Saturday, December 23, 2006

Marzipan Topped Mince Pies

I've struggled to get into the Christmas mood this year. Usually I'm really into it, enjoying all the trappings of the holiday season, but I've not felt it this year. I think partly it's due to my job becoming more and more difficult and stressful. However, I'm off for a couple of days now, so I decided to try and bring some Christmas zing into my day with a post about mince pies.
I've covered mince pies before when Mr. Kipling tried to make an extra buck by giving them an Easter twist. This time, it is a least Christmas but the marzipan topping is new.
The pies have good moist mincemeat in them. Mincemeat is a concoction of raisins, currents spices, various fruits and usually a bit of booze (cognac and port in this case). Mincemeat originally did have meat in it but it is much less common these days. Interestingly the first mincemeat factory was in Port Byron, New York which I find strange as mince pies are not part of the American Christmas tradition. Perhaps they were, once upon a time.
The pastry is up to Mr. Kiplings usual high standards and the marzipan topping is an interesting addition. The marzipan forms the lid and baked with the rest of the pie. It adds a subtle extra sweetness that really makes this very traditional, yet different and new at the same time. Nice pies.


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