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mince pie

Festive Mince Pies

Also known as mincemeat tarts, mince pies are sweet little pies filled with mincemeat. In England, mincemeat is a mixture of dried fruits, aromatic warm spices, citrus, cognac and sugar, although recipes vary. You can either make your own or check for it in the international aisle of the supermarket if you are not in the UK. We are making homemade pastry for our mince pies. They are simple to assemble, and you can bake them in the oven until they are golden brown. Mince pies are a real staple in England in December and the closer Christmas gets, the more unusual it becomes not to serve these to every visitor!

The traditional way to serve them is to pop the lid up, add a spoonful of clotted cream (or the thickest cream you can get), then close them. Let people add their own cream just before eating. Mince pie ingredients can be traced back to the 13th century when returning European crusaders brought back Middle Eastern recipes with fruits and spices. Early mince pies contained meat, suet, fruits and spices. Suet is the hard white fat on cattle or sheep kidneys and loins.

Mince pies, which used to be known as ‘savoury Christmas pies’ were negatively associated with Catholic idolatry by Puritan authorities during the English Civil War, although they stayed popular in their original form (they were larger then, not individual) until the Victorian times, when they become smaller and sweeter, like they are today. You can buy them readymade from the supermarket or give our recipe a try and make your own. Continue reading

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Christine Szalay-Kudra

Hi, my name is Christine and I would like to welcome you to TeaTime Recipes. Tea has always been a favourite of mine and I adore the tradition of serving this wonderful beverage with all kinds of little snacks both sweet and savoury. Read More