I had to get hold of mincemeat for my mince pies back at the beginning of talks of a lockdown two, partly because I kind of expect for this to go on longer than we are being advised. It’s not a secret that, whether or not Christmas will be on lockdown, these sort of things will be running out within days.
Alas, we go with the times – and we make our own mince pies in house this year. If you plan on doing the same, I would recommend buying a jar on your next supermarket run. If, instead, you make your own – kudos to you, I have never attempted in the past 10 years given I am the only one eating mince pies in this household.
The recipe I am about to provide you with is from the one and only, Nigella Lawson. I have changed some things around to make it easier for everyone, but otherwise it is unchanged, because why would you change something when the recipe is simply that great?
- 240g plain flour
- 120g cold butter
- juice of 3 clementines
- pinch of salt
- 350g mincemeat
- icing sugar for dusting
- Start by measuring the flour in a ziplock bag, then add the butter using a teaspoon, a dollop at the time. Seal the bag and shake well to cover the butter, then place in the freezer for 20 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the clementine juice and salt, and leave in the fridge.
- In the bowl of your food processor, place the flour and butter you have previously stored in the freezer and blitz until it starts coming together, then add very slowly the clementine juice, until the dough starts coming together.
- Place the mixture on a work surface and combine the dough using your hands. Cover the dough in cling film and place in the fridge for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 220°C.
- Once the time is up, start rolling a piece of the dough (place the rest back in the fridge) as thinly as you can so that you have a light but sturdy pastry case.
- Cut the pastry using a circle cookie cutter and place in the tart tins, making sure they are slightly wider than the actual case, press the pastry gently into the mould and fill with the mincemeat.
- Decorate the top with either an extra disc or a star, as I did, and place lightly on the mincemeat.
- Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, and make sure to keep an eye on them as they are very quick to bake.
- Dust with icing sugar and serve hot from the oven. If serving later, they can be reheated slightly, but make sure the icing sugar goes on after being heated.
They keep for a week, make sure they are stored in an airtight container. They also freeze well and keep for up to 3 months: make sure to defrost overnight and reheat before serving.
These are absolutely delicious to make, and easy too – so that if you wanted to make them with your kids, it is indeed an option.
I adore mince pies and believe they have become a staple for my Christmas celebrations since moving to the UK – even though the girls seem to hate them fully. I have yet to bring them home to my parents, but I am quite sure my dad would enjoy them a lot, while my mum would probably hate them as much as the girls do.
So apparently these are served with brandy butter and such, and I have yet to try them with it, but stay tuned on our Instagram as I am sure this year is the good year for this – all the alcohol!
Make sure to check out more Christmas recipes here.