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50 States 50 Recipes Michigan

Our next stop on the 50 states, 50 recipes tour is;

Michigan: http://www.50states.com/michigan.htm

State capital: Lansing

Largest City: Detroit

Admission to the Union: January 26th, 1837 becoming the 26th state


Michigan is a leading grower of fruit in the U.S., including blueberries, cherries, apples, grapes, and peaches. These fruits are mainly grown in West Michigan due to the moderating effect of Lake Michigan on the climate. There is also significant fruit production, especially cherries, but also grapes, apples, and other fruits, in Northwest Michigan along Lake Michigan. Michigan produces wines, beers and a multitude of processed food products. Kellog’s cereal is based out of Battle Creek, Michigan and processes many locally grown foods. Thornapple Valley, Ballpark Franks, Koegel’s  and Hebrew National sausage companies are all based in Michigan.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michigan)

When I think of Michigan I think of Detroit, but come to find out ya’ll there’s a lot more to see- check out these sites for tourism;



I have to admit ya’ll that when I think of Michigan I only think of Detroit.  Detroit is known as Motor City and the birth place of Motown.  Some of what are the best musicians of all time came out of the Motown studios, artist like Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5 and Michael Jackson.  M&M was born in Detroit and although I don’t personally care for his music, he’s a great supporter of his hometown.  Although Detroit had taken it on the chin lately ya’ll, it’s still a vibrant city with a great culture of art, sports, music and history.  If ya’ll get a chance to visit- you won’t be disappointed.

However, as I’ve done a little more rootin’ around I figured out that all of Michigan is as pretty as a speckled pup!  Not only do ya have the great lakes, lots of forest and natural areas, but there is a whole island in Michigan where cars aren’t allowed!  Can ya’ll imagine? An Island in Michigan where horse drawn carriages are still the norm! A quaint little place called Mackinaw Island- http://mackinac.com/content/general/presentation.html We’re headed there next vacation!  In honor of this whole island that is a blast from the past, I decided to make Michigan Pasties!

Original Pasty

3 c. flour

1 1/2 sticks butter (cold and cut into bits)

1 1/2 tsp. salt

6 tbsp. water


In a large bowl, combine flour, butter and salt.  Blend ingredients until well combined and add water, one tablespoon at a time to form a dough.  Toss mixture until it forms a ball.  Kneed dough lightly against a smooth surface with heel of the hand to distribute fat evenly.  Form into a ball, dust with flour, wrap in wax paper and chill for 30 minutes.


1 lb. round steak, coarsely ground

1 lb. boneless pork loin, coarsely ground

5 carrots, chopped

2 lg. onions, chopped

2 potatoes, peeled and chopped

1/2 c. rutabaga, chopped (can substitute turnip)

2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. pepper

Combine all ingredients in large bowl.  Divide the dough into 6 pieces, and roll one of the pieces into a 10-inch round on a lightly floured surface.  Put 1 1/2 cups of filling on half of the round.  Moisten the edges and fold the unfilled half over the filling to enclose it.  Pinch the edges together to seal them and crimp them decoratively with a fork.  Transfer pasty to lightly buttered baking sheet and cut several slits in the top.  Roll out and fill the remaining dough in the same manner.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Put 1 tsp. butter through a slit in each pasty and continue baking for 30 minutes more.  Remove from oven, cover with a damp tea towel, cool for 15 minutes. (http://www.hu.mtu.edu/vup/pasty/recipes.htm)

Pasty dough
kneading Pasty dough
Pasty filling
roll dough into 10 inch rounds
fill shells with filling
fold shell in half over filling, cut slits and seal edges
after baking cover with damp tea towel
serve warm or cooled and don't forget the ketchup!



I was told that a Pasty is pronounced Past-e, not Paste-ee, cause if ya’ll call it a Paste-ee in Michigan they’ll give ya the thing a stripper wears on her boobies, not the delicious meat pie you’ll be making with this recipe!   The history of this recipe comes from jolly ol’ England and was transferred to Michigan via immigrants.  It was a popular recipe for the working class men at lunch time, cause like the sandwich it didn’t require any silverware.  Think on this as the original fast food!  I can imagine a lot of wives made these to tuck into lunch pails as they’d be just as good cold as they are hot!


I can not explain why the word Rutabaga makes me laugh every time I say it- it’s just one of those funny soundin‘ words that makes me laugh.  So when I head to the grocery store and have to ask someone where to find one… I get a strange look every time I say it!  Can ya’ll picture it?  “Um, excuse me darlin‘ where would I find your (pause in hopes I won’t laugh) Rutabagas?” then I dissolve into that inappropriate laughter ya get at a funeral, ya’ll know the kind I’m talkin‘ about- when yer tryin‘ to be serious and ya just can’t manage it.  Needless to say I almost sent SGM Martha to the store to avoid the whole issue.  But I did get the Rutabaga… excuse me while I compose myself!  That was the hardest part of this whole recipe!

All the ingredients were real easy to find- aside from the embarrassment of having to ask for a Rutabaga… oh, my I’ve got the giggles again!  But as the recipe says, if you can’t find a Rutabaga, geez I’m about to wet my pants laughin’, you can substitute a beet or turnip.  Whew!


If  ya’ll can make a pie crust ya can make a Pasty!  It’s just a matter of dividing the dough into six smaller pies and fillin’ them with the meat.  Don’t forget to make the slits in the top, otherwise they’ll explode as the fillin’ cooks.


Review: scale of 1-5 stars; the more stars the better

Ease of preparation: *** easy enough if ya’ll have ever made a pie

Cost of ingredients: ***** had everything in the cupboard!

Taste: **** not a lot of spice (which is typical with English food) so I ate it with ketchup

Nutrition: **** meat and veggies with a little starch, not any worse for ya than a cheeseburger


So when you plan your next vacation ya’ll consider a diamond in the rough and head to Michigan.  I personally never knew there were so many places to enjoy aside from the big city of Detroit.  And if ya’ll make it up there… to to Motown records and sing yer hearts out!  So until next week when we head to Wisconsin, May all your journeys be safe and your eats be good!



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