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Everything you need to know about Mince Pies

A festive favourite, mince pies are all we seem to talk about this time of year at Oast to Host HQ.  Quite honestly, I think mince pies would probably be our mastermind subject. 

We thought that it's probably a little unfair keeping all this knowledge to ourselves, so we've decided to share with you some of our knowledge about mince pies.  Use it to make informed chit chat at your upcoming Christmas parties! 

 

Where did they come from? 

Mincemeat can be traced back to the 13th century in the middle east but the pie itself was a British invention after crusaders brought the mincemeat back with them. 

They started out as a savoury main course filled with spiced fruits and meat such as lamb, rather than just the dried fruits and spices mix as they are today.

There are many religious connotations behind the traditional mince pie:

  1. They were first made in an oval shape to represent the manger that Jesus slept in as a baby, with the top representing his swaddling clothes.
  2. The original recipe included thirteen ingredients, each ingredient representative of the twelve apostles and Christ
  3. The star often found on the top of a mince pie is said to represent the star followed by the three wise men.
  4. The spices in the mince pies are meant to relate to the gifts given by these wise men - Cinnamon, Clove and Nutmeg.

This is perhaps why mince pies are, still today, such an important part of this ultimately Christian celebration.

FUN FACT: During the Stuart and Georgian times, in the UK, mince pies were a status symbol at Christmas. The very rich liked to show off at their Christmas parties by having pies made in different shapes (like stars, crescents, hearts, tears, & flowers); the fancy shaped pies could often be fitted together a bit like a jigsaw! Having pies like this meant you were rich and could afford to employ the best, and most expensive, pastry cooks.

 

Joke time

Now, a Christmassy blog isn't complete without a terrible joke right? These are certainly the centre of our Christmases. Well here are four of our mince pie favourite jokes (prepare yourself for side splittingly terrible jokes...):

  • Q: Whats a detectives favourite pie?
  • A: A mince spy
  • Q: What do you get if you cross a jogger with an apple pie?
  • A: Puff pastry
  • Q: What's the best thing to put into a pie?
  • A: Your teeth!
  • Q: Why did the pie go to a dentist?
  • A: Because he needed a filling!
OK we'll give you a moment now to recover from your laughter...

 

Recipes

Don't feel like because you're following a gluten free diet you can't enjoy this seasonal delight for the palette.  You totally can.  

These are our two simple mince pie recipes using our Oast To Host Pastry Flour:

 Puff Pastry Mince Pies 

The real deal...

Now not everyone wants to spend their evenings baking mince pies and that's totally fine.  This is why we've done it for you.  We've developed the recipes for the most delicious mince pies, including some slightly unexpected flavours and you can buy them right here:

All of these don't just have to be for you at home, we package them beautifully so you can bring them to your next dinner party or even give them as a Christmas present for someone special.

 

Enjoy and happy munching! 


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