Recipe: Gran’s Christmas Mince Pies De Luxe

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For my family, my Gran’s Christmas Mince Pies have marked the festive season for as long as we can remember. Unlike any of the less-than-average store-bought variety, her homemade pies are always in hot demand. Many a lazy Christmas afternoon has been spent lounging in Gran and Gramps’ living room, a tea in one hand and a warm, comforting pie in the other.

It’s an annual indulgence and a beloved tradition that I am excited to share with you all this Christmas. So, be sure to read on for the now not-so-secret recipe and let me know how your pies turn out…and what traditions they create. Oh, and have a very Merry Christmas!

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Mince Pies (20)
All of the ingredients needed for making your Christmas mince pies

Orange Pastry for Mince Pies

This light, crumbly, rich pastry is the be-all of these mince pies. The pastry’s slight zest, which comes from the orange rind and juice, gives it a luxurious edge which will leave you wanting more…

Ingredients

  • 500g (1 lb) plain flour
  • 175g (6 oz) icing sugar or caster sugar
  • 375g (12 oz) butter
  • finely grated rind and juice of 1 large orange

Method

  1. Sift the flour and sugar into a mixing bowl.
  2. Cut the butter into small cubes. Stir the cubes into the flour and then rub gently with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  3.  Stir in the grated orange rind. Then, using a knife, stir in the orange juice until the dough just begins to stick together.
  4. Gather up the dough and pat it into a ball. Wrap the dough in cling film (or, a bee’s wax wrap) and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more before using.

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Mince Pies De Luxe

Mince pies can often be quite dry but by mixing the mincemeat with cream cheese you can give them a really smooth texture and an indulgent flavour. So, what are you waiting for? Get baking…

Ingredients

  • 250g (8 oz) full fat cream cheese
  • 50g (2 oz) caster sugar
  • 500g (1 lb) orange pastry (above)
  • Oil/butter for greasing
  • 500g Old English fruit mince
  • Milk to glaze (optional)

Method

  1. While waiting for the pastry to cool, put the cream cheese and the caster sugar in a bowl and beat them until smooth. Set aside.
  2. When the pastry is ready, knead it lightly before dividing it in half. Roll one half out more thickly than usual. Using a 7.5cm (3-inch) pastry cutter, cut out 24 rounds, re-rolling the pastry as necessary.
  3. Line greased patty tins with the rounds. Fill to about half their depth with mincemeat. Then, put a teaspoon of the beaten cream cheese mixture on top of the mincemeat and smooth the top.
  4. Roll out the remaining pastry and, ideally using a smaller cutter (5cm or 2-inch) or similarly-sized star-shaped cutter, cut out another 24 rounds. Place one atop of each pie. If necessary, use a fork to make some ventilation holes in the top pastry-casing.
  5. Brush the tops of the pies with cold milk (optional) and bake in the centre of the oven, preheated to 220°C (Gas Mark 7) for 15 minutes or until light golden-brown. Remove from oven and leave to cool in patty tins.
  6. When the pies have cooled, gently ease them from the tins with a round-bladed knife.
  7. Serve either warm (which is best) or cold paired with a cup of tea or coffee.
Mince Pies (19)
Bon Appétit! I hope you enjoy these mince pies as much as I do…

3 comments

  1. Really enjoyed reading this joyful blog. Just made a batch of mince pies- the best. Also, the “Ladies Guide” sounds very helpful. I’ve really enjoyed all the items in your Blog, Jessy. They really inspire an urge to visit the places you mention. I felt quite emotional reading the ones from the UK. You have a wonderful way with words.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you continue to enjoy the blog posts, Gran. It’s great to read a comment from you on here! I hope I can keep delivering interesting content. x

      Like

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