Citrusy Mince Pies

Hello lovelies! Today is a beautiful, clear, cold December day here in Cheshire. I’m trying very hard to ignore the political debacle that has been raging in Westminster over the past 24 hours. Honestly, I’m so sick of hearing about Brexit and all that goes with it. I feel like fleeing to some tiny cottage in the Welsh hills that has very little contact with the outside world and is free from the irritating press, the over-zealous Christmas marketers and those jostling politicians 😄 . But seeing as though I cannot do that, I’ll escape to my country kitchen instead and get lost in the heady scent of orange zest and citrusy mincemeat.

Once December rolls in, mince pie season is officially open. I bake at least a dozen mince pies a week. This year I decided to something a bit different with my pastry, I added some orange zest. Oh my goodness! This simple addition takes an ordinary mince pie and turns it into a luxury mince pie!

My kitchen smelled so Christmassy as I was zesting the orange, and don’t you think that those beautiful golden flecks look so pretty? I know that you can buy mince pies for very little but after a taste test of sorts, my family agree that homemade, especially with this luxurious addition to my pastry, tops what can be bought in store. The added bonus is that homely feel that comes from freshly baking festive treats that drifts from the kitchen through the rest of the home.

I’ve created a recipe card for you to print off if you fancy giving this orange sweet shortcrust pastry a go. I’ve doubled my normal recipe which means that you should be able to get about 24 mince pies out of it. I usually only bake a dozen at a time to ensure that we always have fresh mince pies to nibble on. I wrap the excess dough in cling wrap and pop it into the fridge as needed. If you don’t go through mince pies as quickly as we do then you can wrap the excess dough in cling wrap and pop it into the freezer instead. Just take it out to thaw a few hours before you want to bake up a batch of mince pies.

Of course, you could double the recipe and divide your dough into 4, wrap each ball individually and freeze. That way you can just whip out the dough, thaw, roll and get cracking with your mince pies rather than have to make dough every week. It’s a great time-saver.

linking up with:

A Wise Woman

Raising Homemakers

Yield: 24 Mince PiesAuthor: Shirley-Ann Vels

Citrus Sweet Shortcrust Pastry

prep time: 15 minscook time:total time: 15 mins


  • 450g flour
  • 4ml salt
  • 200g butter
  • 50g castor sugar
  • 3 extra-large egg yolks
  • 60 ml water
  • Zest from one orange


  1. Place the flour and salt in a bowl. Cut the butter into 1.5cm cubes and distribute evenly over the flour. 
  2. Rub the fat lightly into the flour with your fingertips, lifting up the mixture while rubbing to keep as cool as possible. 

  3. Add the sugar and orange zest and mix in well.
  4. Beat the egg yolks together and mix in the cold water, then make a well in the centre of the flour and stir in the egg and water mixture with a knife to produce a soft dough.
  5. Turn out the dough onto a floured board and knead gently until it is pliable and free from cracks. Roll out to the required thickness.

    * Halve the ingredients if you will just be needing a base for a pie.

    * It is usually baked at 180 degrees C

Handy Tip

  1. I place all the ingredients in a food processor and using the blade fitting, pulse the dry ingredients and the butter together. I then add the water and run the food processor until all the ingredients are just combined. Makes for a quick, no-fuss pastry

Created using The Recipes Generator

(1) Comment

  1. Gill says:

    Sounds delicious! I have used orange juice instead of water before, but never added grated rind. What mincemeat do you like? I use the Ballymaloe recipe ��

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