Orange, walnut and whisky mincemeat

Makes about 1.5kg

If you only have time to make one special food for your Christmas feasting, make mincemeat! There is a world of difference between this and anything you can buy in the shops. Even made just a week before Christmas the flavour will still be outstanding. If you haven’t got nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves use mixed spice, but I prefer the Christmas spice triumvirate.

  • 500g cooking apples
  • 60ml water
  • 1 large orange
  • 250g sultanas
  • 250g currants
  • 100g walnut pieces
  • 100g chopped peel 
  • 250g dark muscavado sugar 
  • 1 tsp each of ground cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg
  • 175g shredded suet
  • 5 tbsp whisk
  1. Peel, core and slice the apples. Cook them with the water until soft, then beat them to a pulp and leave to cool completely.
  2. Grate the zest from the orange and squeeze the juice. Add to the apple with all the remaining ingredients, adding the suet and whisky last. Stir well, cover and leave overnight.
  3. Stir the mincemeat again and pot into clean warm jars, then cover and label. Mature for several weeks before use, if possible, but a few days will suffice. If you are going to use the mincemeat quickly it can be kept in a plastic storage box in the fridge, but do pack it down well to exclude any air gaps whether you put it into jars for long-term storage or take the quick-use option.

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