to your Favourites...
Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without mince pies! They are really easy to make and are infinitely better than shop bought ones because, not only do they taste better, but they aren’t full of chemicals we don’t know about.
- For the mincemeat:
- 600g cooking apple (4)
- 1.5kg mixed dried fruit
- 200g mixed peel
- 250g suet
- juice and zest 3 oranges
- juice and zest 3 lemons
- 300g soft brown sugar
- 350g caster sugar
- 300ml brandy
- 20g mixed spice
- 10g ground ginger
- 10g ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- For the mince pies:
- about 250g of the mincemeat
- 1 × sweet pastry
- some icing sugar for dusting
Preparation Time: 15 minutes (+15 minutes for the mincemeat)
Cooking Time: 20 minutes (+30 minutes for the mincemeat)
Serves: 12 mince pies (and about 1½ litres of mincemeat)
- To make the mincemeat, weigh out all the mincemeat ingredients, peel and grate the apples, zest and juice the lemons and oranges.
- Put all of the mincemeat ingredients except for the suet into a large pan over a medium-low heat, mix everything together and cook it at a gentle simmer for 30 minutes with the lid on, stirring it occasionally.
- Remove the pan from the heat, keep the lid on the pan and allow it to completely cool to room temperature (ideally overnight). Then stir in the suet and then either pour it into jars or make mince pies.
- To make the mince pies, first make the sweet pastry.
- Then heat the oven to 170°c.
- Roll out the pastry to a thickness of about ½cm on a floured work surface.
- Using a pastry cutter, cut out disks of pastry about one and a half times as big as the diameter of your muffin tin moulds. Then press the disks into the moulds making sure that there are no air pockets underneath the pastry and that it is pressed into the corners.
- Put enough of the mincemeat into each one so that it comes up to just below the top of the pastry (this will leave a small gap inside the mince pie that allows the mincemeat some room to expand when it is cooked and should help prevent them from exploding in the oven).
- Re-roll the pastry to the same thickness as before and, using a smaller pastry cutter, cut out disks the same size as the diameter of the moulds. Put these on top of each pie and press them down using the reverse end (the blunt side) of the same pastry cutter.
- Put the pies into the oven and bake them for 20 minutes before removing them and allowing them to cool to room temperature.
- Dust them with icing sugar and serve. Bear in mind that the mincemeat will remain very hot for quite some time after cooking them.