One of the traditional Christmas food items in England is the mince pie. I had neither heard of it nor tasted it before I came to live in this country. At first, the ultra-sweetness of the mince meat made me ill, but now I love it. It has become part of our family's little tradition to make our own mince pies each Christmas, especially since Tiger loves it too.
At first I thought that mince meat is some kind of sweetened meat, because of its rather misleading name. However, it turns out to be a mixture of dried fruit, nuts, and brandy. Commercial mince meat is found on the shelves of supermarkets but we prefer to make our own so that we can decide on the types of mixture we like. More importantly, our homemade mince meat is alcohol-and-sugar-free.
The ingredients in this year's mince meat are:
- 1 large apple - peeled, cored and grated
- 1 banana - peeled and finely chopped
- 60g (1/3 cup) sultanas
- 45g (1/4 cup) mixture of dried apricot, figs and dates - finely chopped
- 60g (1/3 cup) currants
- 60g (1/3 cup) hazelnuts - finely chopped
- 90g clear honey
- 1 teaspoon mixed spice
- 30g butter - melted
- 2 tablespoons apple juice
Step 1: Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
Step 2: Pour the mixture into a clean jar, cover and refrigerate for at least 24 hours before use.
We will be making mince pies at some point next week so our jar of mince meat would have ample time to 'mature' in the fridge. At least that's the idea if you were using brandy instead of apple juice.
This post is linked up to:
1) Hip Homeschool Hop - 12/11/12
2) Kids in the Kitchen - Link up 44
3) All Year Round Blog Carnival: Winter