Mince Pies

Pastry Ingredients
250 g plain flour , plus extra for dusting
50 g icing sugar
125 g good-quality unsalted cold butter , cut into small cubes
1 large free-range egg , beaten
a splash of milk
For the Pies
200 g good-quality mincemeat
1 large free-range or organic egg
1 tablespoon semi-skimmed milk
icing sugar , for dusting
I put together my pastry in a food processor. Weigh your flour, icing sugar and and butter and mix together in the processor. Then add a large egg, bring together again. Add a dash of milk to bring to a consistency you are happy with.
Chill in clingfilm for 30mins.
Preheat the oven to 180ºc and grease a shallow cupcake tray lightly with butter. Dust a clean surface and rolling pin with flour, then roll half the pastry out to the thickness of a pound coin. Carefully cut out 12 circles with a pastry cutter, then lay them in the hollows of the tray, I use a muffin tin, and place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
Roll out the remaining pastry to the same thickness. Using a smaller cutter than before, cut out another 12 circles – these will be the lids for your pies.
Take the pastry bases out of the fridge and fill them just over halfway up with mincemeat, I use Tesco Finest, then smooth the filling out to the edges.
Beat the egg and milk together, then brush over the top edges of the pastry. Lay the lids over the top, then crimp the edges together with your thumb and forefinger so the lids stick to the bases. Then brush once more with the egg wash. Bake in the hot oven for around 25 minutes, or until the pastry is cooked through and golden on top. Dust with icing sugar before serving, then dig in.
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