Christmas is all about giving and mince pies are the ultimate welcome treat to share with family and friends to celebrate their company during the festive season.
This year, don’t make any old mince pie – make a Generous Mince Pie (GMP) with this super recipe from renowned chef Rose Elliot. The pies are ‘generous’ because the specialist ingredients are all ethically sourced and ensure a fair price is given to the farmers and growers. In addition, when you buy the Super Fruit Mix from the ethical website www.ethicallyessential.coop 15% of the cost goes straight to Caring at Christmas. So as you help yourself or your friends to another mince pie, you’ll be helping others too.
Reduce Your Festive Food Footprint
With Ethically Essential you can prepare these delicious mince pies in the knowledge that you have reduced your ‘food footprint’ this Christmas by supporting fairtrade and ethical suppliers.
Rose says: “My GMPs are filled to the brim with delicious fresh and spicy fat-free mincemeat, sweetened with just the natural sugar in the fruits and a little maple syrup. This succulent and tasty mincemeat is further improved with a little marsala or brandy to give a celebratory touch.”
GENEROUS MINCE PIE RECIPE
This is available to download at www.ethicallyessential.coop in the Recipe Section. It is also here below for your convenience.
CARING AT CHRISTMAS
Caring at Christmas is a registered charity that helps homeless people in the Bristol area at Christmas and throughout the year. Over the Christmas week, it runs an emergency shelter and offers food, clothing, companionship and activities to help people who struggle at this time of year. The charity is local to Essential Trading (which hosts www.ethicallyessential.coop) who have supported it for the last 10 years.
www.ethicallyessential.coop brings ethical foods to your fingertips. This online shop features a wide range of ethical foods from store cupboard essentials to more exotic and unusual fare. www.ethicallyessential.coop makes it easy for you to make a sustainable choice by offering an ethical shopping basket at the push of a button. Shop here with confidence knowing that every fairtrade product has proven provenance and is ethically traded.
For more information or an image of the GMPs, contact:
Katherine Selby, PR Workshop, Katherine@prworkshop.co.uk 020 8657 4422
FRESH AND SPICY MINCEMEAT (enough for 24 mince pies)
125g (4oz) Essential dried fruit salad mix, including apricots and apple rings
175g (6oz) Essential super-fruit mix
50g (2oz) Essential apple-juice infused dried cranberries
4 tablespoons marsala, brandy or orange juice
2 tablespoons maple syrup
½ teaspoon ground Essential organic ginger
½ teaspoon Essential organic mixed spice
½ teaspoon Essential Fairtrade organic cinnamon
1 small banana, peeled
• Chop the fruit salad mix using a knife or snipping it with scissors. Put into a bowl with the super fruit mix, dried cranberries, marsala, brandy or orange juice, maple syrup and spices. Mix well, then cover and leave for 12-24 hours, stirring occasionally.
• Put the mixture into a food processor along with the banana and pulse until the mixture is chopped and blended, but still has some texture.
• Keep in a covered bowl in the fridge for up to a week.
• Remember: any left over mince meat can be warmed and served with vanilla ice cream for a festive treat!
FOR THE PASTRY
This pastry is richer than a normal shortcrust, really easy to make, and comes out very light and crumbly, just how I like wholemeal pastry to be. If you can get wholemeal spelt flour – that is, flour milled from the original, oldest variety of wheat – do use that; it has a lovely sweet, nutty flavour. Otherwise, use a finely-milled wholemeal flour.
250g (9oz) Essential wholemeal spelt flour
175g (7oz) soft, salted butter or pure vegetable margarine
• Put the flour and butter into a bowl. Using a fork, lightly blend them together until they form a dough
• Gather the dough up into a ball, knead it lightly on a floured board and roll it out, not too thinly.
TO MAKE THE GMPs (Makes 12 mince pies)
Pastry as above
½ quantity (300-350g (10-12oz) of Fresh and Spicy Mincemeat, as above
3-4 tablespoons soya milk for brushing
a little caster sugar, for sprinkling
• Set the oven to 220°C (425°F), gas mark 7
• On a lightly-floured board, roll the pastry out fairly thinly, but be gentle with it: this pastry is not supposed to roll out extra thin.
• Cut circles to fit small tartlet tins; for my tins I use a 7cm (23/4in) round cutter for the base of the tins and a 5.7cm (21/2in) cutter for the top.
• Ease the larger circles of pastry into the tins and fill with a good teaspoonful of mincemeat. Cover with a smaller pastry circle to fit the top, press down lightly.
• Brush the tops of the pies with soya milk and sprinkle quite thickly with caster sugar. With a skewer make a steam-hole in the centre of each pie.
• Bake for about 10 minutes, until the pastry is set and the sugar on top looks crisp.
• Cool slightly then carefully ease the GMPs from the tin using a palette knife.
You can do this after cooking, once the GMPs are completely cold, or freeze them in the tins before brushing with soya milk and sprinkling with sugar. To cook, de-frost, brush with soya milk, sprinkle with caster sugar and bake as described.
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