Every family has their Christmas traditions. My dads mince pies were a tradition enjoyed by all. They are the stuff of legends.
Every Christmas Eve, my dad would be holed up in the kitchen for hours baking hundreds (ok not hundreds but at least 60!) mince pies and a couple of Apple pies to boot. They were a speciality. And enjoyed by my many siblings hot out of the oven and until recently, the grand children too. But poor health has seen the passing of the tradition and now my mum makes a batch for us to enjoy over the festive holiday.
And now, I have the recipe which I want to share with you all. Hoping you cherish them as much as we do.
- 400g flour
- 200g butter (plus extra for greasing)
- 50g sugar (plus extra for dusting)
- 1 medium free range egg yolk
- 4-6 tbsp of milk (plus extra for glazing)
- 700g of mincemeat (store bought)
- Preheat the oven to 180° (fan assisted)
- Grease your cupcake tins with butter- you’ll need about 24. Sprinkle a light dusting of flour over them as well.
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowel
- Add the butter and combine with the flour using your fingers. You want to make fine breadcrumbs
- Add the sugar and egg yolk to the flour and butter mixture. Combine with your fingers
- Add milk to the mixture until it forms a soft dough- again use your fingers as this’ll the the best way to judge the dough’s texture
- Once formed, transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth
- Roll the dough out to a thickness of 1cm, using pastry cutters of 2/ and 5/8ths or just slightly larger, cut out 24 bases and add to the cupcake trays
- Roll the dough back up into a circular shape and follow the rolling and cutting stages again. This time use 2 1/4 sized pastry cutters, cut out another 24, for your tops.
- Prick the bases of the pies with a fork and then spoon in 3/4 of a teaspoon of the mincemeat into each pie base.
- Top the pies with the pastry and press down slightly
- Glaze the tops of the pies with a little milk on each using your fingers and sprinkle a slight dusting of sugar to each too.
- Pop in the oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly, take this opportunity to dust with a little more sugar. Serve warm as they are or with cream.
Top tip: the dimensions for the pies above will make quite shallow casing but we think it gives the best pastry/mincemeat ratio. Experiment with this phase until it suits your preference.