Baking & Bread
Puddings & Desserts
Personally, I much prefer a mini, bite-sized mince pie to a standard one - and if you make little pies, they have the added advantage that not only do they go very nicely with a cup of tea mid-morning (or mid-afternoon or indeed any time of day!), they also make lovely sweet canapés for parties, not to mention great ‘thank you’ gifts for Christmas hosts if you pop them in a cellophane bag and add a festive ribbon.
And if I do say so myself, these particular mini mince pies might be the nicest you’ll ever taste! Not a claim to be made lightly, but their super-crumbly, shortbread-syle pastry makes them really stand out - and if you use a jar of good-quality mincemeat, you can just jazz it up a bit with stem ginger and citrus zest so there’s no need to faff about making your own if you don’t have the time (or the inclination). Enjoy!
Whizz the flour, sugar, cubes of butter, one of the eggs and the milk together in a food processor until it starts to come together as a dough. Tip out onto a floured board and knead briefly into a ball, then cut in half, wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 20 mins. Meanwhile, mix together the mincemeat, ginger and citrus zest.
Roll one half of the pastry out on a floured surface (leave the other half in the fridge for now) and cut out circles a little bigger than the holes of a mini muffin or tartlet tin, then use them to line the tin. Spoon half a teaspoon of the mincemeat mixture into each mini case.
Take the rest of the pastry out of the fridge, roll it out and cut out circles as lids (then, if you like, press out a shape from the centre of each lid - I used a Kitchen Craft mini star cutter that I bought recently on Amazon). Brush the rim of each pastry case with beaten egg, then gently press the lids on top - the egg should help to seal them. Brush with egg and bake in a preheated oven at 200C (fan oven) for 10-15 minutes until golden. Dust with icing sugar.