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Catriona 
Posted: 09-Sep-2003, 06:30 AM
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At this time of year, my apple trees are groaning under many pounds of fruit... I thought I'd start a thread with 'things to do with fruits/harvest bounty'!!!

In the UK, mincemeat pies and tarts are popular at Christmas. Bottle up some 'mincemeat' now for use at Christmas. BTW, mincemeat is a 'sweet' chutney type of mix, not a meat....! I have stopped using one of my own family recipes in favour of one of Delia Smith's.... Delia, for those of you who are not au fait with British cooks is the REAL kitchen goddess, not Nigella Lawson... biggrin.gif


COURTESY OF DELIA SMITH's COOKBOOK (I think it is from her Christmas one, but can't be sure!)

Home-made mincemeat is dead simple to make. But in the past people used to have trouble storing it. This was because the high percentage of apples oozed too much juice and the juice started to ferment. In the following recipe the mincemeat is placed in a barely warm oven and so the suet gradually melts and as this happens it coats all the fruits, including the apples, sealing in the juices. Vegetarians can make this mincemeat happily, using vegetarian suet.

Makes 6 lb (2.75 kg)

1 lb (450 g) Bramley apples, cored and chopped small (no need to peel them)
8 oz (225 g) shredded suet
12 oz (350 g) raisins
8 oz (225 g) sultanas
8 oz (225 g) currants
8 oz (225 g) whole mixed candied peel, finely chopped
12 oz (350 g) soft dark brown sugar
grated zest and juice 2 oranges
grated zest and juice 2 lemons
2 oz (50 g) whole almonds, cut into slivers
4 level teaspoons mixed ground spice
1/2 level teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 level teaspoon nutmeg
6 tablespoons brandy

You will also need six 0.5 litre jars.


All you do is combine all the ingredients, except for the brandy, in a large mixing bowl, stirring them and mixing them together very thoroughly indeed. Then cover the bowl with a clean cloth and leave the mixture in a cool place overnight or for 12 hours, so the flavours have a chance to mingle and develop. After that pre-heat the oven to gas mark 1/4, 225F (120C). Cover the bowl loosely with foil and place it in the oven for 3 hours.

Then remove the bowl from the oven and don't worry about the appearance of the mincemeat, which will look positively swimming in fat. This is how it should look. As it cools stir it from time to time; the fat will coagulate and instead of it being in tiny shreds it will encase all the other ingredients. When the mincemeat is quite cold stir in the brandy. Pack in jars that have been washed, dried and placed in a moderate oven for 5 minutes, cover with waxed discs and seal. The mincemeat will keep in a cool, dark cupboard indefinitely, but I think it is best eaten within a year of making.
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Catriona 
Posted: 09-Sep-2003, 06:47 AM
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Now it's getting cooler,

This post has been edited by Catriona on 28-Jul-2004, 06:11 PM
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maggiemahone1 
Posted: 09-Sep-2003, 08:37 PM
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That sounds yummy, Catriona!

We have an abundance of apples this year. My Dad planted an apple orchard about 3 or 4 years before he passed away in 1995. This year has been the best year for apples. I don't know if it was due to all the rain we got or what. I made an apple crumb pie Sunday and it was delicious. I topped it off with whipped cream!

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Catriona 
Posted: 10-Sep-2003, 02:52 AM
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It must be wonderful to be able to remember your father through his gift of the orchard...



This post has been edited by Catriona on 28-Jul-2004, 06:12 PM
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