Mince Pie Pinwheels

12 Dec 2018

If you ask a group of people what food they associate most with Christmas, you'll probably get a mixed response. Some might say turkey, some might say sprouts, but I bet a whole lot of them will say mince pies. Now, I'll be honest, I'm not a fan of mince pies, but I can't argue that they are a staple for many people at Christmas time, including my mum. And she is the reason why these mince pie pinwheels came about! She's been tasked with baking 200 mince pies for a group of volunteers, but we're very alike in that we always want to put our own twist on things, so let me tell you about these pinwheels.

But before I jump into chatting about all things festive, let me just apologise for the lack of Christmas baking posts this season. I had been so excited for these chillier months to come around so I could start baking more Christmassy things, but it just hasn't happened. Life has got in the way a little bit, and I wouldn't be surprised if this is my only baking post for this Christmas, so I am very sorry. But I do have other Christmas bakes on this blog, including my favourite Christmas sausage rolls and chocolate Rudolph cupcakes.

A standard mince pie, as you'll know is mincemeat in a shortcrust pastry casing with a lid and maybe a little bit of decoration on top. While they're all well and good, my mum wanted to do something a bit different, so we came up with these pinwheels. Instead of using shortcrust, we used puff pastry, and wrapped the mincemeat that I'd made inside, much like a Swiss roll. They were sliced into individual pinwheels and baked so that they puffed up and the juices from the mincemeat glued the swirl together!

You might have noticed that I said I made the mincemeat, and that's absolutely true. It's a lot easier than you think because it's pretty much a case of just throwing everything in a pan, heating it through and then letting it cool. However, it is best if you make the mincemeat the day before making the pies because you need to let the fruit soak in alcohol overnight. But that's not a long time to wait for delicious, homemade mincemeat! You also don't have to use the mincemeat in mince pies - it could be great in an apple pie or used as a cake topping or filling! The recipe I used is Mary Berry's Special Mincemeat - a) because it's Mary Berry, and b) because my mum absolutely swears by it. I had a fair amount left over after making these, so you can use that in any other way that you fancy. Of course, if you don't fancy making your own, you can always buy a jar.

For the mincemeat, you will need:
175g currants
175g raisins
175g sultanas
175g dried cranberries
100g mixed peel
1 small cooking apple, peeled, cored and finely chopped
125g butter, cut into cubes
50g whole blanched almonds, roughly chopped
225g light muscovado sugar
Half teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon mixed spice
Finely grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
200ml brandy, rum or sherry

For the pinwheels, you will need:
1 x roll of puff pastry (usually 375g - or make your own)
Your mincemeat or a 400g jar of mincemeat
Icing sugar

  1. To make the mincemeat, measure all of the ingredients except the alcohol into a large pan. Heat gently, allowing the butter to melt, then simmer very gently, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.
  2. Allow the mixture to cool completely then stir in the brandy, rum or sherry and let it soak in a cool place overnight.
  3. To make the pinwheels, preheat your oven to 220c/fan 200c/gas mark 7.
  4. Unroll your pastry on to your work surface and spoon your mincemeat on top, spreading it out into an even layer. Be sure not to add too much to avoid leakage and overfilling.
  5. Roll the pastry up from the longest side, much like a Swiss roll, and place into the fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
  6. Cut into 1.5cm slices and place on a lightly greased baking tray, leaving a little gap between each one to allow them to puff up. This may mean that you need to use two trays. Bake for around 10 minutes, turning your baking trays halfway through the baking time, until golden and risen. Move each pinwheel to a wire rack to cool fully.
  7. Once slightly cooled, dust with a little icing sugar and serve up warm.
Like I said, the mincemeat is very simple to make. It does require a fair amount of ingredients, but the result is very much worth it, or so my mum says. Even though I don't like the taste of mincemeat, the house smelled absolutely gorgeous whilst I was making it, so if you're a Christmas scent type of person, this one is for you! And if you're a mince pie person, you absolutely have to try these out. You will love the little twist on the classic Christmas treat, as you're left with a crumbly, buttery goodie that will melt in the mouth and leave you wanting more.

Whould you like to comment?

  1. YUM - these look so good :) I am finally home from college for break, and I am so excited to do a lot of baking! I'm gonna add this to my list of things to cook. Thanks for sharing!
    -Jenna <3
    Follow me back? The Chic Cupcake

  2. Fab post Olivia, I absolutely love your twist on the classic mince pie! These look so festive with the icing sugar dusted on top too. My Mum and I had a go at making our own mince pies this year, my Mum made the mincemeat while I made the pastry both from scratch. I agree with your thoughts on making the house smell amazing! I think those volunteers would love your bake very much. Wishing you a Merry Christmas! :-) xx

    Helen | Helen’s Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

  3. These look gorgeous Olivia! I'd love to try them :)

    Anna // Zu Hause