Victorian Mincemeat

The Victorians knew what they were doing when they added real beef to their mincemeat. For the best mince pies this Christmas try this Victorian Mincemeat and accept no substitute.

Victorian Mincemeat - a traditional mincemeat made with real beef for the best mince pies this Christmas

Ever since investigating (otherwise known as making and eating a lot of mince pies) the best recipe for making mincemeat and discovering that the Victorians used real beef I have never looked back. For some reason we balk when we hear about mince pies with actual meat in it but I have no idea why. We eat sweet chutneys with meat all the time. In the words of Joey, what’s not to like? Pastry good. Brandied fruits good. Beef gooood. And as it turns out, together, really good.

This mincemeat is so delicious as it eschews an abundance of sweetness, instead the beef mince adds a wonderful soft texture which is molten in with the rest of the ingredients. Victorian Mincemeat is the ultimate choice for your traditional mince pie, rich, fruity, boozy and you would never know there was meat in it unless told. Which you must do as the veggies get annoyed. All you think is you are eating the best mince pie in town.

Victorian Mincemeat - a traditional mincemeat made with real beef for the best mince pies this Christmas

There are two very fine ladies I turned to in developing this recipe, Delia Smith and Mrs Beeton, two Great British institutions. It wouldn’t be Christmas without either in this house. I took advice from both of them regarding mincemeat and ran with it, adding a few twists and turns along the way.

Print Recipe
Victorian Mincemeat
For the best mince pies this Christmas try this Victorian Mincemeat and accept no substitute.
Victorian Mincemeat - a traditional mincemeat made with real beef for the best mince pies this Christmas
Cuisine British
Keyword christmas
Prep Time 40 minutes
Servings
4x 380g jars
Ingredients
  • 1 bramley apple peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 cox apple peeled, cored and diced
  • 200 g beef suet get your suet from the butcher if you need it gluten-free*
  • 200 g raw beef mince
  • 275 g raisins
  • 225 g currants
  • 100 g natural glace cherries diced
  • 100 g pitted prunes diced
  • 300 g dark brown sugar
  • grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • grated zest and juice of ½ red grapefruit
  • grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 50 g whole almonds slivered
  • 4 teaspoons mixed ground spice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 100 ml brandy
Cuisine British
Keyword christmas
Prep Time 40 minutes
Servings
4x 380g jars
Ingredients
  • 1 bramley apple peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 cox apple peeled, cored and diced
  • 200 g beef suet get your suet from the butcher if you need it gluten-free*
  • 200 g raw beef mince
  • 275 g raisins
  • 225 g currants
  • 100 g natural glace cherries diced
  • 100 g pitted prunes diced
  • 300 g dark brown sugar
  • grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • grated zest and juice of ½ red grapefruit
  • grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 50 g whole almonds slivered
  • 4 teaspoons mixed ground spice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 100 ml brandy
Victorian Mincemeat - a traditional mincemeat made with real beef for the best mince pies this Christmas
Instructions
  1. Stir everything together and decant into jars. My perfect recipe. You should wait about 2 weeks before using so the ingredients get a chance to settle with each other.
Recipe Notes

*Do persevere with different butchers if you are finding fresh suet hard to get hold of. All of my butchers in the high street couldn't get hold of suet for me and in the end I had success with going direct to the farm. To prepare the suet I grated it in the food processor using the grater attachment with scant amounts of rice flour to allow the suet to separate nicely. Sinewy bits will get entangled in the blades, just stop the processor, throw these bits away and carry on going. I store my suet in 200g bags in the freezer for easy use.

If you are vegan or veggie and the idea of putting real beef in your mincemeat is a total non-starter then do try Cranberry Cointreau Mincemeat instead which is fresh fruity and delicious.

Cranberry Cointreau Mincemeat

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