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Shelli's Easy Peasy Mince Pies

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Let's be honest, there are very few Mince Pies that can beat Woolies' selection. But i have to say that there is simply no substitute for homemade. Some years, I have made my own fruit mince, and it really is rather fabulous. But this year I am using the ready-made version and have to say that it is just as good. I just add a little more whiskey….

Pastry (Pate Sucre)

175g butter
3 cups cake flour
pinch of salt
75g caster sugar
2 egg yolks
a few drops of vanilla essence

  • Allow the butter to stand at room temperature to become fairly soft. So not let it oil in any way.
  • Sift the flour or salt onto a large board or working surface. Make a well in the centre. Put the butter in, as well as sugar, egg yolks and vanilla essence.
  • Mix with your fingertips.
  • Gradually work the flour into the flour with your fingertips. Do not try to make the butter mixture absorb too much flour at one time. Start with the flour around the well and once this is absorbed, work in more.
  • Continue like this until all the flour has been absorbed. The mixture will probably be a little dry and crumbly in which case work in a little ice cold ice water to give a fairly firm rolling consistency.
  • Wrap in plastic wrap and allow to chill for 30 mins to an hour in the fridge.
  • Roll out thinly on a floured board.
  • Line patty tins with the pastry, spoon in some mincemeat then cover with pastry rounds (smaller than those lining the base).
  • Seal the edges.
  • Make two slits in the pastry lids (or prick lightly with a fork) then bake in a pre-heated 190 degree oven for 20 minutes.
  • Dust with icing sugar and serve hot.
  • Can be frozen, unbaked. Defrost before using.
  • Makes 18.

Trust me, you will never look back! These can also be broken up (once cooked and cooled) and mixed into softened vanilla ice-cream. Refreeze and serve as an alternative to Christmas Pudding!

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