The first thing that springs to mind when I think about Christmas food is mince pies. These are small pies filled with a sweet mixture of dried fruits and spices called “mincemeat”. Serve it warm with mulled wine and you have the perfect Christmas treat.
However, what I have noticed is how expensive they can be in supermarkets. A box of six can cost between £1.49 and £2.50. Mince pies are very simple to make and can be cheap too.
Instead of making pastry from scratch, save time and money by buying it ready-made. It costs around £1. There are different kinds, I used shortcrust but puff pastry is also a good option. You can also buy mincemeat in jars, costing 80p in Tesco. You can make 10-12 mince pies for under £2.
Most students don’t have biscuit or pastry cutters, but the rim of a jar or a glass work perfectly to make a circle. This may need some trial and error to find the right size, depending on your bun tray. If you don’t own a rolling pin, just remove the label from a large bottle and fill it with water.
Whilst they may not look the prettiest, they taste delicious. They’re cheap and easy to make. Plus, it’ll help you get into the festive spirit.
Ready-made shortcrust pastry
1 jar of mincemeat
You will need:
A bun tray
A rolling pin/a filled, labelless bottle
- Preheat your oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4.
- Roll out your pastry to a 3mm thickness.
- Using a glass or a jar, cut out circles and press them into your bun tin. The circle should cover the sides of the bun hole. Repeat until all of the holes are filled.
- Spoon your mincemeat into each pie. Make sure to divide it equally.
- Cut more circles out from the pastry. These should be around the same size as the top of the pie. Alternatively, you can chop shapes and layer those on top.
- Place your circles on top of the pies and press the sides together using your fingers or a fork.
- With a knife, poke two holes into the top.
- Beat the egg or pour your milk into a container, depending on which you are using. Use your fingers to glaze the tops of the pies with the egg or milk.
- Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.
- Leave to cool and enjoy!