We first published this delicious recipe for brandy mince pies last Christmas and it was so popular, we wanted to share it with you again this year.


1 medium Bramley

170g mixed fruit (sultanas, raisins and currants)

80g dark brown sugar

50g cold butter

zest of 1 lemon and juice of half

zest and juice of 1 orange

1 tsp mixed spice

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp grating of nutmeg

50 ml brandy

400g sweet shortcrust pastry. Make your own with good quality butter, as short as you dare to make it!


  1. Zest and juice the lemon and orange.
  2. Grate the Bramley and pour over the juice. Add to the dried fruit and spices and mix well.
  3. Grate the cold butter and add to the mix.
  4. Place in a low oven for about 10-15mins just until the butter has melted (this both preserves and prevents the apple fermenting). Stir to coat well.
  5. Leave to cool. Then add brandy.
  6. Spoon into sterilised jars and lids or use immediately.


  1. Roll out the pastry disc tops and bottoms and place the bottoms in the mince pie tin (with approx. 6cm and 7cm cutters)
  2. Place a good tablespoon of mincemeat in each and cover with a smaller pastry disc.
  3. To make star shapes, cut out a star shape in the pastry lid using a star cutter. Do this before placing the lid on top of the mince pie. Remove the star. Give it a quarter turn and place it back on top of the mince pie lid.
  4. Brush pastry lids with beaten egg mixed with a little milk.
  5. Bake for about 15 minutes in a hot oven (200C/180C Fan) until golden brown on top. The exact time will depend on your oven.
  6. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes before removing from the tin then dust with lots of icing sugar.


  • Make the mincemeat as far in advance as possible to allow the flavours to develop (a few months ahead of time if possible, or even a few days helps).
  • Get ahead and flat pack pastry discs in between sheets of greaseproof and store in the freezer until needed.
  • Make the pastry bottom slightly thinner than the top to avoid a soggy bottom.

Tracey Whewell runs local catering company Dolce Vita