There is nothing like a lovely homemade mince pie to get you in the mood for Christmas. This recipe was originally by Paul Hollywood but I have added a bit more sugar than he does to give just a bit more sweetness. Very easy to do. You have to make the pastry in advance but after that they are super quick to assemble. Enjoy!
- 150g butter, softened – cheeky microwave sesh
- 215g plain flour
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- Bought mincemeat (Sainsbury’s is actually cheaper than Tesco)
Cube the butter and pop it in a bowl with the flour. Now crumble it – this means you basically (in the nicest way) fondle it a bit; kind of gently squeeze it all with your hands. It’ll turn into a crumbly mix.
Now chuck in the egg and butter. Grab a wooden spoon and mix. Top tip is to stab the yolk with the spoon as it just makes the process easier. It will quickly turn into a thick dough.
Chuck a large pinch of flour onto a wooden board then knead the dough a bit. It will be quite wet to start with but should end up being the consistency of malleable Blu-Tack (great analogy, I know).
Wrap in cling film and leave in the fridge until you actually want to make the mince pies (for me this was 24 hours).
When you are ready to make them, remove the cling film and roll out the dough (on a floured board otherwise it will stick) – it wants to be about 5mm thick. Some recipes will tell you to divide the dough at the beginning but I think you’ll inevitably get it wrong (I would) so I advocate cutting out the base and the top at the same time. I suggest you use a large glass as a cutter for the base and a slightly smaller one for the top.
Grab a muffin/cupcake tin, grease it with some butter and then pop the bases in. Now add as much mince as you dare, then cover with another top bit. Repeat this until it has all gone! If you have any stuff left over, why not decorate the tops?! Then beat up an egg with a fork and, using your fingers, paint on a light covering. This will make the mince pies go a lovely golden brown.
Cook for 20 mins at 180; put them quite near the bottom of the oven for the first 15–16 mins then bring them closer to the top to brown for the remainder.
Sprinkle some icing sugar over the top to make it all look pretty.
So if you are just not up for making pastry, this is the next best thing. They are so easy it is unreal, but obviously you don’t get the satisfaction or “wow” factor as when you make the pastry yourself.
- Scraps of ready-roll puff pastry, cut into circles
- Some mince (go to Sainsbury’s it is cheaper than Tesco)
- Brown sugar
Cut the pastry into circles using a glass. Pop some mince on top in the middle. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Fold over one side of the circle so it looks like the picture (a semi circle) and pinch close.
Using your finger, gently paint the tops and cook for about 10–12 mins at 180 (or until they have turned a lovely golden brown).
… So no matter how far up the lazy scale you’re feeling, you can treat your family and friends to some mince pie loving when you get back home for the holidays!