Meet Eden Project’s head chef, Mike
Mike has been cooking up huge batches of these easy mince pies.
They’re perfect for vegetarians and he’s included an option to add some chocolate and orange, if you fancy something a little different!
Why not bake them this year and share them with your community with a Mince Hi?
Makes 16 small mince pies
For the pastry
- 375g plain flour and a little extra for rolling the pastry
- 250g plant-based butter, softened and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 125g caster sugar and a little extra for dusting
- 2 large free range eggs (1 for the pastry and 1 for glazing before baking)
For the filling
- 700-800g of vegetarian mincemeat
- 1 apple (cored and grated)
- Zest of 1 orange (optional)
- 80g milk chocolate drops (optional)
Put 375g of flour and the plant-based butter into a large mixing bowl and gently rub together to create a crumb like consistency. This should resemble a bread crumb texture, with no big lumps of butter. In a separate bowl, add 1 egg with 125g sugar and mix well.
Add the sugar and egg mixture to the crumb mix and gently combine until the pastry starts to form a ball, but don’t over mix the pastry!
Once the pastry is smooth and firm to touch, place it in an air tight container or wrap in a suitable covering and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
I like to make a few varieties so have added a chocolate orange filling option alongside the traditional version – choose what you’d like to make. For the traditional variety add 350-400g mincemeat to a bowl with the grated apple and mix well. Leave mixed for around 20 minutes. For the chocolate orange version, mix the rest of the mincemeat with the orange zest and chocolate drops.
Once you have your fillings ready, it’s time to pre heat your oven to 180-200 degrees Celsius, or gas mark 5/6.
Take the pastry out of the fridge, lightly dust a clean worksurface with flour and roll out to around half a cm thickness. Using a round pastry cutter (4 inches or 10cm) cut out 16 rounds and place them into a cake/muffin tray. Re-roll the remaining pastry again to half a cm and use a Christmas shaped cutter or a slightly smaller round cutter to make 16 pie lids
Evenly distribute the mincemeat filling into the bases (8 plain and 8 chocolate orange if you have chosen to do both), lightly beat the remaining egg and brush the edge of the filled pies with a pastry brush, then top with the pastry lids. Lightly brush the lids with the egg mix and sprinkle with some caster sugar before baking.
Bake the mince pies for 18-22 minutes or until the pastry is a beautiful golden-brown colour.
Once cooked, remove from the oven and allow to cool before taking them out of the tray. Dust with a little icing sugar or for the chocolate orange ones try dusting with icing sugar and cocoa powder
Why not try a Mince Hi?
Bake or buy a few mince pies and share with neighbours, colleagues, or your wider community. Stop for a minute, say hi and make time to talk this winter.