Three Mine PiesCredit: eGDC Ltd

Here are three different recipes for mince pies to make for Christmas. With the exception of the icing topped mince pies, these can be eaten either hot or cold. Once cooked, they can be warmed up again in a microwave. Once made, keep the mince pies in a resealable container.

Full Lid Mince Pies (Makes Six)

Ingredients

Mincemeat (sweet), approximately 240g

Shortcrust pastry, approximately 225g

Plain flour

Water

Icing sugar (optional, for decoration)

Brandy (optional)

Mince Pie IngredientsCredit: eGDC LtdUtensils

Pastry mat

Rolling pin

Cookie cutters, round with fluted edges, one 11 cm wide and one 8.5 cm wide approximately

Muffin tin

Pastry brush

Skewer

Pallet knife

Cooling tray

Sieve (optional)

Mince Pie Cooking UtensilsCredit: eGDC LtdCooking Instructions

Shortcrust pastry can be made from scratch, but it is easier to buy the premade pastry which is available in sheets.

1. Brandy can be added to the mincemeat if desired. If brandy is added, empty the mincemeat out of the jar into a bowl and add one dessert spoon of brandy (or less) for every approximately 400g of mincemeat. Leave to soak for a few minutes and then stir well.

2. Preheat the oven to 200 C, Gas Mark 6 (lower for fan assisted ovens).

3. Roll out the shortcrust pastry on the pastry mat with your rolling pin, even if it already came in sheets, using the plain flour to prevent it from sticking to your rolling pin. Shortcrust pastry becomes thicker when cooked, so even if it looks quite thin when taken from the packet, roll it until it's about 1 to 2 mm in thickness, otherwise it can become to thick when cooked.

4. Cut six circles from the rolled pastry using the larger of the two cookie cutters, then place these into the muffin tin. These want to come to the top of the tin, or slightly over as the pastry can also shrink as it gets thicker during cooking, so use a bigger cookie cutter than the one stated if needed. The muffin tray does not need greasing, as there is enough butter in the pastry already.

Mine Pie BaseCredit: eGDC LtdIt probably won't be possible to cut out all the required circles of both sizes from the pastry, so when no more can be cut from the sheet, stack the pastry offcuts on top of each other and roll out again, then cut out more circles as required.Rerolling the PastryCredit: eGDC Ltd
5. Once all the pastry circles have been added to the muffin tray, add the mincemeat. Fill each pastry case to about 2/3 of the way to the lid (a bit more than one dessert spoon), taking care to not get it on the edges of the pastry.Adding the MincemeatCredit: eGDC Ltd
6. Cut another six circles from the pastry using the smaller cookie cutter, rerolling the pastry as needed. These circles should be big enough to cover the top of the cases, so again alter the size of the cutter used if needed.

7. Brush the edge of each pastry case with water using the pastry brush (milk can also be used) and add the lid to each one.
8. Stick a skewer through the centre of each lid and waggle it around slightly to make a hole for hot gasses to escape.
9. Place the tray in the pre-heated oven for approximately 25 minutes, checking during cooking to ensure they don't burn.

10. Once cooled enough, remove the mince pies from the muffin tray, using the pallet knife if needed. Stand them on the cooling tray to cool further, unless eating them immediately.

11. Dust the mince pies with icing sugar using a sieve if desired.

Finished Full Lidded Mince PieCredit: eGDC LtdAdding the LidCredit: eGDC Ltd

Star Lid Mince Pies (Makes Six)

Ingredients

Mincemeat (sweet), approximately 240g

Shortcrust pastry, approximately 180g

Plain flour

Water

Icing sugar (optional, for decoration)

Brandy (optional)

Utensils

Pastry mat

Rolling pin

Cookie cutter, round with fluted edges, approximately 11 cm wide

Cookie cutter, star shaped, approximately 6 cm wide

Muffin tin

Pastry brush

Pallet knife

Cooling tray

Sieve (optional)

Cooking Instructions

Making these is very similar to making the full covered mince pies. First, follow steps 1 to 5 from the full lid mince pie recipe.

6. Cut six stars from the pastry using the star shaped cookie cutter, rerolling the pastry as needed. These stars should be big enough to just reach the edges of the cases, so again alter the size of the cutter used if needed.7. Brush the points of each star with water using the pastry brush. Again, milk can be used instead. Add each star to the top of the cases.8. Place the tray in the pre-heated oven for approximately 20 minutes, checking during cooking to ensure they don't burn.

9. Once cooled enough, remove the mince pies from the muffin tray, using the pallet knife if needed. Stand them on the cooling tray to cool further, unless eating them immediately.

10. Dust the mince pies with icing sugar using a sieve if desired.

Finished Star Lidded Mince PieCredit: eGDC LtdStar LidCredit: eGDC Ltd

Iced Mince Pies (Makes Six)

Ingredients

Mincemeat (sweet), approximately 180g

Shortcrust pastry, approximately 120g

Plain flour

Royal icing sugar, approximately 120g

Brandy (optional)

Water, approximately 20 ml

Six Christmas sugar decorations (optional)

Utensils

Pastry mat

Rolling pin

Muffin tin

Cookie cutter, round with fluted edges, approximately 11 cm wide

Pallet knife

Cooling tray

Bowl

Food mixer or wooden spoon

Icing Bag (optional)

Cooking Instructions

Again, the initial steps are identical to those from the first recipe, so follow steps 1 to 4 from the full lid mince pie recipe.

5. Once all the pastry circles have been added to the muffin tray, add the mincemeat. Fill each pastry case to about 1/2 of the way to the lid (about one dessert spoon), taking care to not get it on the edges of the pastry. Slightly less mincemeat is used in this recipe to leave room for the icing.

6. Place the tray in the pre-heated oven for approximately 15 minutes, checking during cooking to ensure they don't burn.

7. Once cooled enough, remove the mince pies from the muffin tray, using the pallet knife if needed. Stand them on the cooling tray to cool fully.

8. Add the 20 ml of water to a bowl, then add the 120g of royal icing sugar to the water. Beat using a food mixer for about 5 minutes until the icing comes to soft peaks. A wooden spoon can also be used, although this will take longer. If the icing is too stiff, beat in some water a few drops at a time to make it softer; if it is too runny, beat in more icing sugar 1one teaspoon at a time until it thickens (check the packet of icing sugar to see if the proportions or instructions vary).9. After the mince pies have cooled fully, add the icing to the top. This can be done using an icing bag, or using a spoon. Smooth down the icing if needed.10. A Christmas themed sugar cake decoration can be added to the top of the mince pies if wanted. Add these when the icing becomes tacky.

Decorated Iced Mince PieCredit: eGDC LtdMixed Royal IcingCredit: eGDC Ltd