Sunday, 2 August 2015

Perfect Pies and Christmas Traditions

What would Christmas be like without a wee mince pie or two? A classic British treat, they are gorgeous cold, or my favourite way – still warm from the oven. Delicious.

Now, of course some people don’t share my view. In fact, most of my family hate mince pies (an idea which is odd to me). So, two years ago I tried out a new wee idea – jam tarts made with the same pastry as the mince pies. And guess what? They were definitely A HIT! The first time I baked these I made a grand total of 31 of these wee beauties, – two days later – there was 2 left. Yup, you read that right. Two.

So without further ado, here are the two recipes. Try them out and let me know what you think!

Mince Pies
Ingredients
450g butter
700g plain flour
200g caster sugar
A jar (or 2) of mincemeat
1 small egg, beaten
Icing sugar, to dust

Rub the butter into the flour, then mix in the sugar and add a pinch of salt.  Combine the pastry into a ball – don’t add liquid – and knead it briefly. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a bun tin with the pastry. Spoon the mincemeat into the pies. Roll out pastry and cut rounds to cover each pie, press the edges gently together to seal. Brush the tops of the pies with the beaten egg. Bake for 20 mins until golden, leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. Lightly dust with icing sugar.

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Jam Tarts
Ingredients
450g butter
700g plain flour
200g caster sugar
A jar (or 2) of jam – I used strawberry
1 small egg, beaten
Icing sugar, to dust

Rub the butter into the flour, then mix in the sugar and add a pinch of salt.  Combine the pastry into a ball – don’t add liquid – and knead it briefly. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a bun tin with the pastry. Spoon the jam into the tarts. Roll out pastry and cut rounds to cover each pie, press the edges gently together to seal. Brush the tops of the pies with the beaten egg. Bake for 20 mins until golden, leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. Lightly dust with icing sugar.

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Try them out and send me a tweet! I'd love to know what you think!

Naomi x

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