We made these mince pies using two recipes taught at London’s National Training School For Cookery between 1909 and 1912; one for the shortcrust pastry and the other for the rich fruit mincemeat, giving us an idea of what mince pies would've looked, smelt and tasted like 111+ years ago today.
We'd mincemeat, made the night before, had no time at all to mature but the flavour was still phenomenal. As they baked, they filled our kitchen with the most beautiful scent. We’ll definitely be making these again next year, and by then the flavours will be even better!
While Edwardian mince pies were, from what we could tell, rich in flavour but plain in decoration, we did hand-cut a little pastry holly to top one of our pies. Guess who’s getting that one! 🎅
Original Recipes: 'Short Crust' & 'Mincemeat' (Book 2, 1909)
Speed: Not including the time taken to make the mincemeat, 1 hour | Makes: 16
1. Up to a year before you make these mince pies (possibly even further in advance), you can make an Edwardian mincemeat.
2. On the day or night before making, make a shortcrust pastry.
3. Roll out your pastry to a quartre of an inch in thickness and cut out rounds large enough to fill 16 tartlet tins. You'll want the pastry to come slightly up over the sides of the tins as it does shrink slightly.
4. Fill the cases with 2 tsp. of the mincemeat.
5. Cut out round pastry tops that are a little smaller than the cases and place these over the mincemeat, lightly pressing together the pastry to seal it around the mincemeat. You can make little decorations out of the scrap pastry if wanted!
6. Brush over the tops with egg white, sprinkle caster or granulated sugar over the tops and bake for 20 minutes at 180°C / 356°F / Gas Mark 4 for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 160°C / 320°F / Gas Mark 3 and cook for another 10.
You can have them hot or cold. We ate ours hot with brandy cream.
Original Recipes for 'Short Crust' and 'Mincemeat'
'BOOK 2': High-Class Cookery Recipes for the National Training School of Cookery, 11th Edition (1909)
Author: Mrs Charles Clarke, Principal of the National Training School of Cookery
Publisher: William Clowes & Sons Limited (23 Cockspur Street, S.W. London, England, U.K.)