MINCE PIE

This festive season Pick n Pay will bake over two million mince pies, and will use over 60 tons of fruit, 31 tons of sugar and 63 tons of flour during the process!

Customers go crazy for mince pies this time of year and taste is an important factor for many. Some South Africans even conduct their own tastings of the various retailers’ mince pies and post a review on their personal social media page to tell their friends and family where to get the greatest mince pie this year.

This isn’t surprising as it is such a festive treat, says John Bradshaw, head of marketing for Pick n Pay. He adds that mince pies are growing in popularity each year. Last year Pick n Pay broke their record for the most mince pies ever sold in a Festive Season.

“We reviewed all customer feedback from last year and believe we have perfected our recipe this year to create a delectable mince pie that is made with a butter flavoured sweet pastry and generously filled with a festively spiced fruit mix.”

PnP mince pies have been listed as a favourite by many tasting panels. More recently, Business Insider SA conducted a blind tasting and voted PnP mince pies the favourite.

How best to eat your mince pie?

There are many variations, and everyone has their personal favourite – be it straight out the packet, heated or maybe served with ice-cream or custard. “That is why mince pies are so great. They can be dressed up or down depending on your preference. You can also channel your inner MasterChef and create your own deconstructed version,” says Bradshaw.

If you want to mix it up this year, why not try one of these creations: Chocolate Brownie Mince Pies for those who want the best of both worlds, or the Low-Carb Vegan Mince Pies recipe that definitely won’t leave you feeling deprived. <Full recipes pasted below>

RECIPES:

CHOCOLATE BROWNIE MINCE PIES

Finish this fruity, chocolate-infused pastry with cream before serving.

Serves: 12

Ingredients:

Main Ingredients

  • 2 rolls PnP shortcrust pastry, (400g each)

For the filling:

  • 100 grams 70% dark chocolate, (70% cocoa solids)
  • 100 grams soft butter
  • 175 grams muscovado sugar
  • 2 large PnP eggs, lightly beaten
  • 100 grams plain flour, sifted
  • 250 grams fruit mincemeat
  • 250 ml PnP cream, whipped to soft peaks

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  • Roll out the pastry on a floured surface.
  • Use a 9cm cookie cutter to stamp out rounds to line the holes of a 12-hole muffin tins.
  • Chill for 15 minutes.

For the filling:

  • Melt the dark chocolate.
  • Mix the butter and light muscovado sugar in an electric mixer to combine. Gradually add the lightly beaten eggs, still mixing.
  • Tip in the sifted plain flour and the slightly cooled melted chocolate.
  • Mix until combined.
  • Fold in 250g mincemeat.
  • Put a spoonful of the filling into each pastry case.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes.
  • Leave the pies to cool in the tins for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.
  • Top with cream and serve.

LOW-CARB VEGAN MINCE PIES

This low-carb and dairy free recipe option definitely won’t leave you feeling deprived.

Less than 1 hour  / Serves: 12

Ingredients:

Pastry

  • 75 grams coconut flour
  • 1 cup cashews
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar, or maple syrup
  • 40 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 pinch PnP salt

Filling

  • 75 grams sultanas
  • 75 grams dried cranberries, plus extra for serving
  • 60 grams currants
  • 60 grams PnP juice of orange
  • 7.5 ml raw agave, maple syrup, coconut nectar or date paste
  • 1 pinch PnP ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch PnP ground nutmeg
  • 1 pinch PnP salt

Topping

  • 180 ml cashews
  • 7.5 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 22.5 ml raw agave, maple syrup, coconut nectar or date paste
  • 4 tbsp water
  • 1 pinch PnP salt

Method:

  • Process all pastry ingredients in food processor until finely ground and press firmly into pie tray.
  • If you have a dehydrator, dehydrate pastry shells for 3 hours, alternatively place in the oven on lowest temperature for 30-40 minutes or until firm to the touch.
  • Process all filling ingredients in food processor until it forms a paste and set aside.
  • Blend topping ingredients together until smooth, adding enough water to form a spreadable consistency.
  • Fill pastry shells with filling mixture and top with the creamy topping.
  • Scatter with cranberries and serve.