There’s nothing quite like that first mince pie of the season, is there? Yesterday I popped to TK Maxx and picked up a couple of bits including this AMAZING ceramic bun tin and a cute little freeform bowl. Time for some baking, then:
For the pastry, you’ll need:
200g cold butter
400g plain flour
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 clementine or tangerine, zest and juice
1 jar of mincemeat
Sherry, brandy or similar
1. Cut the butter into cubes and pop it into the food processor with the flour, sugar and a pinch of salt. Mix gently until it resembles breadcrumbs
2. Add in the egg and the clementine juice and zest and let it continue stirring gently until the mixture just comes together. Form the dough gently into two balls, clingfilm them and put them into the fridge to rest for 20 minutes or so – not too long as it will be too hard and difficult to work with (you should get 12 pies out of each ball of pastry).
3. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees/gas 5
4. Roll out your first ball of pastry until it’s about 1/2 cm thick and cut out 12 circles with a cutter that’s about 1cm larger all round than the holes in your muffin tin. Press the circles gently into the tin. Add a splash of whatever booze you have (I used Pedro Ximenez – lovely and Christmassy) to your shop-bought mincemeat, then put a teaspoon of mincemeat in each one – don’t go mad as it will ooze out everywhere (although I quite like it when they do that – who wants perfect pies? You can buy those in the shops).
5. You can either cut smaller circles for the tops, use a star or something else, or just leave them plain. Give them a little brush with some beaten egg, then add a sprinkle of sugar (I like this cinnamon sugar from Steenberg’s).
6. And that’s it! Bake for about 15 minutes until they’re golden brown. Leave them to cool before taking them out of the tin, then scoff!
If you want to try something a bit different, why not try topping your pies with sponge mixture like my festive pastry cakey pies.