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Vegetarian Mincemeat Recipe


mossie

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Following requests on a thread about mincemeat on the shopping forum, I am posting my favourite suet free recipe here.

To make 2 Ib mincemeat:

1Ib mixed dried fruit

4ozs melted butter (I always use butter, not margarine)

4ozs cooking apples - peeled and grated (weight when prepared)

4ozs brown sugar

2-4 ozs blanched chopped almonds

4ozs glace cherries

4ozs chopped candied peel

1 teaspoon grated lemon rind

1 teaspoon grated orange rind

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon mixed spice

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 to 1/2  teaspoon grated nutmeg

4 tablespoons Cointreau

Method:  Mix the ingredients thoroughly.  Put in clean, dry jars (press firmly into place to avoid having big air bubbles in the jar) and seal firmly  (I wash them, allow them to dry, and then put into hot oven for five minutes to steralise them).  Keep in a cool, dry place.  Do not reduce the quantities of sugar, butter or alcohol if you wish the mincemeat to keep well.

Also, as with any recipe, if you use the best ingredients, you get the best end result.  Don't skim on stuff too.  I often put a few extra almonds in, a few extra cherries and a good slosh of Cointreau.  After all, it is only xmas once a year!!!!  I hope you like the recipe.

EDIT:

I HAVE JUST REALISED, I FORGOT ONE FINAL ELEMENT IN THE RECIPE I POSTED

AT THE START (OOPS).  I PUT THE MIXTURE INTO THE FOOD PROCESSOR FOR A

QUICK WHIZZ AT THE END.  YOU CAN JUST POT UP THE WHOLE FRUIT, BUT I

LIKE THE TEXTURE OF THE LIGHTLY PROCESSED MIXTURE.  SOOOOOO SORRY!!!!

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Yes you can get veggie suet but the best stuff (Broadlands) is no longer available as they went bust.  I have really struggled getting decent suet since (which I use in my xmas puds).  I am very reluctant to use the Atora Light stuff which you can get pretty easily.  Anything 'fat reduced' in my experience is usually pretty disgusting (and when you look at the ingredients, yuck, yuck, yuck).  I don't want to spend all that time (and money) on good ingredients, for my lovely puddings to be spoiled by the suet.  I am toying with the idea of using grated butter for my puds now.  Does anyone have any ideas about this, ie whether it would work, or any other (tasty) solutions?????  I have found a place that does gluten free stuff and they do suet which a friend is investigating for me at the moment but at present I am a bit stuck.
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Mossie

Just want to say thank you so much for the recipe.  I'm really looking forward to trying it. 

I have to agree about "light" anything; yohurts, crisps, "spread", they all taste equally disgusting to me; in fact, as bad as low alcohol beers, wines, etc.

As for reduced fat crossants, you want to steer well clear of those.

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So glad you found the recipe.  I tried e-mailing you earlier to let you know I had put it on, but it was returned to me.  Anyway, I hope you enjoy it.  Occasionally now I am offered a shop bought mince pie which I usually eat out of politeness.  I am always so struck by how sweet and gloopy they taste.  They almost make my teeth ache.  They ought to be advetised as 'sweet, sticky, mince-meat like substance' to be correctly labelled!!!!!  I know some people don't like to cook, but this recipe is so easy and it is on a different planet to the shop bought stuff.  Just once a year, it can't be that difficult.  Also makes very nice gift for a foody type.
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I agree mossie - once you've tasted homemade mincemeat you'll never buy the commercial stuff again.  I make several batches a year as its great for making eccles cakes.  I use frozen puff pastry and preserving sugar for the tops (as it has very large grains) so once you have the mincemeat in the cupbard the cakes can be made very easily.  (Good for using left over trimmings of puff pastry.)

On the subject of low fat recipes, I have a great one for fat free Christmas pudding.  I made it the first time for my mum (as she has to have a fat free diet) but everyone liked it so much that I make this one now in preference to the traditional one.  (It's very moist and dark but not as heavy as 'normal' pudding.)  If anyone wants the recipe, shout and I post it.

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Yes, that should be about right for a couple of dozen mince pies.  One other tip, put plenty into each pie.  As they aren't full of all the rubbish that you get in shop bought mincemeat, they don't overflow and go sticky all over the baking tins.  Also, to make them extra nice, I either use an almond pastry (which admittedly is rather soft and a bit tricky to roll out but very nice) or I use ordinary pastry and pipe viennese mixture onto the top.  Really scrummy.  I have also seen other variations you can do to ring the changes to mince pies, ie put a dollop of custard under the lid of the pastry or (which sounds lovely but a bit rich) put in a dollop of mascarpone mixed with some icing sugar and some lemon rind under the lid.  Anyway, I hope you enjoy the recipe.
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Don't panic.  Pastry is very easy.  The way to good pastry is to make sure everything is cold, including your hands if possible, also try to roll it on a cold surface, ie a glass worktop saver, a piece of marble or steel worktops if you have them.  Let it rest in the fridge for at least half an hour after making it, and handle it as little as possible.  Alternatively, I am told there are some very good ready-to-roll pastries in the shops.  If you buy pastry from a shop, try to get an all butter recipe.  Good luck!
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[quote user="londoneye"] I was just going to leave it out actually, because I don't really like it anyway.   Can't make that much difference can it ?[/quote]

*GASP*  *HORROR*   It will make all the difference.  Seriously.... if you're prepared to risk your families Yuletide joy by missing out the candied peel ....

