Jamaican Beef Patties

Dough
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
5 tablespoons cold water

Mix together dry ingredients thoroughly in a medium size mixing bowl. Add vegetable shortening and cold water; rub them into the seasoned flour with your fingers until you have a stiff dough. If the dough is too dry to hold together, add more cold water, 1/2 teaspoon at a time. Wrap the dough in plastic and chill it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

Meanwhile, make the filling.

After the filling is made, roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface to 1/8-inch thick. Cut the dough into circles 5 inches in diameter. This is easily accomplished by pressing the edges of a 5-inch diameter plate or bowl into the dough, and then following the outline with a sharp knife to cut the circles. Roll out the scraps and cut more circles until all the dough is used.

Assemble beef patties by spooning about 1 1/2 tablespoons filling on one side of a pastry circle. Fold the other half of the circle over the filling so the edges meet, forming a half-moon. Seal the edges by pressing lightly with your fingertips and then with the tines of a fork. Place the beef patties on a baking sheet. Brush the tops of the beef patties with the beaten egg and bake them on the upper rack of a preheated 400 degree F oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove the beef patties from the oven and transfer them to wire racks. Serve them while they are still warm.

Makes about 1 dozen.

Filling
1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound hot or sweet Italian link
    sausage, removed from casing
1 medium yellow onion, finely minced
1 large clove garlic, finely minced
1/2 Scotch bonnet chile or 1 jalape?o,
    seeded and finely minced (optional)
1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup water
2 medium scallions, root ends removed, minced
1 large egg yolk, beaten

Saut? ground beef, sausage, onions, garlic and chile in a large skillet over medium-high heat until brown, about 15 minutes, breaking the meats up with a fork as they cook. Reduce heat to low; add bread crumbs, curry powder, thyme, sage, salt, pepper and water. Cook the filling, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Stir in the scallions. Remove from the heat and allow the filling to cool to room temperature.

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