Thursday, 22 December 2016

DIY Christmas | Mince Pies & Crumble

At the end of last year, I resolved that although I was sure I didn't like mince  pies, I was missing out on a huge Christmas tradition and that I should change that for Christmas 2014.  I tried - even with a ratio of around 2 parts cream, 1 part mince pie - I'm still not keen........disguise it as a crumble? Let's give it a go.

822g Jar of Mincemeat
1 cooking Apple
1 roll of shortcrust pastry
Icing / Caser Sugar (for decoration)
Double thick cream / icecream / custard (to serve)

I started by cheating and buying the mincemeat - a 822g jar was more than enough for both the crumble [8 pots] and mince pies [12].  The problem here for me is the texture - raisons, currents.... I hate them.  So I had much fun popping them in a blender and turning them in to a Christmas smelling gloop.

I chopped 1 cooking apple in to small pieces, around raison size when I think of it, and added to a pan to cook through, with a little water [1 tablespoon] to prevent them from burning.  Stir regularly for about 10 minutes and check they are cooked with a fork [it should go through easily].
Transfer your 'gloop' in to the pan and mix through:
Add your mixture in to a ramekin and fill to about 2/3:
Add two parts flour and 1 part butter to a bowl [I had about 2 tablespoons to 1 tablespoon] and mix with your fingers in a bowl until it resembles breadcrumbs - add more flour/butter to the mix to suit your taste:
Add to the remaining 1/3 of your ramekin:
Pop in a 190 degree oven for 15-20 minutes [or at least until the tops is brown.
To finish, I added a sprinkle of sugar to caramelise on top as they cooled down a little and added a little [ok, a lot] or cream to serve.
Warning: it's sweet - and that's coming from someone with a sweet tooth [and the terrible dental history to prove it]!

So here is a quick & easy traditional mince pie make.

Like all foodie projects around this point, make life easier for yourself and buy the pastry - just buy it.
Unroll and plan which Christmas movie you will now watch with the time you have saved.
Grease your pie tray with butter and using a ramekin or mug, cut out your bases.
Add to the tray and fill 2/3 with your mincemeat mixture.  Using a small star cutter, I then created tops [any cookie cutter shape that has points that meet the base will work]:
Pop in an oven at 190 degrees for around 10/15 minutes until the tops are brown [once removed I added a sprinkle of sugar to caramelise on top, as with the crumble]:

Remove from the tin once cooled [mine needed a little help where the mixture had boiled over]
Finish with a dusting of icing sugar for the perfect Christmas treat:


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