No.160 Blackchapel Sweet Mince Pies

This is not your normal mincemeat. It is a delicate balance between spices and alcohol notes, whilst not being overly sweet.

Neither is the pastry recipe. It is based off a traditional Scottish hot water crust. Its purpose is to let the flavours of the mincemeat come through. It is more complex to make but really makes the pie feel “old fashioned”.

Mincemeat

Makes: 1 kg

100g of Prunes

400g of Raisin & Sultanas

Zest & Juice of 2 Clementines

1 Large Cooking Apple

200g of Soft Light Brown Sugar

75g of Suet

1 teaspoon of Ground Cinnamon

1 teaspoon of Ground Cloves

1 teaspoon of Cracked Black Pepper

50ml of Whiskey

25ml of Brandy

25ml of Cherry Brandy

  1. Peel the apple and finely dice. Slice the prunes into small pieces. Roughly chop the raisins and sultanas.
  2. Add the fruit to a large bowl with the whiskey, brandy, cherry brandy, clementine juice and zest. Leave for 30 minutes to 1 hour to let the fruit soak.
  3. Add the soaked fruit to all the remaining ingredients in a large pot. Simmer for 15 minutes on a low heat.
  4. Sterilise jars for containing the mincemeat.
  5. Whilst the sweetmince is still warm fill the jars.
  6. Store for at least one week to mature and use within 28 days.

Pies

Time: 45 minutes

Makes: 8

400g of Plain Flour

40g of Beef Dripping

40g of Butter

200ml of recently boiled Water

1 tablespoon of Brown Sugar

½ teaspoon of Salt

400g of Mincemeat

40ml of Milk

Muffin Tin for 12 Muffins

  1. Set up a heat proof bowl over a pot of barely simmering water. Add the beef dripping, butter and water. Leave to melt.
  2. Once melted add the flour, sugar and salt. Mix until a warm dough has formed.
  3. Remove the dough (careful as it will be warm) and place on scales. Return 2/3 of the dough to the bowl. Roll out the remaining 1/3 to a thin sheet and cut into circles to make pie lids according to the size of your muffin tin you will be using to cook the pies in. Remove a centre from the lids about a 1cm diameter circle. Return any spare dough to the bowl.
  4. With the remaining dough divide into 8 balls. Turn off the hob but keep the bowl over the pot of water (the residual heat with keep the dough workable).
  5. Roll out a ball into a thin sheet and drape into a muffin tin and push down into the tin. If you get any holes patch up with some of the extra pastry coming over the side.
  6. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  7. Fill the cases with mincemeat and place the circle of pastry on top. Crimp the pastry together and remove any excess pastry.
  8. Brush the top of the cases with milk.
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the pastry is starting to turn golden in parts

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