Sugar is substituted for honey in this recipe by Rose Prince. I saw this recipe about a month ago in the Telegraph but never got round to making it. If I make these mince pies in the next 12 days, that’s still within the Christmas season, right?
Makes 2 large jars mincemeat and 12 large mince pies. You will need a 12-hole bun tray
For the mincemeat
2 Bramley apples, grated
Grated zest of 1 orange and 1 lemon
5 tbsp honey
125g/4oz beef suet, grated (or processed)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground mixed spice
2 tbsp brandy
For the pastry
375g/13oz plain flour
1 level tsp salt
250g/9oz butter, cut into 1cm cubes
100-150ml/3½-5½fl oz ice-cold water
Caster sugar for dusting
Mix together all the mincemeat ingredients, then put in jars, seal and leave for a minimum of two weeks.
To make the pastry, sift the flour into a bowl and add the salt. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles rough breadcrumbs, then add 100ml of the water and mix to form a dough. You may need 50ml more water.
Knead the dough for a minute until smooth, then wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes.
To make the mince pies, preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6. Roll out the dough to ⅛in thickness. Cut 12 large rounds to fit inside the recesses of the bun tray, and 12 smaller “lids” for the pies. Line the bun tray with the large rounds, then fill to ¾ depth with mincemeat. Brush the edges with water then put on the lids, pinching the edges so they are well sealed.
Use a sharp knife tip to score – but not cut – the tops of the pies. This means the pie lids will be domes and not sink around the mincemeat. Bake the pies for 15-20 minutes until crisp and pale gold. Remove from the oven and dust with caster sugar. Serve warm.