FOR THE MINCEMEAT FILLING (Make the day before)
- 50g butter
- 225g raisins
- 225g sultanas
- 225g currants
- 50g ready-to-eat dried apricots, chopped
- 100g glace cherries, halved
- 100ml brandy or rum
- 1 medium eating apple
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- 180g Tate & Lyle Dark Soft Brown Sugar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp water
FOR THE PASTRY
- Beaten egg, to glaze
- 200g plain white flour
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp Tate & Lyle Icing Sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
- 100g chilled butter, cut into pieces
- 1 egg yolk from large egg
- 2 tbsp chilled water
HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE
1 To make the mincemeat, put the raisins, sultanas, currants, apricots, glace cherries and brandy or rum into a large mixing bowl. Stir well, then cover and leave in a cool place for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally, or leave to stand overnight.
2 When the fruit has soaked, peel, core and chop the apple, then blanch it in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Drain well. Add to the fruit mixture with the cinnamon and nutmeg and stir well.
3 Add the Tate & Lyle Dark Soft Brown Sugar to the fruit mixture. Warm the lemon juice, water and butter in a saucepan until the butter has melted. Add to the fruit and stir well, then pack the mincemeat into sterilized jars. Seal and label. Keep in a cool place for up to 3 months.
4 To make the pastry, sift the flour, salt and Tate & Lyle Icing Sugar into a large mixing bowl and stir them together. Rub in the chilled butter with your fingertips until it looks like fine breadcrumbs.
5 Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture. Beat the egg yolk with the water and stir it in, using a round-bladed knife, then bring the dough together into a ball. Turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead lightly until the dough is smooth. Wrap in cling film and chill for 15 minutes.
6 Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan oven 180°C/Gas Mark 6.
7 Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface until 5mm thick. Stamp out 12 rounds with a 7.5mm cutter, then 12 rounds with a 6mm cutter, re-rolling the pastry as necessary.
8 Place the larger rounds of pastry into patty tins and add 1 heaped tsp of the mincemeat. Brush the pastry rims with water, then place the lids on top, sealing the edges together. Use a sharp knife to make a small hole in the top of each pie. Brush with the beaten egg, to glaze.
9 Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Cool for a few minutes, then sprinkle with icing sugar and serve warm or cold.
Try not to handle the pastry too much as this makes your dough a lot tougher.