Fruit Mince Pies
This Fruit Mince Pie recipe has a crumbly crust with a boozy spiced fruit filling. Perfect for making in large batches for all those parties and lunches you have to attend, as they can be made and frozen in advance. Just leave them to defrost at room temperature.
Recipe updated 9th December 2017
If eating a fruit mince pie on each of the 12 days of Christmas brings wealth and prosperity, according to folklore, then I’m on track to be a multi-millionaire. This Fruit Mince Pie recipe has a crumbly crust with a boozy spiced fruit filling. You leave the raisins, currants and sultanas to soak for at least two days in a broth of brandy, orange juice and zest, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter to give the insides a lovely festive flavour. Perfect for making in large batches for all those parties and lunches you have to attend, as they can be made and frozen in advance. Just leave them to defrost at room temperature.
HOW TO MAKE FRUIT MINCE PIES
Click to watch how to make Fruit Mince Pies
FRUIT MINCE PIES
Makes: 24-30 fruit mince pies
Difficulty: medium, involves making shortcrust pastry
NB. Prepare the fruit mince at least 2 days before baking the pies.
Medium airtight container for marinating the fruit filling
A round cookie cutter or glass rim, generally 80mm will do
12 hole muffin tin
Star shaped cookie cutter, no wider than the width of a muffin tin hole
Fruit Mince Filling
50g Blanched almonds, finely chopped
1 large granny smith apple, peeled and grated
165g Brown Sugar
75g Unsalted Butter, melted
95ml Brandy or Rum
½ teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground Cloves
1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
Finely grated zest of 1 Orange and its juice (approx. 150ml)
520g Plain Flour
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
370g Unsalted Butter, cold, grated
100g Caster Sugar
4 large Egg Yolks
2-4 tablespoons Lemon Juice (or cold water)
Fruit mince filling prepared earlier
1 Egg White, lightly beaten
Icing Sugar Mixture, to dust
Fruit mince filling
Place all the sultanas, currants and raisins in a food processor and pulse them in small batches. If you don’t have a processor, then hand chop them into small mushy pieces.
Add the pulsed fruit into the airtight container, along with the grated apple, chopped almonds, melted butter, brandy or rum, orange juice, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon and orange zest.
Stir well until all ingredients are combined. Put the lid on and let it marinate in the fridge for at least 2 days. Stir every few days until you need it.
Pastry shell dough
Add the flour and baking powder to a food processor. Grate the cold butter over the top. Process until the butter is incorporated and looks like breadcrumbs. Don’t let it form a dough just yet. Tip the mixture into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and egg yolks until a dough forms.
Tip the dough onto a floured workbench. Gently knead the dough until it comes together. If the dough is too crumbly (in cold weather), add a bit of the cold lemon juice or water to bring the dough together. If the dough is too sticky (hot weather) add a bit more flour to make it a workable dough once more.
Split the dough into two balls, flatten into discs and wrap them in clingfilm. Let them cool in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before use.
Fruit mince pie assembly
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius (180 fan-forced; 390 F). Grease the 12-hole muffin tin with non-stick spray. Cut 12 thin strips of baking paper a little longer than the width of the cupcake hole. Place each strip in a muffin hole so the two ends hang out the sides like wings. These become handles to remove each mince pie from the tray.
Remove the dough and fruit filling from the fridge. Gently knead the dough again then roll it out between two floured sheets of baking paper. Use your rolling pin to roll it 35mm thick.
Cut rounds of dough out using your round cutter or rim of a glass. Gently press the cut dough into the hole of the muffin tin to form the casing. If the pieces aren’t coming away cleanly from the baking paper as you cut them out, knead in a little more flour to the dough.
Place a heaped tablespoon of fruit mince filling inside the pastry casing. Fill to the top of the pastry case. Don’t let the fruit touch the pan itself or it will get stuck when it bakes.
Knead together the scraps of dough. Use the star cutter or round cutter to cut tops for the pastry casings. Place the lids on each fruit mince pie. Brush the tops with beaten egg white.
Check oven has reached the correct temperature. Place the pies in the middle of the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes approximately. They are done when the pastry has turned golden brown. If not, add another 5 minutes to the timer and check again.
Let the fruit mince pies cool completely in the pan first. Pull gently on the baking paper wings to remove each pie. Decorate with a dusting of icing sugar.
- Sweet shortcrust pastry is fussy depending on the room temperature where you are baking it. In colder weather, you might need to add a little water or lemon juice to the dough. In hot weather like Australia here, the butter melts too quickly and we need more flour to make the dough less sticky as a result.
- If you don’t have a food processor you can use your fingers to work the butter into the flour until a breadcrumb texture forms. But if the weather is hot, your fingers might melt the butter too quickly, so a food processor will help you out.
- Pies will keep at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
- Mince pies can be frozen once baked, and brought to room temperature naturally before baking.
Recipe adapted from Margaret Fulton