For a modern twist on a mince pie, these swirls are quick and easy to make. What’s more, you can assemble and freeze them so they're ready to bake straight from the freezer on Christmas day. They taste best warm from the oven and accompanied with a helping of brandy cream...
460g self raising flour
225g golden caster sugar
1 egg (plus 1 egg to make an egg wash)
1 tbsp water
½ table spoon vanilla or almond extract
A jar of good quality mince meat
100g flaked almonds icing sugar to dust
Start with the pastry and place all the required ingredients into a bowl. Mix until it forms a firm dough. Do the last bit of mixing with your hands. You can use a food processor but make sure you don’t over work the dough or it will become tough. Cover with cling film and leave to firm up in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Line a baking sheet with grease proof paper and warm your oven up to 180ºC (160ºC fan oven). Knead and roll out the pastry into a large rectangle and set aside
Roll out the marzipan (use icing sugar to stop it sticking to the surface) till it is really thin. Thin enough to see through.
Lay the marzipan over the dough and roll them gently together with a rolling pin just to make sure they've stuck to each other.
Spread the mince meat over the pasty. Avoid going too near the edges as it will spill out whilst baking.
Roll the length of pastry into a big log, tucking in as you go.
Cut swirls from the roll around 2cm thick. Use a sawing action, rather than pressing down with a knife when cutting to keep the shape as round as possible.
Mix up an egg and use a pastry brush to cover each swirl with egg wash then cover with almond flakes.
Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the pasty is golden brown. Leave for a minute or two before transferring the swirls from the baking tray to the cooling rack. If you pick them up too early they will break.
Once cooled, sprinkle a little icing sugar over the top and serve while still warm.
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Emma Morton Turner, Guest Editor
View all posts by Emma Morton Turner, Guest Editor