Monday, 23 December 2013

December does Dunnit


I think it is an accurate title.  I am totally done in by December.  And so looking forward to a few days of friends family and not much else.  So, with the very few 'Dunnit does December' posts in mind, telling of my journey through the month, I thought you may  like to see the results of  FRIDAY afternoon.  Three dozen mince pies, 1 dozen were flaky pastry, for that way lies Mr Dunnit's heart, see.
I wouldn't normally bother to show you such stuff; in our house, baking these is a given in December. But here's the thing; after a friendly exchange on Facebook, I've discovered that some of my international friends think that we're eating little pies made of minced beef.  Oh ah. Argh.  No.  Mincemeat is very different from minced meat.  It's dried fruits - sultanas, currants, glace cherries, spices like cinnamon and nutmeg and some suet if you aren't using the vege recipes.  Combined, soaked with something alcoholic..this family favours a teeny splash of brandy and then 'thickened' with some ground almonds.  Some add apple.  Loads of us make it up as we go along, and still more of us buy jars of it ready to spoon into pastry...no harm, no foul.  Just yummy. Which is why, today, MONDAY..I had to make another three dozen.  It would seem that making them an-easy-to-handle size also makes them almost too easy-to-eat!  
  
As I type, I'm enjoying a mug of fine English Breakfast tea from my lovely Christmas china. I'd like to say that the mince pies were warmed,  put on a plate and lightly dusted with icing sugar prior to being delivered to my desk with the tea.  In reality, I scoffed two while waiting for the kettle to boil......no plate, no ceremony.  Ah well, no manners when alone - go on, you would have done the same!  
And finally with reference to my previous post - thanks for asking - this is a jelly roll. Strips of co-ordinating fabrics..each strip about a metre long and 10cm wide....and you get loads, but I don't know how many! Nor do I know why they are called jelly rolls.  I got mine from New Threads, my local b&m and online quilting store.  It's a fabric wonderland. Helped by the fact that some of the fabrics are from scrapbook paper designers...love that overlap.  

So, if you've got time on this countdown to the big Ho Ho Ho, tell me how your preparations are.  And don't panic..it's going to happen anyway.  And oh - so is the ridiculous WOYWW. Why?  Well, we've kept each other company all year haven't we?  No pressure, just as long as you promise to enjoy the day!

26 comments:

Francesca said...

Hi julia , you have certainly been busy. As a child I didn't eat mince pies cos I thought they were meat. Took me a long time to realise they were not. wishing you and yours a very happy christmas. xxxx

Shaz Brooks said...

Much as I love baking( I have in previous years done my own Christmas cakes), I baked nothing apart from some rather nice Raspberry & white chocolate muffins the other day! They were to take into work for all the others who work nights with us. Most(but not all) got there, lol. Shop bought mince pies for us this year, and shop bought Christmas cake/yule log, and most delicious of all, Stollen. Happy Christmas Julia, see you on Wednesday! xxx Shaz

Helen said...

It's funny, I can take or leave mince pies but yours do look lovely. I am glad to know that Wednesday is still happening, not sure when I'll be able to link up but I will try and join in, as it would be a shame to miss one after all this time!!

misteejay said...

No baking for me this year - just ran out of time but have purchased some yummy mince pies & slices from the farmers market. The Stollen from Morrisons was delish but disappeared in the blink of an eye.

I love your cup and saucer - fabulous.

Toni xx

Monica said...

I managed to find mince meat at World Market. Then a Christmas Pudding from New Zealand and Chrissy Cake from UK . made note to shop early next year.

Brenda B said...

We baked up a storm all weekend, I had to put my feet in a foot bath Sunday night cause I'd been on them for two days straight! Brought a bunch of things to work today, they all went down well. I almost made more mince pies for work but made mincemeat buns/muffins instead, which are a plain-ish cake mix (with vanilla and a bit of spice mix), baked with a dollop of mincemeat in the middle. I did dust them with icing sugar, but only because they were for other people! Got more stuff to do tomorrow (more baking!), one of two pressies to wrap and then I'm done. Feet up, glass of wine and a mince pie or three... have a wonderful Christmas, see you on the other side.

Hugs
Brenda

Arnoldo L. Romero, MLA said...

Yum!!! Your minced pies look delicious. Merry Christmas, Julia, and thank you for hosting the WOYWW every week!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

My grandmother made mincemeat pies and tarts EVERY year. Yep, it was a very British event in our household. Although I was never allowed in her kitchen, if I recall, she spent a lot of time making them. Seems some of the ingredients had to soak for a few days, or at least overnight. I loved it when my grandmother made it with candied fruits, but one year she got citron which I hate. It changed the taste of the tarts, so she never made them that way again. Thanks for bringing back very, very British memories for this American gal.

