Date and apple mince pies

Date and apple mince pies
  • Serves icon Makes 16
  • Time icon Hands-on time 40 min, oven time 15 min, plus chilling

Try an alternative mince pie this Christmas with mincemeat made with dates, sultanas, apple and pecan nuts.

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
331kcals
Fat
16.5g (9.1g saturated)
Protein
3.8g
Carbohydrates
40.4g (25g sugars)
Fibre
2.5g
Salt
0.2g
Calories
331kcals
Fat
16.5g (9.1g saturated)
Protein
3.8g
Carbohydrates
40.4g (25g sugars)
Fibre
2.5g
Salt
0.2g

Per pie

Ingredients

For the mincemeat

  • 250g pitted dates, finely chopped
  • 50g sultanas
  • 25g pecans, finely chopped
  • 30g suet
  • 125g grated bramley apple (1 large apple)
  • Zest 1 lemon
  • 50ml brandy
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch ground cinnamon

For the pastry

  • 160g unsalted butter, softened
  • 75g golden caster sugar
  • 3 medium free-range egg yolks
  • 250g plain flour, plus extra to dust
  • Demerara sugar to sprinkle

Method

  1. Combine all the mincemeat ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. For the pastry, put the butter and caster sugar in a bowl and beat with an electric hand mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in 2 of the egg yolks, one by one, adding 1 tsp water with each. Gently mix in the flour until just combined. Bring the dough together with your hands, then wrap in cling film and chill for 30 minutes.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to the thickness of a £1 coin. Stamp out 16 rounds with an 8cm cutter, then use to line a fairy cake tin, pushing them into the moulds with a knuckle or small ball of excess pastry wrapped in cling film. Roll up the remaining pastry, wrap in cling film and chill again.
  4. Fill each pastry case with about 2 tbsp mincemeat, then chill. Heat the oven to 200°C/fan180°C/gas 6. Roll out the chilled pastry to a pound-coin thickness, then stamp out 16 x 6cm star shapes. Top the mince pies with the stars, then brush with the remaining egg yolk and sprinkle with demerara sugar.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes or until crisp and golden. Allow to cool in the tins before gently turning out.

delicious. tips

  1. To sterilise jars and lids, wash them in warm soapy water, rinse well, then dry in a low oven and leave to cool. Or run through a recently cleaned dishwasher on the hottest setting.

  2. Make the mincemeat filling up to 3 months in advance and keep tightly sealed in sterilised jars (see tip).

    The baked mince pies will keep in the freezer, sealed, for 3 months. Defrost, then warm through in an oven heated to 170°C/fan150°C/gas 31⁄2 for 10-15 minutes.

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