I’ve added the finished result as the mincemeat took three hours to slowly cook. The house smells fruity and spicy. I like the large lumps of apple, which are cooked but still have their shape. I made four large jars for 89p per jar and each jar would make 24 mince pies. It’s a very cheap yet indulgent treat to eat throughout December and the New Year and nothing beats homemade. The full ‘how to’ is below.
The recipe and full instructions for this can be found by Googling “Delia Smith Mincemeat” and you will find her methods and instructions on the BBC food site. You can make this and not cook it, but by cooking it, you will stop the apples from fermenting and making the jars explode. This will last for years but I give a jar each to family members in advance of Christmas so they can make mince pie with the gift I give them. I have adapted the recipe and haven’t included the expensive dried fruit but substituted the cheaper mixed fruit instead of singular packs of fruit, peel and I omitted the almonds, which are expensive. Even though I have made this cheaply, it knocks spots off anything you can buy as it has so much more flavour and texture. Ingredients: 3 large cored and diced cooking apples, zest and juice of 2 lemons and 2 oranges, 350g of soft dark brown sugar, 4 teaspspoons of mixed spice, half teaspoon nutmeg, half teaspoon of cinnamon, 6 tablespoons of sloe gin (should have been brandy but I don’t have any) 1 250g pack of suet (I used beef suet but you can use veggie suet).
How to make mincemeat. Pour two packs of dried mixed fruit into a large pan/casserole dish. Remove zest off citrus fruit and add to the mixed fruit.
Stir everything together.
Add the sugar – you can see now that I’ve remembered that I am going to slow cook this in the oven and have now transferred this to a casserole dish!! Doh!
Add the cinnamon.
And the nutmeg.
And the mixed spice.
And the fruit juice.
And what every kind of wintery booze you have, if you have rum, sherry or brandy, then add six tablespoons.