As you may be aware, I have developed a seasonal mince pie addiction. It started with my friend Elly’s fabulous mince pies earlier this month when I managed to have 3 in one go and called them lunch… Since then it’s been at least one a day.
Finding that store bought ones were not really cutting it, I decided it was time to make my own. A few hours later, mincemeat was made and waiting for the alcohol of my choice to be added – I’m quite a fan of sherry in mine – what’s your preference?
Now, when it comes to pastry, I was taught at school to rub the butter and flour together with your fingers, getting air into it to keep it light then I normally chuck in some icing sugar and orange zest and it’s good to go. It’s quite therapeutic, has had great results but takes some time. However, that is how I’ve made pastry for about 30 years, until now.
Elly had said she used her processor to make her pastry and to be honest I was a little snooty, thinking well I’m sure that can’t be as good as the traditional way – despite the excellent results. Anyway, I happened to be looking through a Mary Berry Christmas Cookbook (love Mary!) and discovered she used the food processor for making pastry – that was enough to change my thinking – if it’s good enough for Mary it’s definitely ok for me to give it a go. So, I did.
What a revelation, might actually have changed my life! It was so quick and easy and the pastry was lovely to work with. The final test is obviously in the eating and deciding I might be biased, tried them out on the hubby, who polished off 3 in one go, so I guess they were ok!
So, what did mince pies teach me? That there’s more than one way to do things, both are equally effective and are good in their own ways and old ways are not necessarily the best. Going forward, if I have time, I’ll use the traditional method or if I‘m in a rush, it will be the processor. Mind you, can’t see my mince pie addiction ceasing yet, not while there’s still mincemeat left to use!