Wednesday, 21 November 2012

I spy mince pies!

Christmas season has arrived in the Daboo household with the traditional making of mince pies! It's something we do every year, in fact last year it was one of the first things I did when I was allowed out of hospital for a day. We generally have the Christmas music baring in the background whilst me and Mum stand up to our elbows in pastry.

This year, along with our traditional mince-pie-sized mince pies, we made some mini mince tarts with some new tools mum got from a Pampered Chef party. We used this mini-muffin pan:
Deluxe Mini-Muffin Pan and this mini-tart shaper: Mini-Tart Shaper
They worked really well and are a great (not too scary!) bitesized festive snack.
Here are the mini tarts as they went into the oven:

And here are the finished products:

Obviously the recipe is a highly-secret, highly-classified piece of information...but I'm going to be nice and make an exception for my wonderful readers! So here we go...

World-famous Daboo Mince Pies
Makes around 24 mince pies
8oz plain flour
1/4 tsp salt
4oz butter
1oz caster sugar
1/2 beaten egg (or 1 beaten egg yolk mixed with a little water)
Mincemeat (roughly one 400g jar)


  1. Sieve flour and salt into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the butter in small cubes and rub the butter into the flour until it is a similar consistency to breadcrumbs.
  3. Stir in the caster sugar.
  4. Make a well in the middle of the mixture and add the beaten egg. Stir until the mixture clings together, adding very small amounts of water as necessary. Make sure you don't add too much as it will reach the right point very suddenly and any more will make the mixture too sticky.
  5. Set the dough aside to rest, covering the bowl with a plate, whilst you lightly dust your surface with plain flour,grease your cupcake pan and preheat your oven to 200°C/180°fan.
  6. Take out the dough and knead it gently. You want to feel as though you are gently guiding the edges of the pastry into the middle.
  7. Lightly dust your rolling pin with flour and start rolling your dough. Always roll away from you and then back towards you, never sideways. Roll about 3 times backwards and forwards and then gently rotate the dough 90°. Repeat this until your dough is a couple of mm thick.
  8. Take two cookie cutters, one large and one slightly smaller, preferably with "frilly" edges. Cut out equal numbers of large and small circles (you can pick up the "scraps" of dough and knead and roll them again to get more).
  9. Place the large circles gently into the wells in your cupcake pan.
  10. Take a teaspoon and put a small amount of mincemeat into each one. Take care not too overfill them or they will leak when you cook them!
  11. Take a small circle and dampen a finger with water. Run it around the rim of the small circle and one of the large circles and then place the small circle as a lid on your mince pie, squeezing the two circles gently together all the way around the edge.
  12. Take a fork and gently make one set of small holes in the top of each mince pie. (This lets any steam out and stops them bursting in the oven.) Brush the tops with water and sprinkle with a little caster sugar.
  13. Pace the tray on the middle shelf of the oven for 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on them and take them out when they are just turning golden brown. Take them out of the pan immediately (we find using a curved grapefruit knife makes this very quick and easy) and set them on a wire cooling rack.
Best served warm with some brandy butter or a nice scoop of the trusty old vanilla ice cream!


  1. YOU MAKE MINCE PIES????? How did I not know this? They are the one thing I have to order from England at Christmas. Will you object to making them in the summer?

  2. I would LOVE to make you some mince pies! We may need to investigate where you can buy the mincemeat (or I could just bring some with me!) but I think a mince pie is good no matter what the time of year!