This weekend I decided to channel my inner Darina Allen (I wish) and start making all my sauces and preserves for Christmas. I know what you’re probably thinking (“get a hobby”), but anyway, that’s what I did! I decided to make the mincemeat now for the mincepies I’ll make over Christmas, and made four jars of really delicious mincemeat. I absolutely love mincepies, so I was quite happy to make this and give the usual Christmas recipe a bit of a twist.
This is really easy, it takes time (the time it takes to sit overnight and the cooking time) but apart from that the effort is minimal, just chuck some ingredients in a bowl and mix.
I decided to cut back on the raisins, sultanas etc in my mincemeat recipe and put in a nice big portion of dried cranberries and chopped dried prunes, which gave a delicious sweet taste and is different from the traditional stuff. It also gave a lovely bit of colour. I also threw in a nice big portion of chopped walnuts and almonds, mainly because I love them and tend to put them in most of my recipes but also because they give this recipe a nice little bite.
I hope you enjoy, this is seriously delicious if I do say so myself! I ate a good few spoons of it when it finally came out of the oven!
300g mixed fruit and peel (mix of sultanas, raisins, currents and candied peel. I bought a bag of this mix from Shamrock rather than buying them all individually)
100g dried cranberries
150g chopped prunes
300g chopped apples (I used Cox’s)
60g finely chopped walnuts
60g finely chopped almonds
180g soft dark brown soft sugar
zest and juice of one large orange
zest and juice of one lemon
1 tsp cinnamon
3 tsp all spice/ mixed spice
1/2 nutmeg grated
125g butter (do not use margarine, it will ruin the flavour)
4 tbsp brandy (I used Hennessy’s)
1. Mix all ingredients together in a pot except for the brandy. Let it sit in the fridge overnight, this lets the flavours mingle.
2. Place in a an oven at 120C for 3 hours.
3. Take out of oven when done and when it has cooled add the brandy.
4. Put into clean, sterilised jars.
5. Enjoy in mincepies, little buns, pastries, mince slices etc!