Easy Mince Pies
1. Preheat oven to 220?C, gas mark 7, 425?F. Lightly grease a large baking tray with butter.
2. Unroll the packet of pastry, leaving it on the cellophane, then just cut out 24 x 2 inch (5 cm) discs and arrange them on the baking tray.
3. Next, using the 1½ in (4 cm) cutter, press this into the centre of each disc, making an incision to just three-quarters of the way into the pastry. Be careful not to go right through.
4. Now brush the edge of each disc with a little milk then pile about a teaspoonful of mincemeat into the centre of each disc.
5. Arrange 3 almonds on half the mince pies and 3 cranberries on the rest, then dust the nuts and cranberries with a little caster sugar.
6. Bake the mince pies on a high shelf of the oven for 10-12 minutes or
till golden, then remove them to a wire cooling tray.
7. Serve warm, dusted with sifted icing sugar.
Note: You can bake the pies in advance and freeze them. To freeze, allow
the pies to cool then transfer to a plastic freezer box with baking parchment between each layer. To re-heat, cook from frozen in an oven pre-heated to gas mark 7, 425°F (220°C) for 4-5 minutes. Then dust with icing sugar.
Makes two dozen pies
300g ready-made luxury mincemeat
1x 375g package of ready rolled puff pastry
A little milk
36 whole blanched almonds
36 fresh cranberries
Golden caster sugar
1½" (4cm) and 2" (5cm) round cutters
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