Real mince pie

Long before the small, fruit mince pies we enjoy today came into fashion, a mince pie used to be a large pie, containing meat. Our recipe harks back to this tradition and uses real meat in addition to raisins, currants and prunes

Stack of Christmas mince pies
  • Preparation time 45 minutes (prep. time)
  • Cooking time 1 hour 45 minutes (cooking time)
  • Serves 1



  • Lean minced beef or mutton 700g
  • Suet 100g
  • Ground cloves 0.5tsp
  • Ground mace 1tsp
  • Ground black pepper 0.5tsp
  • Saffron A pinch
  • Raisins 50g
  • Currants 50g
  • Stoned prunes-chopped 50g



  • Plain flour 450g
  • Salt 2tsp
  • Lard 100g
  • Water 150ml
  • Milk 60ml



  • Butter, sugar and rosewater, melted together 1tbsp of each


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 220C/425F/G7.
  2. Mix the minced meat with all the other filling ingredients.
  3. To make the pastry, melt the lard in the water and milk and bring to the boil.
  4. Take off the heat and add the flour and salt and beat to a soft dough.  Knead on a floured surface until smooth.
  5. Set aside a quarter of the pastry.  Remember to keep it warm.
  6. Mould the large piece of pastry into a 20cm spring form tin to make the base and sides.
  7. Fill the tin with the filling.
  8. Roll out the remaining pastry for the lid, moisten the sides with water and press the lid firmly in place and crimp to make a tight seal.
  9. Trim the edges and use the surplus to decorate the top.  Cut a hole in the middle of the lid.
  10. Bake in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes, and then reduce the temperature to 180C/350F/G4 for a further 75 minutes.
  11. Remove the sides of the tin, brush the whole pie with the glaze and return to the oven for a further 15 minutes.