Because two noisy, bossy, head-strong, stinky, cheeky, cute, obnoxious, tiring, unhelpful female offspring is never enough......we thought, balls to it, let's have some more! With the arrival of twins in 2011, we now have four girls and chaos reigns. Welcome to my space and read all about the mundane, everydayness of Trouble Towers and all who live here.
It's that time of year again when everyone turns to Christmas shopping, and I turn to mince pies.
If truth be told, I started buying and eating them a couple of weeks ago at least. I do love a good mince pie.
Anyway, last year I decided that I ate so many of them, that I should make them in bulk and freeze them. It worked out really well so I thought I'd share it with you in time for this Christmas.
This is what you do.....
You will need.
32 ounces of Self-raising flour
8 ounces of lard/fat
8 ounces of margarine or butter
4 ounces of caster sugar
This will make approximately 48 mince pies, for which you will also need 1200g of mincemeat.
You also need bun trays, and plastic storage containers or freezer bags.
First mix the sugar and flour together, and then rub in the lard and margarine with your fingers. You may want to split the mixture and prepare it in two lots, unless you've got a huge mixing bowl and arms like Popeye.
Then roll out the mixture and cut bottoms for the pies with a round cutter and pop them in the tray. To get 48 pies out of the mixture, you need to roll it quite thin. The pastry will rise during cooking so you can get away with very thin dough.
'scuse the battered trays - they have been used A LOT!
Fill each bottom with a teaspoon of mincemeat.
Then cut some tops either with a slightly smaller cutter, or a shaped one, like a star or bell.
Put the tops on. DO NOT GLAZE!
THIS IS THE POINT AT WHICH YOU FREEZE THEM!
Put the whole tray into the freezer and leave overnight to freeze. Once the pies are solid, pop them out of the tray and store them in the freezer in the plastic containers or freezer bags. You only need the bun trays for this stage so borrow them if you can. 48 pies is four trays so you'll have to do them in shifts if you can't get hold of four.
When you want to eat the mince pies, fill a tray with frozen pies, let them defrost for a couple of hours at room temperature, glaze with an egg, and then bake in the oven as normal at 200 degrees for 20 minutes.
And there you have it - freshly baked mince pies any time you want them for the least effort.
This is the cost breakdown if you're interested...........
Mincemeat sells at Tesco for approx £1 per 400 g (so 1200g = £3)
Flour is approx 30p
Margarine/Butter = £1 Sugar is approx 30p so £4.60 for 48 mince pies, which is less than 10p each (plus the cost of the oven).