Yours look very flaky and good enough to eat.

Carmen said...

For years I haven't been a fan of mince pies. Tolerated purely because Craig insists on trying them from every blimming shop he can find them in - taste testing he says. This year, don't know what's changed, I can't get enough of them! Weird!

I heard somewhere, think it was the radio, that mincemeat DID used to have meat in with all the fruit! Bleurgh - can you imagine?

Happy Christmas Julia - I shall be sneaking on to see what all the WOYWWers are up to ;)

Glenda Brooks said...

Wishing you and yours a blessed Christmas!

fairy thoughts said...

He he Ah mince pies they look yummy and so easy to eat.....I still have to make mine. As for my preparations I'm in the gym.... No really how else would I get the energy to do all the other stuff. Pressies all wrapped except a treasure chest for my favourite little lady. You know the one. Oh and a zillion sprouts to peel and .... And better get a wiggle on don't you just love Christmas :-))) have a great time and a well earned rest
Janet

voodoo vixen said...

It wouldn't be Christmas without mince pies, now would it? LOL
Wishing you and the Dunnit clan a wonderful Christmas!!

Kate said...

The mince pies look great. I've just finished my usual Christmas Eve bake off - sausage rolls, jam tarts (and cheesy things made with left over pastry), lemon drizzle cake and even a bit of melted chocolate poured into molds. All ready for family to descend this evening. Looking forward to it but as the children point out it really doesn't feel like Christmas?

~Kate~

Kate said...

Nearly forgot - Happy Christmas Dunnits!

Lea.H said...

Your mince pies look divine! Home made always look so amazing! Hubs made some last year, but we remembered too late this year :( boo hoo. Lx

Mary said...

Happy Holidays busy lady. I'm with you, time to breathe and hey, those Christmas movies, are the best way to relax....I didn't do any baking this year...If I bake it, I eat it, but I did purchase some yummies to share. Thank goodness for those who bake!I'll see you again soon!

pearshapedcrafting said...

Wow! Those mince pies look yummy! Haven't made my own this year, been a bit bogged down but have bought some! Merry Christmas, Chris

Christine said...

Glad to know you're keeping busy!! Those pies look scrumptious.
I'll be here tomorrow ... that's what happens when a laptop is on the table next to the comfy sofa!!

Have a great Christmas and thanks for all your posts, loved them all.
xx

Nan G said...

Oh looks so yummy! Not a mince meat fan(I did know what was tho) but the flaky pastry is right up my alley too! grin grin I'll be right over. Well maybe next year. :)) A beautiful tea cup n saucer. Love English Breakfast tea too. Yea WOYWW is on! Enjoy your down time with family and all those lovely eats! Merry Christmas! and have a fab 2014! from Nan, T and Baby.

Princess Judy Palmer said...

I don't think that I've ever eaten a mince meat pie. I remember being in the presence of one as a child and being horrified that there was such a thing as a pie filled with meat.... okay, later I learned about meat pot pies and the horror remained just so you know how that turned out. Oh, and I wasn't a vegetarian child either, just mostly terrified of meat. Yeah.... okay, this comment is getting weird.

Anyway, love the china pattern! And the smell of your baking even if I'm just imagining it. And I'll be here for WOYWW.... because I lack a life or something.

Nan G said...

Sorry if this is a dupe comment....
Thanks for the info about the jelly roll. Thought maybe it was a donut. :) I do know what mincemeat is tho it's not my fave thing. I do love flaky pastry shells! Pretty little tea set and my fave kind of tea. Merry Christmas! and have a fab 2014! from Nan, T and Baby.

BJ said...

OK so I can't sleep and thought why not get up to see if WOYWW is happening and find you say it is but alas no post as yet. Maybe at 4am perchance. BJ the awake.

Pat Langley said...

Your tree is lovely. Love all the festivities!

mamapez5 said...

Thanks for explaining the jelly-roll. I've not come across that before. Your mince-pies look more interesting than mine as I do 'plain looking' ones, but with enriched french flan pastry, and I've made 50 dozen this years! Most were ordered and all were sold except a few for ourselves. the Spanish do not know what they are, and usually take the lids off to look inside. I heard one lady reading my sign at a craft show, and she called them 'minky pea-ays'. But some of my village friends now return each year to buy them because they like them.
Enjoy your few days with the family. Sadly we had to take my son and his partner back to the airport this morning, but we have had a lovely few days together. Hugs. Kate x

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