Recipe: Paleo mince pies

Just got back from an epic walk with Mum (Bar-barella has de-camped to Wales for a week) which basically consisted of walking up hills through mud, crossing a very fast-flowing river (complete with 5m high waterfall just up from the rocks which formed the “bridge”), passing two sheep carcasses (carcii?) and getting followed by a sneaky stealth pony who appeared behind Mum and tried to eat her coat. All that in my awesome new Sorel boots (they go down to -40 degrees!) which whilst now proven to be waterproof, do weigh a small tonne – very noticeable on hills!

After expending all that energy it was only right to whip up some mince pies and make a cuppa :) I thought that since I used a paleo recipe I would post it here for you guys to enjoy.

Last year I made my own mincemeat – dried apricots, nuts, raisins, spices, apple etc. and since I made so much ended up with two unused jars. To make sure they’d keep I poured brandy in right to the top, put the lids back on and left them in the fridge till recently. Wasn’t quite sure what the contents would be like when I unscrewed the lids, but the fruit was plump with booze and they smelt amazing, so I figured it was good to go!

After a bit of digging around, I found that the best paleo (wheat-free) recipe was actually very simple:

  • 200g ground almonds
  • One large egg white
  • Vanilla essence 
  • Pinch of salt
The method is just as easy – combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Add the egg white slowly to make sure the almonds clump together in a dough. If you need more liquid then add a bit of water.
It’s not all quite so simple though… it will make a very delicate pastry so you can’t roll it out too thin (c. 4mm-5mm is ideal I reckon). I oiled the work surface and the rolling pin to make extra sure it wouldn’t stick, then cut out the rounds with a glass (use a pastry cutter if you have one) and used a knife to carefully get them off the worktop and into the oiled pie tray. I reckon this recipe made about 16 or so small pies, so if you’ve got loads of people round you might want to double it.
And that’s it! A nice start to a few days of what promises to be some fairly epic cooking. I hope you all enjoy the holiday season too :)

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