"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > Recipes & Ingredients > International Cuisines and Ethnic Cookery
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-13-2005, 05:12 PM   #1
Executive Chef
 
amber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Maine
Posts: 4,099
ISO mince pies (British)

I would love to try my hand at mince pies (british, not the American version). Ishbel? Or anyone else from that area please help.

__________________

__________________
amber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2005, 05:50 PM   #2
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: USA,Colorado
Posts: 358
Well, first you need to make your mincemeat NOW, so that it has time to mature. American mincemeat is really horrible (sorry, but it is), but luckily, really good home-made mincemeat is very easy to make (no cooking involved):

In a large, covered pot (a stockpot would be great), Mix together all the following ingredients:

12oz currants
8oz golden raisins
12oz ordinary raisins
3oz mixed glace peel (American peel is too chunky for good mincemeat, so chop it up a bit finer before you use it)
1lb firm, crisp apples (peeled and chopped to about 1/4" cubes)
1lb light brown sugar
1lb shredded suet (you will have to buy this online, or from your local British store...look for the brand name 'Atora'. You can buy either beef or vegetarian suet - I like to use low-fat veggie suet)
1 level tsp grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
Grated rind and juice of 1 orange
1 cup or either brandy or rum (or both mixed together! :) )
1/2 cup of sherry (any type, sweet or dry, cream or golden)

Mix everything up in the pot, cover and leave overnight. The next day, stir thoroughly and then put into clean jars (makes about 6 x 1lb jars). If you don't have jars, then plastic food storage boxes (rubbermaid, sterilite, tupperware...) will do just as well. Leave to mature for as long as possible before using (If you make it now, it will be ready for use by about the middle of December).

Now for the pies:

You will need a 12-cup muffin tin, some paper muffin cups, 3" and 2.25" round pastry cutters, a lightly beaten egg, pastry brush and some shortcrust pastry (home-made or ready-made pie crust). Put the paper cups in the muffin tin. Roll out the pastry to about 3/8" thick and cut out twelve 3" circles. Press these down into the paper cups and up the sides (they will come up about 1/2" around the sides - they won't come up to the top of the paper cups, this is because traditional mince pie tins in England are much shallower than muffin tins). Brush around the edges of the pastry with beaten egg, then drop in about 1 heaped teaspoon of mincemeat into each pastry shell. Gently press on 'lids' made from 2.25" circles of pastry, then pierce the centres with a fork or knife to allow steam to escape. Bake at 400F for around 20 minutes. When nice and golden brown on the top, remove and immediately sift some icing sugar (powdered sugar) over the tops using a small seive (a tea strainer works well). Remove from the muffin tin and allow to cool completely on a wire rack before storing in an airtight tin or plastic storage box (put parchment paper between layers of pies). They will keep for at least 4 weeks at room temperature, so because my dh loves them so much, I usually make around 100-150 mince pies each year and then they (just about) last us through New Year LOL!

Heating and Serving:

Mince pies are always best served warm - so just heat them up for a few minutes in a toaster oven or conventional oven. The traditional way to serve them is with Brandy or Rum butter - you just gently lift the lid off the hot pie and add a small knob of the butter, then replace the pastry lid and eat....Heaven!!!! To make Brandy or Rum butter, just cream together 8oz unsalted butter, 6oz light brown sugar and 5 tablespoons of brandy or rum. Spread into a small bowl, cover and keep refrigerated (again it will keep for around 4 weeks, so you can just use it as needed).

Please note that brandy butter/rum butter is NOT served hot or melted - the idea is for it to partially melt with the heat of the pie or pudding :)

If you are planning on also having plum pudding for Christmas Dessert, then brandy/rum butter is also wonderful served with that too. If you DO have plum pudding, then remember to douse it with brandy/rum and flambe it before serving!

Enjoy :)

Paint.
__________________

__________________
British ex-pat living in Colorado, USA
Paint is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 03:32 AM   #3
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
Here's what I posted last Christmas prep season!

Christmas mince pies


Mind you, I used ready-made mncemeat last year (if you buy a really good brand, with lots of fruit and alcohol in it, then it's really hard to tell the difference between that and home-made stuff.
__________________
Ishbel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 12:14 PM   #4
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: USA,Colorado
Posts: 358
Yes - you might try your local British store for jars of English mincemeat - but I have to say that even the imported stuff isn't as good as I used to get back home...they seem to have taken the suet out of it (FDA again, scared to death of Mad Cow Disease LOL!), and there often isn't any alcohol added.

