A Christmas staple this week, there are few things signalling the impending holiday season more than Mince Pies stacked high on supermarket shelves. But why buy when you can bake!, fresh Mince Pies are so much better than anything shop bought. It was with great joy yesterday I attended a call-out to one of our Lake District cottages (thankfully an easy fix) to find our guests all gathered in the kitchen making a proper home cooked meal for a birthday celebration.
There is a myth that pastry is difficult and can only be made by people with cold hands. Well cold hands might help but it’s nothing you can’t work around using a food processor (pause for gasps by the purists). I can’t even say I make my own mincemeat, I quite like to use a jar of Coop mincemeat and spice it up with apple and cinnamon. Santa won’t make it back up the chimney in our house!
- 300g mincemeat (homemade or jar)
- 1 small apple
- 1tsp cinnamon
- 200g plain flour,sifted
- 40g golden caster sugar
- 75g ground almonds
- 175g butter, cold and diced
- 1 large egg, beaten
- milk to glaze
- icing sugar to dust
Place the flour, butter, sugar and almonds in the food processor and mix on the pulse setting until the mix resembles breadcrumbs, then slowly add the egg through the feeder tube (or for traditionalists with cold hands rub the butter into the dry ingredients then stir in the egg). In the processor the mix is ready when it forms a ball which spins around the mixer.
Wrap the pastry in cling-film and leave to cool in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
Tip the mincemeat into a bowl add the cinnamon, then peel and chop the apple into very small cubes which are added to the mincemeat. Stir in the apple quickly to prevent browning. Cover and put in the fridge.
Lightly butter a 12 hole tart tin.