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Category: Desserts

Modern mincemeat

In 1895, at a time when diet reformers had made "pie" a dirty word, "The Century Cookbook" felt obliged to note that mince pie ("the most indigestible of all") was still "the one universally accepted as a treat, and seldom ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes, plus 8 hours chilling | Makes about 6 cups
Note: In developing this recipe, Times Test Kitchen Director Donna Deane polled a few local pastry chefs. Nancy Silverton of Campanile, who gave us the idea for mini-tarts, suggested Scotch to give our mincemeat a smoky undertone. We added candied ginger, fruit zest and ground cardamom -- an idea from Kimberly Sklar of Lucques in West Hollywood. We scoured farmers markets and well-stocked grocery stores for dried fruits.
  • 5 cups peeled and chopped Granny Smith apples (about 4 apples)
  • 1 quince, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup dried plums, chopped (about 4 ounces)
  • 1 cup dried sliced persimmons, chopped (about 4 ounces)
  • 1 cup dried sour cherries (about 5 ounces)
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped pitted dates
  • 2 tablespoons minced candied ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 cups apple cider
  • 1 cup Scotch
  • 2 sticks cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest

Step 1Combine the apples, quince, plums, persimmons, sour cherries, raisins, dates, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, sugar, apple cider, Scotch, cinnamon and zest in a 5-quart saucepot. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally, then cover and simmer over low heat, 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

Step 2Remove the mincemeat from the heat and let cool to warm. Remove the cinnnnamon sticks. Place in a nonmetallic bowl or container, then cover and chill overnight.

Each of 24 servings:
155 calories; 5 mg. sodium; 0 cholesterol; 0 fat; 0 saturated fat; 38 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram protein; 2.97 grams fiber.
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