Tuesday 21 December 2010

Mincemeat and Christmas biscuits


225g soft dark sugar
200ml apple or orange juice
1kg grated cooking apples
225g currants
225g raisins
50g chopped nuts - walnuts, almonds
rind and juice of a lemon
scant teaspoon each of allspice and

This recipe contains no fat, ideal for slimmers and vegetarians, (if you forget about the pastry!) 

Melt the sugar in the apple juice and add all the other ingredients once the sugar has dissolved.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes until you have a soft mash. Put in sterilised jars while hot. I pour in a little brandy at this stage. The mincemeat will keep for a couple of months.

Julpepparkakor (Christmas gingersnaps) from Maja's Swedish cookbook.

6oz light brown sugar
2oz treacle
200g water
5oz margarine
1lb flour
1/2 tablespoon each of cinnamon, ginger and bicarbonate of soda.

Boil together the sugar, treacle and water. Add the margarine to melt and then set aside to cool. Stir in the dry ingredients and work the dough until it is smooth.
Roll very thinly and cut out.

Bake for about 8 minutes at 175c gas mark 3.

I hope that your icing skills are a whole lot better than mine. This recipe makes 150 or more biscuits, so there is plenty of  opportunity to improve! 
 Threaded with a ribbon the biscuits can be hung on the Christmas tree.


  1. Hey, where's the suet?

    I was at the grocery store in the International Food section last night and they had an English section where they had a bottle of mincement. I haven't had it in years and it takes me back to my childhood. It seemed weird that they had an English section because I would bet you you don't have an American section in your grocery store, do you?

    They also had a can of Heinz curry beans. Is that English fare?

  2. Your recipe makes me crave my mother's mincement cookies. Yummy! Merry Christmas!

  3. Dear Steve, that's just the point, NO suet. Most of the big British stores seem to be an American section these days, only the small independent shops stock a good range of traditional English foodstuffs.
    Heinz is absolutely American but I suppose the addition of curry comes from the English love of Indian spices dating from the time of the Raj!
    Mincemeat pies used to contain meat up until the Victorian era. I forgot to mention that when I've filled my jars I pour a bit of brandy onto the mixture - I assure you that you will not miss the suet!

    Dear Bonnie, just a few more days, then the feasting begins!