Mince Pies with Orange Pastry
I am reliably informed that the recipe for this exceptional orange pastry originates from Joceline Dimbleby.
The rich orange pastry, subtle and fragrantly alluring, makes these little mince pies so special. Home-made Christmas mincemeat makes these the perfect mince pie; the only downside is they are so moreish, you may end up making several batches! I was given the recipe on a scrap of paper about 20 years ago from a very dear friend, and I have shared it with so many others over the years. In fact, all my good friends now use this recipe, so I would like to share it now with Silversurfers….
Makes about 24 regular size mince pies
For the pastry:
500g strong plain white flour
175g icing or caster sugar
the finely grated rind and juice of 1 large orange
For the filling:
2 jars of either home-made Mincemeat (click here for the recipe)
or shop bought mincemeat of your choice
What to do:
Make the pastry first. Sift the flour and sugar into a mixing bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces, stir these into the flour and rub lightly with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the orange rind. Using a knife, stir in the orange juice until the dough just begins to stick together. Gather up the dough into a ball, wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes before using.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC/gas 6/fan 180ºC
You can either use a small muffin tin to make miniature pies, or a regular 12 or 24 hole pie tin. The choice is yours.
Using a pastry cutter, cut out sufficient circle to fill your tins, pop the bases in the tin, and top with a teaspoon full of mincemeat. Use the remaining pastry to make tops for the pies; you can use a star-shaped cutter if you would like to or make tops circular with a cutter to fit on top of the filled cases. If using circles, moisten the edges with water or milk, to help seal the pies. (see the tip below)
Brush the tops of the pies with a little milk and bake in the centre of the oven for 10-15 minutes until light golden-brown. Let the pies cool down before easing them from the tins gently with a round-bladed knife. Serve warm (they can be reheated), or at room temperature. Before serving, sprinkle with caster or icing sugar.
TIP: The pies can be frozen before the final cooking stage, in the tin. When frozen you can turn them out, put in a freezer bag, and reuse the tin. Then when required, pop the frozen pies back in the tin, and cook as per the instructions above.
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