MINCE PIE RECIPE

Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without a couple of mince pies; it is probably the first festive thing you will eat followed by a gingerbread latte in a Christmas cup. Costa I'm looking at you, and if you're going to eat a mince pie, it should be a homemade mince pie.

There, I said it, shop bought mince pies are an abomination just not right. Which is exactly why I am sharing my family, Grandma Smith's, mince pie recipe with you, they are so easy to make there really is no excuse.

So, get the mulled wine brewing, the buble tunes singing and the mincemeat marinating, you'll be feeling Christmassy in no time.
Ideally the mincemeat should be made as far ahead as possible to allow plenty of marinating time, a week is ideal but 24 hours will do!

INGREDIENTS
mincemeat
200g sultanas
200g raisins
100g dried cranberries
100g chopped apricot
1 grated apple
zest of 1 orange
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 orange
6 tbsp. brandy
100g suet
50g brown sugar

shortcrust pastry
175g plain flour
75g cubed salted butter
25g icing sugar
 zest of 1 orange
1 beaten egg

METHOD
  1. Put all of the mincemeat ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Stir well until all of the ingredients are well combined. 
  2. Pour the mixture into a food processor (you may need to do this a little at a time) and pulse a few times until the mixture is blended but some pieces of fruit are still chunky.
  3. Tip the mixture into pre-sterilised jars and put in a cool dry place to marinade for as long as possible.
  4. To make the shortcrust pastry, add the plain flour, butter, icing sugar and grated orange zest to a food processor and blend until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. 
  5. Pour the beaten egg into the processor, a little at a time, and pulse until the mixture just comes together as dough.
  6. Tip onto a floured surface and gently knead to form a ball. Wrap in Clingfilm and place in the fridge for 20-30 minutes or until firm.
  7. Preheat the oven to 180C fan.
  8. Roll the dough out on a floured surface to around 3mm thickness, until large enough to get 18 mince pies out.
  9. Cut out 18 fluted circles and gently press into a bun tin. From the remaining dough cut out chosen shapes to top the mince pies.
  10. Fill with the pre-prepared mincemeat, place a cut out shape on top and place in the oven for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.
  11. Once removed from the oven place onto a wire rack to cool. 
 If I do say so myself, this mince pie recipe is truly delicious, Granny Smith outdid herself! I hope you give them a go, as always please share your photos with me on Instagram or Twitter!

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