out!
      Happy cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Ramona November 15, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    Yummm, my husband makes something similar for us and they are delicious! I will definitely try to make these myself as they look amazing and the colour fo the look perfectly golden brown! thank you for sharing this recipe.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:12 pm

      You are so welcome Ramona, so glad you liked them! Can’t wait for you to try them, and would absolutely love to hear how you made out. Happy Jamaican patty making!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Marisa F. Stewart November 15, 2020 at 1:56 pm

    The meat pies look so good and are perfect for the lunch I’m planning for the grandsons. They love finger food and I can prepare the patties ahead of time. I’m so glad to find another use for turmeric – that is such a great spice. And your crust looks melt in your mouth good. I’ll have to make sure to set some aside for Hubby and I because I know those boys will go right through them.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:10 pm

      Hi Marisa, yes those young boys have such an appetite don’t they. Especially if they smell these baking in the kitchen. I would definitely hoard some for yourselves. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Avatar
    Reply Gunjan November 15, 2020 at 5:43 pm

    This is such a delicious recipe. The combination of ingredients are simply mind blowing and totally worth trying it out.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:09 pm

      I Love that Gunjan, mind blowing. It describes the flavors and textures to a teeeee!
      Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Reply Chandice Probst November 15, 2020 at 9:28 pm

    I love handheld food too especially savory ones with yummy beef filling like this! Fantastic, easy to follow a recipe thank you!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:08 pm

      Thanks Chandice. You are so right about handheld foods, casual, fun, easy and most of all super scrumptious!
      Have a wonderful week!

  • Avatar
    Reply Laura Arteaga November 15, 2020 at 11:13 pm

    Such a great recipe! Never tried Jamaican Patties but It’s definitely in my list. The pastry looks absolutely delicious!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:07 pm

      Thanks Laura, yes that pastry with some turmeric gives it great color and amazing flavor. It was so flaky and delicious, a great partner to the beef filling!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Connie November 15, 2020 at 11:36 pm

    Mmm! I’ve been to Jamaica. Montego Bay, specifically and I just loved everything about their culture. The food, the music, the people! Just a wonderful experience all around. These beef patties bring back so much joy. Can’t wait to make this!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:06 pm

      Hi Connie, it is a wonderful thing to experience culture, and you are so right about Jamaica and Montego bay. Absolutely wonderful!
      Have a great day!

  • Avatar
    Reply Debra November 16, 2020 at 8:08 am

    YUM…..everyone loved them. I’m going to make them again….half the size and serve them as an appetizer for Thanksgiving. Super tasty.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 16, 2020 at 4:05 pm

      Thank you Debra so much for trying these. What a great idea making them smaller and having them as an appetizer. So glad you liked them.
      Happy cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kate Hahnel November 20, 2020 at 1:48 pm

    I love Jamaican beef patties! This recipe nailed it!

  • Loreto
    Reply Loreto November 23, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    Thanks so much. So happy to hear that! It was our first time making them and we wanted to do them proud!
    So Glad you tried them!

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