Monday, 22 December 2008

Yummy mince pies

We finally got the Christmas tree up yesterday. We have a teddy angel - the children (as teenagers) chose her one year and she is firmly established now.

My eldest daughter and I decorated the tree yesterday afternoon. It is looking so pretty this year and is a lovely tree even without the decorations on.

I couldn't sleep last night, so I went downstairs and made a batch of mince pies, trying out a new recipe.

I have adapted this recipe as it originally used a crumble topping (I'll add this bit too for you if you'd rather try it). The water was nothing like enough, so you will have to add more - I probably used 6 or 8 tblspns NOT just 2! It's from Good Food magazine five years back.

85g/3 oz butter, chilled and cut into cubes
175g/6 oz plain flour
1 tblspn light muscovado sugar (I used Demerara)
finely grated zest of 1 small orange (I used a large Satsuma)

For the Crumble Topping:

knob of cold butter (about 1 tblspn)
25f/ oz plain flour
1 tblspn light muscovado sugar
1 tblspn almonds, finelychopped

pastry cases: Blend flour and butter until resembling fine breadcrumbs and then add sugar and grated zest, and add 2 tblspns water, adding a few drops more water if it appears a little dry (think Sahara sands here! I used about 6 - 7 tblspns water). Preheat oven to 160 deg. Fan/180 deg. conventional/Gas 4.

Roll out pastry thinly and cut circles using a plain 6cm dia cutter. (I used a bigger one and didn't make them into mini cases as this suggested). I got a dozen bases and then cut star toppings from remaining pastry. Filling was my home-made mincemeat, and I poured a little orange juice over the mincemeat and glazed the stars with it too. Cook for 20 mins.

If you are using the crumble topping, mix fat and flour together until mixture like breadcrumbs then stir in sugar and almonds. Sprinkle as topping over mincemeat and bake for 20 mins.

Both: leave to cool in the tin before lifting out. Very yummy! If making a double batch, leave the excess pastry to cool in fridge in between batches.

If it goes very quiet on here, it's because I've come down with a bad fluey-cold or the flu, as our eldest daughter has it - raging temperature, aching all over - poor lass, she was weeping this morning. I'm hoping she will drop off to sleep now she's had an Ibroprofen - she's been awake most of the night too.

Merry Christmas to you all - though hopefully I will be able to say that on The Day.


A Bite of Country Cupcakes said...

Yum...I think it funny you couldnt sleep so you bake!
I hope your Daughter just has the one day whammy and then it goes,My Mum did.
At least she is in the right place with Mum to care for her...
Bear angle very cute too

nita x said...

jennie they look scrumdiddlyumptious :o) .

your bear fairy is gorgeous :o)

and sending get better quickley wishes for your daughter.

merry christmas :o)

GeraniumCat said...

We have a mouse angel, now over 30 years old.

Hope the flu doesn't last and you have a lovely Christmas.

Bovey Belle said...

Cupcakes - if I can't sleep, I get up and come on the computer. If I REALLY can't sleep, I go downstairs and make myself busy - usually the backlog of ironing, but today it was baking. I also managed to make a chocolate cake which I burned (but is edible), some Crunchie chocolate bar muffins, which I used the wrong flour for (doh!) and some pineapple and kiwi-fruit jam in which all the fruit rose to the top of the jars, leaving a gap at the bottom. I guess I should have stayed in bed!

Thanks for the get well soon wishes Nita - T's in the bath now and has been up all afternoon, keeping fluid levels up and feeling up and down, depending on how long it was since she last had an Ibruprofen. . . Her temperature's gone now though, so that's one positive thing.

Geranium Cat - a mouse angel - I like the sound of that. This year Christmas is really moving into grown-up territory, as the two younger offspring weren't bothered about dressing the tree . . . They're in that difficult stage between growing past it and finding the Christmas magic has flown, and then having long-term partners/children of their own and the magic returns . . .

Arlene Grimm said...

Love your decorations Jennie...those pies look yummy too. Have a blessed Christmas.

Jane Badger said...

Ooh snap - I did mince pies with stars on this year!