It really wouldn’t be Christmas without being offered a mince pie, would it? In this recipe Jamie Oliver has done a bit of reinventing the classic mince pie, by using a combination of puff and filo pastry, both of which you can buy ready-made in the shops for extra convenience.
100 g good-quality mince meat (see recipe below if you wish to make your own)
25 g dried cranberries or blueberries, chopped
zest of 2 clementines
1 splash sherry or brandy
flour, to dust
250 g puff pastry
1 pack filo pastry
50 g butter, melted
1 free-range egg, beaten
50 g flaked almonds
icing sugar, to dust
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400ºF/gas 6. Scoop the mincemeat into a mixing bowl and mix in the dried berries, the clementine zest and the sherry or brandy.
Dust a clean work surface with flour and roll out the puff pastry into a big rectangle about 20cm x 40cm. Thinly spread the mincemeat over the pastry, leaving a 1cm gap around the edges. Tightly roll up the pastry, lengthways, like a Swiss roll, place it on a floured tray, and pop in the fridge to firm up.
Take two cupcake trays (for 12 cupcakes each) and butter each one lightly with the melted butter. Place one layer of filo pastry over the tray (you may need more than one sheet to cover each tray depending on the size of the sheets) and ease the pastry into each hole. Brush with the melted butter, then cover with a second layer of filo pastry. Brush with butter again.
Take the puff pastry roll out of the fridge and, with a sharp knife, cut it into 24 slices. Place each slice, flat-side down, into a filo-lined hole. Brush with the egg and sprinkle a few flaked almonds on top of each little pie, then pop both trays in the oven for about 25 minutes, until cooked and golden brown.
Leave to cool, then crack the individual pies out of the trays. Dust with a little icing sugar before serving.
PS You can freeze the cooked, cooled mince pies in their trays (just wrap the lot in cling film) or in a plastic container. Just reheat them in a hot oven straight from the freezer.
375g box of Raisins
350g box of Currants
500g box of Sultanas
110g packet of Blanched Almonds, finely chopped
2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and grated
1 1/2 cups Brown Sugar
150g Unsalted Butter, melted
3/4 cup Brandy or rum
1/2 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground Cloves or Allspice
1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
Finely grated zest of 2 oranges, and their juice (approx 300ml)
Mix everything together and store in the fridge for at least a week before using. Stirring every other day.