One things for sure – I aint no Nigella. But, every once in a while, I surprise myself. This time around, I’ve surprised myself by making some seriously good home baked mince pies…
I LOVE mince pies. Like, I could easily get through an entire pack myself. But homemade ones really do taste the best. Plus, I love them to have quite a deep casing, filled with lots of juicy filling. By making your own, you can make them much bigger, with a few additions to the filling.
So take a read at how I make this homemade version. I promise you, it’s super simple…
225g cold butter, diced
350g plain flour
100g golden caster sugar
x2 Tangerines or Satsumas for the skin (to grate)
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 small egg
Icing sugar, to dust
- To make the pastry, rub 225g of cold butter cut into squares into 350g plain flour, then mix in 100g golden caster sugar and a pinch of salt. Golden Caster sugar gives more of a crunch and a golden finish.
- Combine the pastry into a ball – don’t add liquid – and knead it briefly. The dough should become fairly firm, a little like shortbread dough. At this stage some people chill the dough, wrapped in cling film, for an hour. I usually just pop it in for 15 minutes whilst I make up the mince meat mixture, but it’s your call!
- Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan 180C. Line 18 holes of two 12-hole patty tins, by pressing small walnut-sized balls of pastry into each hole.
- For the filling, spoon 280g mincemeat into the bowls, and lightly grate tangerines/satsumas into the mixture. I also add a teaspoon of cinnamon, and mix together.
- Take slightly smaller balls of pastry than before and pat them out between your hands to make round lids, big enough to cover the pies. You can cut these into star shapes if you like!
- Top the pies with their lids, pressing the edges gently together to seal. I lightly wet the edges of the lids so that they seal with ease.
- Beat 1 small egg and brush the tops of the pies. Bake for 20 minutes until golden.
- Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack. To serve, lightly dust with icing sugar. They will keep for 3 to 4 days in an airtight container.
My learnings from the first time baking these included that my pastry was perhaps a little too thick. Next time, I just need to make sure I roll out the pastry a little finer.
As you can see from the photo below, the filling is rich and juicy! Lovely! Marks and Spencers – watch out…