I just love the wonderful aroma of baking around Christmas and these fruit mince pies really add to that deliciousness and festive feeling.
Seriously here in South Africa, you know that the festive season is here when the stores start to display trays of delicious fruit mince pies. The fruit mince is a tangy, sweet and sour mix of apples, currants, mixed peel and orange and it pairs perfectly with a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream. I love to bake my own mince pies, the smell of the delicious fruit baking in this melt in your mouth shortcrust pastry is absolutely warming and divine.
These fruit mince pies are made with delicious shortcrust pastry and filled with traditional spiced fruit mincemeat, and dusted with sugar. These pies are really simple and quick to prepare and quickly eaten up as well 😉 I usually use the jar of fruit mince which you get in stores. Homemade fruitmince is great, but that is a recipe for another day. In fact all that’s done here is the pastry, which takes about 5 minutes to prepare and 10 minutes to chill. I usually chill the pastry in the freezer instead of the fridge, for about 10 minutes. I feel that it firms up the pastry a bit more and is easier to handle.
MAKING THE FRUIT MINCE PIES IS EASY
Fruit mince pies are baked in a shallow tart pan or a deep muffin pan, if you prefer. After the pastry has chilled ,Roll it out to about 4mm thick and cut out the bases for each pie. I used a cookie cutter to cut out the circular bases so that they were the perfect size to fit into the tin but use of whatever you have to get the right size to fit into your pan.
Line the tart or muffin tin with the cut off bases. Place about a teaspoon of fruit mince into each.
Re roll the pastry and cut out covers, cutting out decorative stars if you prefer as well. Use this to form a lid on the pie pressing on the edges to seal.
Brush the tops with a little milk and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. After they have cooled, dust with powdered or castor sugar
See how pretty it looks dusted with powdered sugar.
These absolutely delicious little pastries taste so amazing just warm out of the oven, it almost never lasts for dessert, but when it does, it is enjoyed with a scoop of vanilla icecream for the boys, but just with a cup of coffee for me.
But however you choose to serve fruit mince pies, it is sure to be loved and enjoyed.
- 1 x 454g jar fruit mince
- 125 g margarine
- 125 ml castor sugar
- 60 ml buttermilk or 5 ml lemon juice mixed into ¼ cup of milk
- 500 ml cake flour / all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 ml salt
Start by making the pastry by creaming the sugar and margarine.
Add the buttermilk and beat well until light and creamy.
Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt.
Knead lightly to form a soft dough. Place in the fridge or freezer for about 10 minutes.
Heat the oven 160°C / 325°F
Roll out the pastry to 3cm thick. Using a round cutter , cut out and place them into greased or sprayed tart or muffin pans
Put 1 tsp fruit mince mixture into each.
Re-roll out the pastry to cut out covers and press them on top to seal.
Brush tops with milk.
Bake mince pies for 10-15 mins until golden brown.
Remove from tray and place on cooling rack.
Dust with sifted powdered sugar.
Store for up to 3 days in an airtight container.