I have to admit I was a bit scared making the pastry from scratch but it was so much easier than The Great British Bake Off led me to believe. And the taste? Not wanting to get to big for my invisible chefs hat.. but they were the best darn mince pies I have ever eaten (which is a lot.)
225g butter straight from the fridge.
350g plain flour
100g golden caster sugar (or 50g brown 50g caster is fine)
Pinch of salt
1 egg (for eggwash)
icing sugar , to dust
- Preheat oven to 200C
- For the pastry, rub together the butter and flour. This is easier the colder the butter is. Try not to overwork or it will become too crumbly.
- Next mix in the caster sugar and a pinch of salt.
- Bring the pastry together into a ball, resist the urge to add liquid (trust me it’ll work without), and briefly knead it.
- The dough should be fairly firm, a bit like shortbread dough. Using a circular cutter (or upturned beaker) cut 16 and use them to line cupcake tins and spoon mincemeat on top.
- For the tops I like to make stars, less pastry but more festive and just as tasty. But you could make normal lids with circles slightly smaller than the bases. Press edges gently to seal.
- Beat the egg and brush the top of the pies. Bake for 20 minutes until pastry is golden brown.
The dough can be used straightaway or chilled, the pies (before cooked) could be kept in the freezer for up to a month and the finished pies will keep for 3 to 4 days in an airtight container… but why wait? They certainly didn’t last that long in our house, in fact by Boxing Day we had to make a second batch to keep demanding relatives at bay!