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Suet-free mincemeat

It’s official, I now feel Christmassy. First thing this morning we were in Derby for Hubby to do an exam so I took the opportunity to visit the huge new shopping center there and found a fab cook shop, so naturally had to buy a new sieve and silicon pastry brush. I could have spent a great deal more if Christmas wasn’t just around the corner. The Salvation Army band were playing Christmas songs which gave a great festive air.

On the way home we picked up our Christmas tree…which strangely smells of Gin & Tonic (not that I’m complaining!) and decorated it while drinking mulled wine.

Then this evening, at our local National Trust park, they had an illuminated Christmas tree trail. During the day families had decorated various trees with decorations made from recycled products (e.g. CD’s, plastic bottles) then as night fell candles were lit everywhere. It looked beautiful. I didn’t take my camera as usually photography isn’t allowed, but I noticed loads of people were taking pics so I might go back with my camera Sunday night.

Today I eventually got around to make my mincemeat ready for the marathon Christmas baking fest on Sunday. I don’t know why, but I’m funny about suet in mincemeat so I was really happy when I came across this recipe in Nigella’s How to be a Domestic Goddess a few years back. The only alteration I made was to add cranberries.

Hettie Potter’s suet-free mincemeat
Makes about 2kg

250g soft dark sugar
250ml medium dry cider
1 kg cooking apples, peeled, halved and quartered
1/2 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
250g currants
250g raisins
250g cranberries
75g glace cherries, roughly chopped
75g blanched almonds,
finely chopped rind and juice of 1/2 lemon
6 tbsp brandy or rum

In large saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the cider over a gentle heat. Add the roughly chopped apples to the saucepan. Add all the ingredients, apart from brandy/rum and simmer for around 30 min until everything has a pulpy consistency. Take off the heat and when it has cooled slightly stir in brandy/rum.

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About the author

Jules

Freelance food geek who's passionate about food education.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.butcherbakerblog.com/2007/12/15/suet-free-mincemeat/

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  1. Itinerant Epicure

    Hi Jules,love the sound of this recipe I will try it this year for my family. I came across it after googling for a suet-free mince meat recipe. I made my first homemade pies last year and they came off a treat, here's my version!http://itinerantepicures.blogspot.com/2008/11/emmas-mince-pies-no-suet.html#linksHappy baking!

  2. Jules

    Intinerant Epicure – I hope this recipe works for you. This mincemeat is now a seasonal essential in my house.

  3. Anonymous

    can you help, i made mincemeat for the first time yesterday and in my rush to get ready to go out for lunch i forgot to add in the suet… if the recipe calls for it do you think it will make much difference if it isn't in it. I have made a second batch now with the suet and am thinking about adding suet to the other batch, but if it isn't neccessary I might not even bother and see which one I prefer. (not a big mince pie fan… am hoping home made ones will change that)

  4. Jules

    anon-The reason for the suet is to keep the mincemeat moist and acts as a preservative. The recipe above works without suet because of the amount of apples. The non-suet version you have made will be fine. Just make sure you use it before the version with suet. Hope this helps.

  5. Maninas

    Interesting. I’ll try this one next year.

  6. msMarmitelover

    Will definitely try this out…hate suet plus it’s not veggie..

  7. Bill Robinson

    I have made this one and it works fine (a little more
    brandy makes it even better). On the subject of suet versus no
    suet, the suet, while adding a preservative effect, also helps to
    stop the fruit fro fermenting. just put it in a warm oven for a few
    hours so that the suet melts and wraps around the fruit.

    1. Jules

      Hi Bill,
      I never thought about the suet helping to stop the fruit fermenting. Thanks for the tip
      Jules

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