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Having been asked on several occasions what "mincemeat" is I thought the following recipe may be useful.



These amounts will make 2.5 kg. (5 1/2 lb)


1.6 kg. (3 1/2 lb) dried mixed fruit


Put the dried fruits, apples and almonds in a large bowl.  Add the sugar, suet, spices, lemon, orange rinds and juice and brandy or sherry.  Mix together thoroughly.

Cover the mincemeat and leave to stand for 2 days.  Stir well, put into jars and cover.  Allow at least 2 weeks to mature before using.

Note:  For mincemeat that will keep well use a firm, hard type of cooking apple.  Juicy apples may make the mixture too moist.


225 g (8oz) cooking apples, peeled, cored and grated
100 g (4oz) chopped blanched almonds
450 g (1 lb) dark soft brown sugar
175 g (6 oz) shredded beef suet
5 ml. (1 tsp.) grated nutmeg
5 ml. (1 tsp) ground cinnamon
  grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
  grated rind a juice of 1 orange
300 ml. (1/2 pint) brandy or sherry


Having made the mincemeat for the mince pies, then you may like to try a Christmas Pudding.



These amounts will make 2 puddings serving
approximately 6 people each.


113 g (4 oz) plain flour  

Sift flour, spice and nutmeg into large bowl.  Add breadcrumbs, suet, sugar, raisins, sultanas, peel, finely chopped walnuts or almonds and grated orange peel.

Toss well together.

Combine with beaten egg, brandy or sherry, almond essence and milk.   Mix well.

Leave overnight in a cool place.

Divide between two buttered 2-pint basins.

Cover securely with buttered greaseproof paper or aluminium foil.

Steam steadily for 6 hours replenishing water as it boils away. This can be steamed by placing in a steamer over boiling water or by placing bowl in boiling water ensuring the water does not reach top of the basin. It is most important to keep a close eye on the water levels during cooking.

Cool for 15 minutes in basins, turn out and leave until completely cold.  Wrap in aluminium foil and store in cold dry cupboard until needed. Puddings may be stored in the basins in which they were cooked if preferred.

To serve, unwrap pudding return to buttered basin, cover and steam for a further two hours.  Turn out on to a warm dish and serve with sweet sauce, brandy/whisky butter or cream.


2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) mixed spice
1.25 ml (1/4 tsp) grated nutmeg
227 g (8 oz) fresh white breadcrumbs
284 g (10 oz) finely shredded suet
(beef preferably)
227 g (8 oz) soft brown sugar
340 g (12 oz) seedless raisins
340 g (12 oz) seedless sultanas
57 g (2 oz) mixed chopped peel
57 g (2 oz) shelled walnut halves or blanched almonds finely chopped
  peel of 1 small orange - finely grated
4 large eggs - beaten
1/2 wine glass brandy or dry sherry
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp.) almond essence
142 ml (1/4 pint) milk





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