Mince pie mayhem

I made a big pot of cranberry mincemeat a few weeks ago and made mince pies on Christmas Eve. I put a few hours into making my large batch of mince pies and made quite a mess. I taste tested the mincemeat (a la Nigella) which  was pleasing and got to work on my sweet shortcrust pastry. I greased my tins rigorously and rolled out my pastry cases. I used a cornflour based recipe which was very short and delicious but very difficult to work with. I popped my mincemeat into the cases and put the tops on and baked them. 

  
As you can see I cut out holly for some and made lattices for others. They turned out pretty good when baked…

  

However, 50% of my batch wouldn’t come out of the tin and looked like I had sat on them.

  
So beware, best to twist them out of the tins and if you think you did a good job greasing .. think again and add more butter! 

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Mince pie hunt

It’s official. Christmas is on its way. I just ate my first mince pie of the year and it was scrumptious. Good buttery pastry filled with sweet, sweet fruit. This particular mince pie was from Aldi, which I would recommend. Usually each year I work my round each of the supermarkets to find the best mince pie. I think last year it was between M&S and Morrisons.  I can’t wait to get baking some mince pies this year, I really like stamping out the pastry which is also my favourite bit about biscuit making too. One year I made my own mincemeat and it was an extremely boozy Nigella affair in which I remember spending a long time searching for my final stone in the pan. I think a better methodology would pay off this year. If you come across an excellent recipe or a shop bought mince pie that needs attention because it is just fabulous, please fill me in on the details.