JCT

#15 The great mince pie challenge

In Food & Drink, midlife, White collar denial on December 2, 2009 at 5:18 pm

December is here, which means mince pie season. Hurrah!

Surrounded by delis and upmarket bakeries as I am, the pickings are rich. But I have a moral dilemma: how much is too much to spend on a handmade mince pie during a recession?

99p?

The Cheeseblock: extremely deep filled, a whopping 350mm at its deepest point; crumbly, buttery pastry, oozing at top; extravagant dusting of icing sugar. 4festive stars

£1?

Luca’s: bijou; pretty, with a crinkly edge and had-cut star on top; nice spicy mincemeat (as you would expect from  place with a Viennese accent to its patisserie), but large expanse of salty pastry overpowers it. Needs more mincemeat. 2.5 festive stars

£1.25?

EDD: pricey but perfectly formed. Good chewy pastry, oozing mincemeat, lavishly glazed. 4 festive stars

£1.25?

Franklins: top-notch homemade mincemeat with citrusy tang and satisfying bite to the fruit; pastry kept minimal. Sadly only 150mm deep tho. 3.5 festive stars

Or should I just swallow hard and force down a ‘The co-operative’ own brand? ‘Rich shortcrust pastry cases filled with delicious mincemeat and lightly dusted with sugar,’ it says on the box. Made in Poland.  £1.09 for six, while stocks last! Palid and suspiciously identical, but topped with a cheery star.

Well, what would you do?

[Note to any SE22 residents: Blackbird mince pies not yet available, before you ask.]

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  1. The mincers are already in at the Bluebird in SE24, and very good they are too. Jump on the 37.

  2. Blimey, at those prices I’ll make them for you. Am obviously far more unemployed than you and have a copy of Nigella’s Christmas gathering dust. I shall be baking from next week. But where to get the best brandy butter?….

    • Indeed. But I justified it by having a mince pie instead of lunch, and the EDD tend to give me free bread whenever I go in. Plus, I’m rubbish at baking.

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