Thursday, 29 November 2012

Christmas #3: Mince pies

I love mince pies. I really do, I have a tendency to pick the pastry off of shop bought ones. Not in a snobby way, I just don't really like pastry that's not got butter in it. 

So, mince pies. At the Asda event we got to have a good play at pastry making. I would like to point out to the snotty Mrs Carter who threw my first attempts at pastry in the bin, that I just made pastry at Leiths. And no one judged me. So there! 

We used Extra Special mincemeat which comes in two varieties - Brandy & Port, and Whiskey and Orange. I've made mincemeat in the past, but honestly - sometimes it's just quicker and easier to open a jar. The Extra Special mincemeat certainly smelled homemade. For homemade read alcoholic, which is exactly how I like my mincemeat. Oh and without nuts and peel. Not that I'm fussy.

Mince pies

Rich, sweet shortcrust pastry

170g plain flour
Pinch of salt
100g unsalted butter
2 tbsps caster sugar
1 egg yolk 
2 tbsps iced cold water

Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl
Cube the butter and rub into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs. If you have hot hands like me, work quickly!
Add the sugar and mix
Add the water to the egg yolk and add to the flour mixture
Use your hands to mix to a firm dough

Pantry note: If you're hot handed like me, you could easily do this in a food processor and do it yourself from the rolling out section.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees C
Split your pastry into 2 - one should be about 2/3 of your mix for the bases, and the other third is for your pretty stars

Roll out the larger portion to about 3mm thickness
Cut out 12 circles using a large fluted cutter
Put each circle into a section on a jam tart tray

Roll out the smaller portion to the same(ish) thickness
Cut out 12 stars and put them on a baking sheet

Chill both trays for about half an hour

Remove the pie bases and fill with a teaspoon of mincemeat - don't be tempted (ahem) to overfill as when the mincemeat bubbles up it will make the pastry stick to the sheet. Nothing to see here, move along please *innocent eyes*

Put the stars on top of each mince pie and bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown
Remove from the tray and cool on a wire rack
When you're ready to serve, dust with icing sugar

Pantry note: I've frozen my mince pies as I knew we wouldn't eat them - we have liebkuchen and blondies to eat up at the moment. I froze them in a single layer the same day I made them, and will defrost and warm through in the oven

1 comment:

Lauralemonpie said...

These look so cute! And a house filled with lebkuchen sounds like a very happy one!


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