Today for lunch I had one of my favorite traditional English foods... a pasty. While I was in St. Albans today I saw a pasty shop, so I had to stop and have one.
A pasty is a mixture of meat and vegetables baked in a pastry dough. The pasty is sealed by crimping the dough to form a thick crust on one side. The pasty is most associated with the English region of Cornwall, where the miners would take pasties with them to eat in the mines for lunch. Supposedly the miners would hold the pasty by the thick crust. The crust was then discarded, and the miners' dirty fingers never touched their food. However I have also read that they were wrapped in paper or muslin, and that the entire pasty was eaten.
(Some time ago I wrote a post about the Mexican mining town of Real del Monte. Many men from Cornwall emigrated to the town to work in the mines. Today the town is filled with little restaurants selling... "pastes" (the Spanish spelling of pasty).