December is here and plates of delicious mince pies, that somehow manage to conjure up the essence of Christmas in a mouthful, will soon be stacked on Christmas tables throughout the land. For a true taste of Christmas, you cannot beat homemade.
This simple little recipe is easy to follow. You will need:
- 250g of frozen butter
- 400g of plain flour
- Cold water
- A jar of mincemeat
- Pastry cutters
- A cupcake tray
- An egg.
Grate frozen butter and add to the flour. Use your fingers to rub the butter into the flour until you have a mixture resembling fine breadcrumbs. Add a small splash of cold water until the mixture binds together (add the water cautiously). Cover the pastry ball with cling film and place in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Dust a surface and roll out your pastry until it is about 3.5mm thick. I usually use a circular cutter for the base and stars for the top but use what you have at home. Add the bases to a cupcake tin, spoon in the mincemeat and cover with the lid. Brush beaten egg over the lid.
I decided to add a quirky twist to mine this year by adding wooden popsicle sticks to my festive shapes. I placed half of the cutouts on three baking paper lined trays, leaving enough space for the sticks. Brush with beaten egg and then place a popsicle stick into the middle of each one. Place about 1 tsp of fruit mince filling in the middle of each and then gently press a second pieces of pastry cutout over the top and carefully press down on the edges with your fingertips or a fork. Make sure not to leave any big gaps or it will leak. Use the tines of the fork to create vent holes in each tart. Brush with more beaten egg and then sprinkle a pinch of the sugar/cinnamon mixture on the top. For anyone that doesn’t like mincemeat try a yummy nutella filling instead.
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Let the tarts rest in the fridge while the oven preheats. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown on top. Cool completely on a wire rack and store in an airtight container. Best eaten fresh and still warm but should last a couple days in an airtight container, and warmed slightly before eating and serve with dustings of icing sugar and enjoy.
Until next time, ciao from us all.