CarolCooks2 in my kitchen…Mince Pies and Sausage Rolls…plus Silent Night with Simon & Garfunkel.

 

It’s that time of year when there are never enough hours in the day or there are and because we have been dashing about frantically all day we are just too tired to cook anymore…

I always get my mince pies and sausage rolls made and stored in the freezer uncooked and just take them out as required.

Pastry Recipe.

This recipe is my mums she makes the best pastry ever and I try really hard to match hers but she once told me that no two batches of pastry are ever alike and that the only person who realises that is the cook…. I think she is right..mums usually are 🙂

I use half fat to flour so for example 8 oz  Flour and 4 oz fat.

Ice cold water added 1 tbsp at a time( the amount depends on the flour used)

1 egg beaten for the glaze.

I know that fat varies depending on where you live, in the Uk ..well spoilt for choice because we invented pastry…well from as far back as the Romans when it was crude flour and water wrapped around meat and game before cooking and no way would you eat it…it was to retain meat juices.

Over time pastry was enriched with fat and milk and began to vaguely resemble today’s shortcrust. But living here in Thailand my choice is restricted…..I have a choice of pastry fat or Crispo…sometimes I mix the two when making meat pies but I digress.

For mince pies, I use butter. When making pastry everything must be kept cool which here is never easy ..so fat from the fridge, iced water from the fridge and fan madly whirring to keep the air cool..and me folks…I touch the pastry mix as little as possible, I quickly rub the fat into flour to resemble breadcrumbs, add iced water gradually, draw together with your fingers to make a ball, if too dry add more water, cover with a damp cloth and chill for at least 20 mins in the fridge.

When I roll out the pastry I use the heel of my hand to start to flatten the pastry and roll gently out to desired thickness…I handle the pastry as little as possible to keep the pastry cool.

Using a pastry cutter, cut circles and line patty tins, add filling and top with a pastry lid. Brush tops with beaten egg. Cook in the oven on 200c/gas7 for 15-20 mins until golden. Remove from oven, cool slightly and dust with icing sugar.

 

If you haven’t made your sweet mincemeat yet then never fear the recipe is here

However this year I have made a change to my mincemeat and have made mincemeat without using suet/fat…I made some mince pies the day before yesterday and I actually preferred it ..it was lighter and not so dense.

Ingredients:

  • 230 ml ACV
  • 225 gm Brown Sugar
  • 225 gm Granny Smith Apples peeled, cored and chopped.
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • A pinch of ground cloves
  • 250 gm mixed dried fruit of your choice
  • 55  gm almonds
  • The juice and zest of 1 lime and 1 orange
  • 150 ml Brandy

Let’s Cook!

Put the ACV(Apple Cider Vinegar) and the sugar into a pan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved then stir in everything else apart from the Brandy…That gets added last…

Slowly bring the mixture to the boil stirring then lower the heat and cover the pan with a lid and simmer gently for 30-45 minutes until the liquid has reduced.

When ready remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool then stir in the brandy and spoon the mix into sterilised jars.

Note: Some of you may have noticed I don’t add sugar to my shortcrust pastry…With the sweetness of the filling and the icing dusting, I /we all feel it is sugar overload but personal preference if you like to add 1 tbsp sugar to the pastry mix before adding water.

I also use the same pastry for my sausage rolls…

Now….if you make them now omit the cooking stage and freeze uncooked in a sealed container separate the layers with greaseproof paper and just take out however many you want as needed and cook…Simples!

For sausage rolls, I use the same pastry. I add finely chopped onions, garlic and a little sage to my sausage meat or I did in the UK….I can’t get sausage meat here so I make my own very finely chop my pork making sure I add a little of the fat and then add the seasoning as above.

To make the sausage rolls just roll out your pastry take some sausage meat and roll it to form a sausage put the sausage meat on the pastry and roll. Just wet the edge slightly and either use a fork to make some holes in the top or as I do make a couple of slashes on the top of the pasty as in the picture… Cut into equal size pieces and put on a baking tray and then brush the top of the pastry with milk or an egg wash and pop in a preheated oven 200C for 15 mins then reduce the heat to 180C for another 10-15 minutes or until your pastry is golden…It also depends on the size of your sausage rolls.

Once cooked put on a cooling rack and then store in a lidded container…Enjoy!

Every year I make the same recipe that my mother and grandmother used but this year I may take a chance and sneak in a few sausage rolls with a different filling and seasonings…

I thought if I used some fennel and cumin seeds, lightly toast them before crushing them in the pestle and mortar…Chop some pancetta and 2/3 figs and cook them with onions then add all that to the pork it would be quite nice with a scattering of sesame seeds over the pastry…That is my project for next week I’ll let you know what my taste testers think…

Today’s version of “Silent Night” is sung by Simon and Garfunkel...they sang  “Silent Night” over a recording of a news event on Aug 3 1966…this news event included the trial of Richard Speck who murdered 8 student nurses, the Vietnam War and Marting Luther King mobilising a protest for an open housing march in Cicero111…it was an eerie contrast between bleak news and the hopeful singing of “Silent Night by Simon and Garfunkel…They have since made similar recordings against a news background.

Thank you for joining me today as always I look forward to your comments…I’ll be back tomorrow with another Saturday Snippets…Have a lovely evening xx

 

 

37 thoughts on “CarolCooks2 in my kitchen…Mince Pies and Sausage Rolls…plus Silent Night with Simon & Garfunkel.

      1. CarolCooks2 Post author

        As its frost free not much chance of that…lol I do have an ice crusher though which comes out very much like snow and melts just as quickly…haha xx

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    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Try adding half butter and half Crispo not sure what fat you can get there, Robbie I can’t get the same fat I used in the UK(Cookeen) here there is only Crispo…I find that is better for sausage rolls especially if you want s slightly flakier pastry…

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. CarolCooks2 Post author

        I hope it works for you, Robbie sometimes I just go by the feel and add slightly less of the white fat(crispo)…it depends on the humidity here but pastry I handle as little as possible which does help it can be a bit of a juggling act with pastry I find but I have made so much more because covid and its getting better…sigh 🙂

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  3. beetleypete

    My wife’s specialities are mince pies and sausage rolls. I like her sausage rolls with some black pudding mixed in, and she made some mince pies with ‘star tops’ this week that we ate with Tesco Finest vanilla custard! 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      I think my hubby would like black pudding mixed in I might try that for him… Yes star tops are pretty sometimes I do a flaky pastry top or a lattice top which also looks nice.. Snap we had mince pies and custard during the week as well but don’t have the luxury of Marks custard I have to make it.. X

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

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