Thursday, September 19, 2013

Cherry Mincemeat recipe

French village Diaries recipes Christmas Mincemeat Mince Pies
Cherry Mincemeat
I am not one to talk about Christmas (or even start thinking about it or pressie shopping) in September, except for one thing, the mincemeat for my mince pies. Now is the perfect time to start making this, especially as my recipe uses cooking apples, which are falling like the rain here at the moment. The flavour will be so much better if made now, bottled, and left to mature in a cool, dark cupboard for a few months.

Here is my tried and tested Cherry Mincemeat recipe, adapted from a lovely old jams and preserves book from Mum that dates from 1977 and was produced by The British Sugar Bureau. It is packed full of jams, chutneys, relishes, sauces and 1970’s styled pictures. 

french village diaries 1970s retro cookbook cherry Mincemeat mince pies Christmas
Retro 1970s cookbook
It is retro, but I love it. I am busy making this in batches and we are all looking forward to the smell of freshly cooked mince pies in a few months time – for my pastry recipe, see here.

700g (4 1/2 cups) mixed dry fruits; sultanas, raisins, cherries
150g (1 cup) glacé cherries
100g (1/4 cup) cut mixed peel
250g (1/2 lb) cooking apples, peeled and cored
100g (1/4 cup) shelled walnuts
250g (1.2 lb) shredded suet
450g (2 cups) demerara sugar
2 tsp mixed spice
Cognac to mix (or rum or sloe gin)

Coarsely mince or finely chop dried fruit, peel, apples and nuts. Add the suet, sugar, spice and enough Cognac to give a moist mixture. Stir well and leave to stand, covered, for 2 days. Stir well again and put into sterilised jars. Cover as for jam and leave to mature for at least two weeks (but longer if possible) before using.


  1. Do you use under-ripe apples for the cooking apples? I've never seen cooking apples here.

    1. I use our own apples Sarah. I have no dea what variety they are but as they are rather tart to eat I guess they are cooking apples. I would have thought any crisp, tart eater would work too.


Please don't be shy, I love to hear from you.