Welcome to the Pasties Page on the Upper Michigan Informer.  The pasty has been part of Upper Michigan history for many, many years and the tradition lives on.  The pasty is an important sales item for the Upper Peninsula business owners when visitors from other states or countries come for a visit to this great land.   Also with the ease of the internet, pasties can be shipped all over the world.  The pasty has such a rich history in the U.P. that it now can be found in several locations throughout the Upper Midwest.  We will relive the history of the pasty, the ingredients that make this delicacy special, and why it is so popular in the U.P., on this Upper Michigan Traditions' Page.











meal for miners who had no time to come above ground for lunch. Some miners reheated their pasties underground; others kept them at body warm in a chest pocket.  Another way of warming a pasty while underground in a mine was to set it on a shovel and hold the pasty up to the light of a lantern.  


How Do You Say Pasty?



Of course, people living in the U.P. and Yoopers far away chuckle when the word pasty is mispronounced, but it certainly is understandable.  Just look at the controversy over the word "sauna" for gosh sakes!  Those people unfamiliar with a pasty pronounce it as "pay-stee," like when a person first says "paste", and then adds the "y."  But that's not it at all.  It is actually pronounced "pass-tee."  In this pronunciation, you first say "pass", then add the "ty".  It's as easy as that! 






The famous pasty was brought here by the copper and iron miners from Cornwall, England (Cousin Jacks). The Cornish miners and their wives as "Cousin Jenny's" are properly given the credit for bringing the pasty to the Upper Peninsula in the early 1850's when both the copper and iron mines were first being opened.  The original pasty that came over in the 1850's from Cornwall, England along with the miners, was hearty and hot.  It was a hand-held "no dish"

History Behind the Pasty



A pasty has the following ingredients inside it: pork, beef, potato, rutabaga, carrots and spices baked in a light pie crust.  Pasties can be baked in various shapes and sizes, including D-shaped, round, oval, square, large, and small!  Pasties don't always have to have all these ingredients, as there are a different variety.  They can come with or without rutabaga, no salt, veggie, chicken and special orders may be placed for individual types at various pasty shops throughout the U.P. 


some on one side of each piece of dough. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.

Fold the pastry over the filling to make half-moon shaped pies. Seal the edges and cut a couple of small slits on the top. Bake on a cookie sheet at 375 degrees F. for 30 to 35 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees F. and bake 15 more minutes.






A Common Pasty Recipe

What is Inside a Pasty?

Put the flour in a bowl and cut in the shortening, lard and suet. Add just enough water to make a soft dough. Divide the dough into four parts and roll out each piece into a circle about the size of a dinner plate.

Crumble the meat into a bowl and stir in the potatoes, onion, rutabaga and carrot. Divide the mixture into four parts, putting some on











Yield: 4 servings 

2 c  Flour 
1/2 c  Shortening
1/4 c  Lard 
1/4 c  Scraped suet 

1 1/4 lb Beef, coarsely ground
4 md Potatoes, diced
1 lg Onion, chopped
1/4 c Rutabaga (swede), diced 
1 Carrot, diced 
Salt and pepper  


Difficulty: moderate. Time: 30 minutes preparation, 1 hour cooking and cooling.  Precision: measure the crust ingredients.





E-Mail Me
Updated: 2/1/09