This year’s mince pie production process started sometime last autumn. Probably at the end of October.
The mincemeat recipe I use is my Nana’s (great-grandma, my mum’s mum’s mum). I’m very lucky to have vague memories of her, she died when I was 3, in her nineties. This takes a good day to go from ingredients to jars but if you do a double batch you’ll only need to make it every 3 or 4 years (depending on how much you give away or how many mince pies you eat!) I think I get about 6 jars out of a batch. Its much nicer than shop bought, more flavour and less overwhelming sugary sweetness.
- 8oz sultanas
- 8oz raisins
- 8oz currants
- 8oz suet
- 12oz peeled and chopped apples
- 1oz almond flakes
- 1 orange zest and juice
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 4oz candied peel
- 12oz soft brown sugar
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 4 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- Mix dried fruit, apples, almonds, and candied peel.
- Add orange and lemon zest and juice. Mix it all in.
- Add suet, spices, and sugar and mix.
- Leave in a bowl for 12 hours.
- Put in a slow cooker for 2 hours on medium.
- Once completely cool, add brandy and give it a good stir to mix the cooled suet in.
- Put in sterilised jars and leave for at least a month.
If all that sounds like just too much effort, this is the easy bit. I buy pre-rolled pastry from the super market. We just cut circles for the cases, blind bake for 10 mins, add mincemeat (warmed in the microwave for 30s and mixed), then top with pastry stars. I like to do a quick egg wash so they go lovely and shiny. Then bake for another 10 mins and bingo.