Crumble Topped Mince Pies

Saturday 9 December 2017

We love mince pies in this house!  Every year I like to make my traditional ones and I am always keen to try a new version!  
In  my opinion you can never have too many mince pies!

This version is one I found on the Waitrose recipe page.  I miss shopping at Waitrose . . .  I shopped there all the time when we lived down South.  
We do have a beautiful big new one in Chester now, but it is all the way to the other side of Chester and so we have never been.

These tasty little tarts are absolutely packed with flavour.  They have a lovely crisp pastry base  . . . I used my homemade brandied mincemeat
But you can use any kind of mincemeat that you have to hand.  All the jarred ones work well. Just pick your favourite kind!

The crumble topping has lots of flavour in it from mixed spice. Mixed spice is a type of baking spice here in the UK. A combination of the warm baking spices. 
You can easily make your own. Combine 1 TBS ground cinnamon, 1 tsp each of ground coriander and nutmeg, 1/2 tsp of ground ginger, 1/4 tsp each of ground cloves and all spice. Mix well and store in an airtight container out of the light for up to 6 months.

They are beautiful served warm from the oven. You can enjoy them with a hot drink of herbal tea, or regular tea.  
 I love to enjoy them with a glass of cold milk. A small scoop of icecream is also nice on a warm one of these.

That buttery crumble topping is very moreish. I doubled the quantities because I thought we would enjoy even more of it.
I was right, we did.  We really, really did.

They look almost lacy with the crumbles on top and a light dusting of icing sugar.  A dusting of icing sugar always dresses most things up.
Especially at Christmas time.

I couldn't resist getting out my cupcake pedestal  to show them off  . . .

And my super big silver dragees that I got at M&S  . . .  kind of like jewelry . . .  coz these mince pies are all dressed up to go to the Christmas ball . . .

They were very, very, VERY nice, if I don't say so myself.  And yes  . . .  I know I just did.  😉 

But who can blame me. I like to call a spade a spade, and these are phenomenal! Yummy!

*Crumble Topped Mince Pies*
Makes 2 dozen 
A festive favourite with a light crunchy spiced orange flavoured crumble on top! 

For the pies
225g plain flour, plus extra for rolling (1 1/2 cups plus 2 TBS)
50g ground almonds (9 1/2 TBS) (almond meal)
50g caster sugar (1/4 cup)
125g unsalted butter, diced (1/2 cup)
1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
1 large free range egg yolk
1 TBS water
800g prepared mincemeat (about 1 3/4 pound, or 28 ounces) 

For the crumble topping
75g plain flour (1/2 cup plus 1 tsp)
6 TBS demerara sugar (turbinado)
60g unsalted butter, cut into bits(1/4 cup)
the grated zest of one orange
1 tsp mixed spice (see recipe in side bar)
(I like to double the topping) 

You will also need
Icing sugar to dust

Measure the flour, almonds, sugar, butter and vanilla seeds into the bowl of a food processor.  Blitz to make crumbs.  Add the egg yolk, and 1 TBS of cold water  Pulse until it starts to clump together, adding a drop more water if need be.  Tip onto  lightly floured worktop and knead lightly until smooth.  Press into a flat disc, cover with cling film and refrigerate for about half an hour.

Without washing the food processor add the flour, sugar, butter,  orange zest and mixed spice.  Pulse until until you get a chunky crumble.

Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6.  Have ready two 12 hole tart tins.  Place a small strip of baking paper into each hole of the tin to make removal of the tarts easy.

Roll the chilled pastry out  to 1/4 inch thickness. Stamp out 24 ( 3 to 3 1/2 inch) rounds with a sharp round cutter.  Reroll any trimmings as necessary.  Press into the holes of the tart tins over the baking paper. Place a heaped TBS of mincemeat into each case and scatter some crumble over the tops.  Bake for 15 minutes, until golden and crunchy.

Let cool in the tins for about 5 minutes before lifting out to a wire rack to cool.  Once cooled, dust with icing sugar.

These are really very nice . . . I don't think they will quite replace my good old fashioned plain jane mince tarts as my favourites, but then again, I am somewhat of a traditionalist! 

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  1. Oh, Marie, I shall have to try these! I always make two mince pies: one for us and one for one of our priests whose ancestry is Irish. Question: What is DEMERARA sugar? What is it comparable to in America? CASTER sugar is granulated, I believe. Please reply to


    1. Demerara sugar is Turbinado sugar in North America. Demerara sugar is a partially-refined raw sugar that is made from the first pressing of sugar cane. Once the extracted cane juices evaporate, you're left with large grain sugar that has a golden brown color and a subtle molasses favor. Many prefer demerara to granulated sugar because it's far less processed. Bakers like it because of the texture that it contributes to recipes.

      Caster sugar/castor sugar/superfine sugar is a fine form of granulated sugar. It is used in baking as it dissolves more quickly than granulated sugar. In the UK granulated sugar tends to have quite large granules so is not suitable for baking. However in the US granulated sugar tends to be finer and can be used for baking in some recipes, particularly if the butter and sugar are creamed together for a while at the beginning of the recipe. You can make your own caster sugar by grinding granulated sugar slightly in a food processor or blender (or a very clean coffee grinder). However you do need to be careful when doing this as it can be easy to end up with a sugar powder instead of finer granules.

  2. Oh yum! I have made a batch of your mince tarts already, so now I have to try this as well. Crumble topping! What a great idea.

    I hadn't heard of demerara sugar either, but see that it is sold here as rårörsocker, so I shall look at my local grocery store. There are so many types of sugar these days that it gets confusing! Apart from plain white sugar, I mostly buy muscovado sugar for baking. And of course icing sugar and pearl sugar. There is no caster sugar here, but I make my own. I also found that the sugar here, being beet sugar is quite different from the cane sugar I was used to in Australia. And here I thought that sugar was sugar :-)

    1. Oh, I hope you like the regular batch of mince tarts Marie! I know what you mean about sugar. Before I moved over here I had no idea that there was anything other than white, brown and dark brown! xoxo

  3. mmmmmm, I can smell them from here!!!!!

    1. Thanks Laurie. You should smell my Christmas Cake which is baking in the oven right now! Heavenly bliss! xo

  4. They look perfect..crumb topping and all..I think I have the pan you used,,I made another crumb top recipe on yours w/it;)

    1. Thanks Monique! I love mince pies, but you know when I was a child I did not. Our tastes change as we get older I think. The paper strips work a charm at getting these out! xo

  5. Could you explain processes for those of us without a food processor?

    1. For the Pastry: Measure the flour, almonds, sugar, butter and vanilla seeds into a bowl. Rub together with your finger tips or use a pastry blender to make crumbs. Stir in the egg yolk, and 1 TBS of cold water until it starts to clump together, adding a drop more water if need be. Tip onto lightly floured worktop and knead lightly until smooth. Press into a flat disc, cover with cling film and refrigerate for about half an hour.

      For the crumble topping mix the flour, sugar, butter, orange zest and mixed spice together in a bowl. Tub together with your fingertips until until you get a chunky crumble.


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