Competitors battle heavy weather to make World Pasty Championships


Competitors battled the Beast of the East on Saturday for a chance to try their luck in the seventh World Pasty Championships.

More than 200 pasties were entered into the competition, which was the finale of the first ever Cornish Pasty week.

Held in the shadow of the world famous biodomes of the Eden Project in Cornwall, contestants came from as far as the US to celebrate the county's most famous culinary creation.

Virginia-based Pure Pasty Co took the Open Savoury Company category with its barbecue chicken pasty made with sweet potato, zucchini, red pepper, corn and pineapple.

Founder Mike Burgess, originally from Cheshire, attended with his bakery manager, New York-born Jennifer Swanston.

Mr Burgess, who opened his bakery in 2010, said: "We are ecstatic with the win - over the moon. The winning pasty is a real team effort - an American fusion."

Gillian Francis, from St Cleer, near Liskeard in Cornwall, won the Cornish Pasty Amateur category and came third in the Open Savoury Amateur category despite only learning to crimp - create the decorative edge - two weeks ago.

The mum-of-three, who works as a teaching assistant, said: "I've been testing out my pasties on my three sons for years but didn't know how to crimp properly so I had to ask my next-door neighbour to teach me a few weeks ago.

"This is the first time I've entered the World Pasty Championships and I'm absolutely overwhelmed and shocked to win. I thought my boys were playing a joke on me!"

Elsewhere, nine-year-old Summer Lovejoy, from Plymouth, scooped Cornish Pasty Junior, while Jodie Heath, from Bodmin, took Open Savoury Junior with her smoked seafood pasty.

Other winners included Luisa Ead, from Padstow, who netted Open Savoury Professional with her chicken dinner pasty, and Glyn Meredith, from Porthleven, who was crowned Open Savoury Amateur for her skirt, cheese, peppers, paprika, garlic and coriander pasty.

Eden Project spokesman David Rowe said: "There was a great spirit today at our seventh World Pasty Championships. The pasty bakers made heroic efforts to be here despite everything the weather could throw at them this week.

"Huge thanks to our friends from the Cornish Pasty Association for helping us deliver the event as fitting end of the first-ever Cornish Pasty Week."

The event was hosted by the Eden Project in partnership with industry body, the Cornish Pasty Association.