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Mince Pies!

Friday, December 13th, 2013

 

 

I love Christmas. It’s my favourite time of year. When it comes to the food, turkey and Christmas cake I can take or leave (I’d much rather have goose and a Bûche de Noël), but mince pies are non-negotiable. Can you believe I have friends who’ve never had a mince pie?! Yes, they’re Canadian, but even so..

I made these last time I was at home for reading week, using my mum’s homemade mincemeat. If you haven’t got homemade stuff then Waitrose do some really good stuff.

These outdo the ones you can get from the supermarket by far. The pastry is buttery and flakey with just a teeny kick of citrus and the filling is perfect, although maybe I’m a little bit biased.

To make 24 you need:

150g unsalted butter

350g plain flour

The zest of 1 orange (make sure it’s unwaxed!)

Cold water

1 jar of mincemeat

1 beaten egg

You’ll also need a cupcake tin and two round or fluted pastry cutters, one 7cm and on 6.5cm. If you haven’t got pastry cutters draw circles on baking paper and use these as a template for cutting you circles, they just won’t be as neat.

Start off by cutting your butter into cubes and chuck it in a bowl with your flour and salt.

Photo 01-12-2013 10 33 46

Rub it together (use the tips of your fingers and thumbs) until you have what looks like bread crumbs.

Photo 01-12-2013 10 46 57

Mix in your orange zest and add a dash of water. Stir it all together, everything should start to come together. Keep adding water and stirring until the pastry has come together and formed a ball. Be careful you don’t add too much water though. You’ll get mince pies with soggy bottoms, which no one wants…

Pop your pastry in the fridge to chill for about half an hour. While your pastry is in the fridge, grease your tin and cut strips of baking paper about ten centimeters long and a couple of centimeters across. Lay these in the individual places where your pies are going to go. It makes it so much easier to get the pies out of the tin once they’re cooked! Preheat your oven to 200 degrees.

After half an hour, dust your work surface with a little bit of flour and roll out your pastry. Try to get it to about half a centimetre thick. Cut 24 of the larger circles and 24 of the small ones. Don’t worry if you have to roll your pastry out a couple of times. As long as you don’t handle it loads it’ll be fine.

Photo 01-12-2013 11 43 43

Carefully lift the larger circles into the tins and add a teaspoon or so of mincemeat in each space.

Photo 01-12-2013 12 00 49 (HDR)

Add a smaller circle and brush each pie with a little bit of beaten egg.

 

Photo 01-12-2013 12 04 37 (HDR)

Pop your pies into the oven for 25 – 30 minutes, they should be a beautiful golden brown when they’re done.

Photo 01-12-2013 12 35 12

Take your pies out of the oven and make sure you resist the temptation to dig in straight away. They’re going to be hot! Pop them on a cooling rack for 10 minutes before stacking them high and covering with a snow storm of icing sugar.

Photo 01-12-2013 12 44 35Photo 01-12-2013 12 44 54 (1)

Dig in!

Photo 01-12-2013 12 49 55

What’s your favourite Christmas treat?

 

 


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About Abby

IMG_0866 Reader. Writer. Kitchen Witch. Taking on the world armed with a wooden spoon. Licking cake bowls since 1992.

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