 

Well, acutally, it probably won't make all that difference at all.  Make it up with extra cherries and nuts.  ON the subject of glace cherries .... .have you SEEN the PRICE of them!!!  I can get four packs in UK for the price of one here... and guess where they are imported from .... yes, France!!

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As to missing out the candied peel, it sort of depends on whether you like the citrussy elements of the mincemeat.  I always buy whole pieces of peel and chop those up.  I really don't like the stuff you get in the little tubs in the supermarket, they look like chopped plastic to me.  Although I appreciate that it is not all that easy to get the whole pieces here.  I have however seen them for sale in street markets, so it is a case of looking around really.  However, if you don't like them, then don't use them but I think it will change the taste.  I don't like dates and so don't put them into my xmas pud, I just make up the amouts with other fruits and nuts that I do like.

I HAVE JUST REALISED, I FORGOT ONE FINAL ELEMENT IN THE RECIPE I POSTED AT THE START (OOPS).  I PUT THE MIXTURE INTO THE FOOD PROCESSOR FOR A QUICK WHIZZ AT THE END.  YOU CAN JUST POT UP THE WHOLE FRUIT, BUT I LIKE THE TEXTURE OF THE LIGHTLY PROCESSED MIXTURE.  SOOOOOO SORRY!!!!

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[quote user="mossie"]

As to missing out the candied peel, it sort of depends on whether you like the citrussy elements of the mincemeat.  I always buy whole pieces of peel and chop those up.  I really don't like the stuff you get in the little tubs in the supermarket, they look like chopped plastic to me.  Although I appreciate that it is not all that easy to get the whole pieces here.  I have however seen them for sale in street markets, so it is a case of looking around really.  However, if you don't like them, then don't use them but I think it will change the taste.  I don't like dates and so don't put them into my xmas pud, I just make up the amouts with other fruits and nuts that I do like.

I HAVE JUST REALISED, I FORGOT ONE FINAL ELEMENT IN THE RECIPE I POSTED AT THE START (OOPS).  I PUT THE MIXTURE INTO THE FOOD PROCESSOR FOR A QUICK WHIZZ AT THE END.  YOU CAN JUST POT UP THE WHOLE FRUIT, BUT I LIKE THE TEXTURE OF THE LIGHTLY PROCESSED MIXTURE.  SOOOOOO SORRY!!!!

[/quote]

Mossie, I have edited your recipe to include the above...
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I don't like candied peel so have never put it in.  Likewise I can't eat nuts so I never include those either - but I do add to the standard currants/sultanas/raisins whatever other dried fruits etc are to hand or that I fancy.  Over the years I have used variously, dried figs, apricots, pears, cranberries, blueberries etc.  The recipe I use includes the grated peel and juice of lemons and oranges so it does have a citrussy taste even without the candied peel.

I've never put mine in the food processor though - doesn't it make the texture too smooth?

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Edit:  Thank you so much for editing my recipe.

Scooby:  As to putting it in the food processor, I only give it a bit of a light whizz but it is completely up to personal taste.  I find if I whizz it a bit, it packs down better into the jars and I can get more into the pies!!!!!  I like the idea of all the other fruits you use too.  I put candied papaya and pineapple into my xmas pud (although don't know where I am going to get that this year)  Perhaps I'll swop them for the blueberries.

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[quote user="Jonzjob"]

Now if you are talking 'proper mince pies', where is the minced lamb???[8-)]

[/quote]

Probably only to be found in Pezenas.

As to trying to find packet suet - don't bother. Just ask your local butcher for some fresh (you may get it for free if you're lucky).

You'll not want the packet again!

Sorry veggies!

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Soft dark brown sugar is really difficult to get, I saw some soft 'blond' sugar in Auchan though.  I found some of the dark variety a couple of years ago but none since.  I have substituted with cassonade: it's fine but you don't get the rich colour and flavour fom the dark brown sugar.

I've bought all my ingredients now, including some semi-dried cranberries  in place of some of the raisins.  Will get preparing it later.

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Ditto I've bought all my stuff.    And I'm sure they had candied peel in Intermarche - well I'm not entirely sure because I don't really know what it looks like, but I think it was it - didn't buy it, because I was still in shock at the price of the glace cherries (as another poster has mentioned).    No idea how many I need for recipe, but can't afford more than one carton at that price !!

Bizzarely, in Intermarche, there is a section for dried fruit and nuts (next to fresh fruit) where I carefully collected all of my dried fruit for recipe.   Then, when searching for brown sugar (found, no problem), next to it there is another section of  dried fruit, and nuts at half the price !!   So, yes, it was I who had dumped all the mega expensive stuff in with the cheap stuff if anyone is wondering, when I swapped them over.   The nerve !  (I mean the nerve of them to sell the same stuff but at different prices, in different sections, albeit some will think the nerve of her to dump all her stuff!).

Happy mince pie making everyone.   Shall be trying this for first time at weekend!

 

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8 oz plain flour

pinch salt

4 oz butter

1 oz castor sugar

1 egg yolk

Cold water

 

Blend together flour salt and butter with fingertips till like breadcrumbs

Add sugar

Stir in egg with a knife and then add cold water till it all comes together

Chill in the fridge for 30 mins

Makes 12 pies

  Bake for 18 - 20 mins

You can sprinkle pies with sugar before putting in the oven but i didn`t. I sprinkled with icing sugar after they were cooked.

 

Enjoy and then show us your photo  [:D]

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