Recipe by MamaBaker, Esther Bird.
MamaBaker, Esther Bird kindly shares her family recipe for Fruit mince pies! Don’t they look amazing?
“This makes an ENORMOUS amount – about 5 litres. I share it with friends, make 4 dozen mince pies and still have mix left over!
If you cannot cope with the thought of all that faffing about with pastry and turning on the oven to fight the air conditioner, then the fruit mince is VERY GOOD mixed in with vanilla icecream or simply spooned onto crackers! Also my friend Kate made some delicious fruit mince mixed into bread dough (think cinnamon buns style) with some she found in her fridge in July.”
Mince pie pastry
2 2/3 cup plain flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup sugar – optional
250 ml milk
Whiz up the flour, butter and baking powder and sugar (optional) at this stage til the mix looks like bread crumbs and the butter is cut into very tiny pieces.
Tip mix into a big bowl and add the milk. Mix into a dough. Add more flour if too sticky.
Roll out in batches on a very well floured surface and cut out circles and stars for your pies.
This quantity was enough to make 4 dozen pies (tartlets). I use the shallow “gem” style baking trays but you can easily use mini muffin tins.
I used about 1 litre of fruit mince to make the 4 dozen pies.
Fruit Mince Ingredients:
250 g currants
50 g mixed peel
8 apples – no need to peel, but do remove the cores
4 more cups of sultanas
grated rind and juice of 2 lemons
grated rind and juice of 2 oranges
2 cups of brown sugar
2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp all spice
5 tsp cinnamon
3 tsp salt
1 cup brandy (!!)
First whiz up your dried fruit mix (do it in batches in the food processor).
Then whiz up all the apples and mix everything else together in a huge bowl!
Add the extra 4 cups of sultanas, citrus and spices and mix well.
This year we ground up our spices on the day – such a difference! I am usually pretty heavy handed with the spices. Probably I put in a lot more than this. Do what you like! It’s a pretty flexible beast, this year we used limes off our tree and whizzed up some mandarins from a neighbour’s tree. Previously I’ve had some dried figs to throw in – yum.
Keep it in the fridge or freezer, it matures beautifully! I’ve still got some in the fridge from last Christmas and it’s October. Still OK.
Fill the cases with the fruit mince and top with the stars.
Bake your pies at 150 degrees for 10-12 mins, or until the pastry is pale golden.