Cherry mince pies
- November 2021
- Makes 16
- Hands-on time 45 min, plus chilling
These cherry mince pies have the filling-to-pastry ratio just right. Lots of juicy mincemeat encased in golden shortcrust pastry.
Catering for allergies? Take a look at our nut, gluten and dairy-free mince pies.
- 15.5g (8.6g saturated)
- 43.2g (25.2g sugars)
- 375g plain flour
- 250g cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp finely grated orange zest (optional)
- 2 medium free-range eggs
- 1 tbsp chilled water, plus 1-2 tsp
- 1kg homemade cherry mincemeat (or use good quality ready-made)
- 2 tbsp demerara sugar
- Icing sugar to serve (optional)
You’ll also need…
- 2 x deep sided muffin tins
- 10cm cookie cutter
- For the pastry, pulse the flour, butter, sugar, salt and orange zest (if using) in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Mix 1 egg with 1 tbsp chilled water. With the motor running, add the mixture to the dough and pulse a few times until the mix comes together. If there are still dry bits, add another 1-2 tsp chilled water and pulse again to combine.
- Turn out the pastry onto the worktop and bring together into a ball (don’t overwork it). Flatten into a disc, wrap well and chill for 1 hour or until firm.
- Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to about 3mm thick. Use the cookie cutter to stamp out 16 rounds, re-rolling offcuts as needed. Put a round into each muffin hole, pressing gently so the pastry comes a little higher than the edge, then fill each with 60-65g mincemeat.
- Bring the remaining pasty into a ball, then roll out to roughly 2mm thick (see Know How). For a lattice-effect, use a sharp knife or fluted pastry cutter to cut thin strips, about 7-8mm wide. Lay 4 pastry strips over each fruit mince pie in a lattice, then press at the ends to seal. (For a closed-top finish like the pie on our cover, use a round cookie cutter to stamp out discs just larger than the muffin holes, then press to seal.) Trim the excess pastry, then chill for at least 30 minutes until firm.
- Heat the oven to 180°C fan/gas 6. Put 2 large baking sheets in the middle of the oven to heat up. Whisk the remaining egg with a splash of water, then brush over the pastry tops. Sprinkle each pie with a little demerara sugar, then put the tins on the hot baking sheets and cook for 25 minutes. If the tops begin to brown too quickly, loosely cover with a sheet of foil.
- Cool the pies in the tins for 15 minutes, then carefully remove from the tins and put on a cooling rack to cool. Dust with icing sugar to serve, if you like.
The pastry will keep in the fridge for up to 2 days or in the freezer for 3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge, then roll. The baked mince pies can be stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days
The key to a short pastry is to use cold dough. Roll and shape the pies
in batches and, if the pastry gets soft, chill it again between rolling and shaping. To make the pastry by hand, rub together the flour and butter in a large bowl until the mix looks like breadcrumbs. Mix in the sugar, salt and orange zest, then quickly stir in the egg/water mixture. Add a little more cold water if needed to bring the pastry together into a ball.
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