Ishbel...American Mincemeat is the worst thing I've ever tasted (apart from Hershey's chocolate and the American version of Maltesers). There is no suet in it, no alcohol, and it looks like a light brown mush. Tastes nothing like proper mincemeat either. It's sold in jars, or (can you believe this?) as dried 'stuff' that you reconstitute with water.....I bought it once...never again LOL!

Hugs, Paint.
__________________
British ex-pat living in Colorado, USA
Paint is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 05:58 PM   #5
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
Hello Paint, long time no 'see'!

BLECH!

It doesn't have that MUCH suet in it, but you'd certainly notice it in the finished product if you left it out.

What about suet pastry? What do Americans use for that?
__________________
Ishbel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 06:06 PM   #6
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Mt. Co,pass south Australia
Posts: 12
Send a message via ICQ to Angel Send a message via AIM to Angel
Meat pie recipe

4 and 20 Meat Pies
Categories: beef, Australian, pie, meat,
Yield: 12 Servings

Base:
8 oz. Flour
tsp. Salt
pt. Water
2 oz. Beef drippings

Top:
12 oz. Puff pastry
Beaten egg for glaze

Filling:
1 lb .Minced beef
1 "cube" beef stock
1 tsp. Salt
Pepper to taste
1/2 pt. Water
1 pinch Nutmeg
3 tbl. Flour
Brown food coloring


Mix all base ingredients thoroughly. Roll out to about 1/8" thickness. Roll out puff pastry to 1/4" thickness.

Saute the beef. Dissolve the stock cube in the water, add to beef. Season to taste. Sprinkle with flour and cook till flour is browned and incorporated well. Adjust seasoning and coloring to taste.

Make pies by putting scoops of about cup on the base crust. Egg glaze around the filling and top with the puff pastry, using the egg glaze as a "glue". (try not to leave large air pockets).

Cut around the filling, creating individual pies. Brush the top with more egg glaze for color and bake at 350 F. till puffed and browned.

__________________
Angel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 06:26 PM   #7
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
Angel
I think the OP wanted a sweet mincemeat pie (Christmas treat) - rather than a beef mince pie
__________________
Ishbel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 06:38 PM   #8
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: USA,Colorado
Posts: 358
Vegetable shortening is usually used instead of suet over here - but it just doesn't give that ultra-light, fluffy, holey effect that we are used to with suet ('dumplings' over here are much smaller and more solid texture). You can buy a solid lump of beef suet at the butchers, then grate it yourself....but I've never fancied doing that, and I like to use the veggie suet anyway for health reasons.

That reminds me...I need to stock up on veggie suet when I go back to England for Christmas, our last batch of 24 boxes has lasted us for 3 years in the freezer :) I just hope customs doesn't mistake it for BEEF suet and confiscate it - the FDA are getting very strict, they 'raided' our local British store last Summer and confiscated all sorts of things, including 'Black Jacks' and 'Fruit Salad' chews would you believe, and yet you can still buy beef gravy powder ??????? strange....

Paint.
__________________
British ex-pat living in Colorado, USA
Paint is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2005, 06:46 PM   #9
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
I normally have a box of Atora suet in the pantry. BUT, my butcher (all organic meats) also sells his own grated suet by the half pound. I found it tasted too 'meaty' and revered to the bog-standard Atora!

Could it possibly be that the Bisto passes muster cos it has no 'beef' in it?!!!!

I hope you manage to import the vegetable suet into the USA. I don't use suet very often, but when I do use it in some of my recipes - there is no real alternative that gives the correct results - as you say, light and fluffy dumplings or 'dough baws' as we call them in Scotland!

And my Granny's recipe for jam roly-poly wouldn't be the same without the suet.
__________________
Ishbel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2005, 10:41 PM   #10
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: USA,Colorado
Posts: 358
I am feeling very amused that this got put in the 'Ethnic Foods' section.....sorry, I have a weird sense of humour

Paint.
__________________

__________________
British ex-pat living in Colorado, USA
Paint is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
None

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:58 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.