Mincemeat pie is one of the best tasting desserts associated with the Christmas season as far as I am concerned. One of my fondest memories of mincemeat pies comes from one of my neighbors who was English and made tiny mince pies each Christmas season. We would sit at her kitchen table with a cup of tea and she would put out a little tray of these sweet goodies.
Today most people who make mincemeat, just use a combination of apples, raisins or sultanas and don’t use meat at all. Nuts, dates, pears and other lovely ingredients can be added. Years ago mincemeat was a recipe of fruits, meat (deer is thought to be the first), suet, sugar and some form of alcohol that was left to age. It was a way of preserving meat and making it taste good. It was then used as an ingredient
I don’t make the traditional little mince pies that most English cooks make. Instead I make enough mince to make a large deep dish pie. This is an easy recipe to multiply for making either more pies, or canning for future use.
Mince (No Meat) Pie
- 1 large Golden Delicious apple (or similar sweet, flavorful apple)
- 1 large Granny Smith apple (or similar tart, flavorful apple)
- 1 cup golden raisins (sultanas or dark raisins can be used or a combination)
- 1 Tbsp. dark rum (for plumping)
- zest of 1/2 orange
- juice of 1/2 orange
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
- 4 or more Tbsp. dark rum
- 1 jar of Crosse and Blackwell Mincemeat
- Optional ingredients include chopped candied orange peel, or other dried fruit
Peel and dice apples to about the same size as the raisins. Add the lemon juice and toss. Plump the raisins with the 1 Tbsp. of rum. (I microwave covered for 10 seconds). Combine diced apples, plumped raisins, zest of the orange and juice, brown sugar and dark rum.
Put this mixture into a sealed container and let sit at room temperature for at least 4 days or more. Turn or shake the mixture every day. When you mince is to your liking add the jarred mincemeat. Mix well and let sit at least 2 more days. The longer your fruit mixture ages the better the taste will be.
Take your favorite pie crust recipe and roll out two crusts. Place one crust in the bottom of a large deep dish pie plate, fill with mincemeat, and top with the final crust. Make slits to release steam and bake until crusts are nicely browned and juices are bubbling through.
I do hope you will try the recipe for Mincemeat (no meat) pie. The wonderful sweet tart flavor of tart apples and sweet raisins is so good. This recipe can easily be adapted to your own tastes. Make as many or as few as you want…but I know if you serve this fruit pie to your friends to will get compliments on the dessert.