Yesterday I wrote about making mincemeat for mince pies.
Mince pies are traditionally eaten at Christmas time and children leave one for Santa at the foot of the chimney on Christmas Eve.
There are other traditions and superstitions that I have to admit I hadn’t heard of, until I did some research for my blog:
- Did you know that when you make the mincemeat, you should only stir the mincemeat mixture clockwise, because stirring it anticlockwise is supposed to be bad luck for the up and coming year.
- When you eat the first mince pie of the season, it’s traditional to make a wish.
You should always eat mince pies in silence.
If you eat a mince pie each of the 12 days of Christmas, it is good luck for the up and coming year.
Mince pies should have a star on top, depicting the Christmas star that led the three wise men and the shepherds to baby Jesus.
At the weekend I made my mince pies, this is how I make them:
Sweet Pastry Mince Pies
1lb Plain Flour, plus extra for rolling.
10 oz. Hard margarine chopped
1 Tablespoon of caster sugar
A little milk
Icing sugar to dust the pies
Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 5 / 375F / 190C
Put all the ingredients in a bowl.
Rub the margarine into the flour using your fingers and thumbs, until it resembles breadcrumbs.
Add a little bit of water and mix with a round bladed knife. Keep adding the water a little bit at a time and mixing until it begins to stick together.
Then use your hands to form a ball.
Put some flour on your clean work surface and begin to roll the pastry. Every so often turn your pastry to make sure it doesn’t stick to your surface.
When you pastry is approx. 5mm thick, cut rounds using a pastry cutter.
Put each ‘round’ into a pastry case.
Put a teaspoon of your mincemeat into the pastry cases.
Cut some smaller rounds using a smaller pastry cutter.
Using your finger or a pastry brush, put a little bit of milk around the bottom pastry ‘round’ and then put the smaller pastry ‘round’ on top and firm gently around the edge.
Cut a cross in the top of each pie.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Leave to cool on a baking tray and then dust with icing sugar.
The mince pies freeze really well and only take half an hour to defrost if you have unexpected guests.
Thank you for reading my blog today