Dad’s favorite, mince meat pies, get a healthy makeover! And fortunately, these are hands-down one of the best mince meat pies ever, even for people who aren’t fans of mince meat (like myself).  The almond short crust is like a cookie!

Almond short crust

  • 2 ½ cups (8 ¾ oz) almond meal or ground almonds

  • 2 Tbsp. honey, organic maple syrup or rice syrup

  • 2 Tbsp. macadamia or light olive oil, almond oil, melted butter or cold pressed coconut oil

  • 1 egg

  • 1 tsp. vanilla bean paste or extract

  • 7 oz. fruit mince pie filling (see below), enough for 10 pies

Directions

  1. Combine almond meal, honey, oil, vanilla and egg into a large bowl.

  2. Mix by hand until you form a soft dough.

  3. Add a splash of water  if needed to form into a soft dough.

  4. Roll out carefully between 2 sheets of baking paper and cut into circles, large enough to to cover the base and sides of your tart shells.

  5. Make sure to prepare 10 tart shells before lining with a light coat of oil or butter, followed by a dusting of coconut or ground almonds to prevent sticking.

  6. Fill lined tart shells with 1 tbsp of the fruit mince.

  7. Roll out rest of the pastry and cut out in the shape of stars.

  8. Arrange stars over the top of the mince pies.

  9. Bake in a low 150 C (300 F) oven for 30 minutes or until golden.

  10. Cool completely before turning out of the tin.

Makes 10 delicious fruit mince pies
Store in an airtight container for 7 days.

Nutrition for 1 fruit mince pie with pastry
Protein: 6  g
Total fat: 17.5 g
Saturated: 1.5 g
Carbs: 13.7 g
Calories 232
Kilojoules: 972

Fruit Mince Pie Filling (original recipe here) – This filling is so good that it makes a fabulous ice cream topping!

Ingredients

  • 17 ½ oz apples, finely diced with the skin (golden delicious, pink lady) are naturally sweet and delicious

  • 8 ¾ oz  raisins

  • 3 ½ oz cranberries or sun-dried cherries

  • ½ cup erythritol or Stevia

  • ½ cup palm sugar (or just another ½ cup of erythritol or Stevia)

  • ¼ cup brandy

  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon

  • ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg

  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger

  • 1 cup chopped pecans

  • Zest of 1 orange

  • 2 cups white grape juice (much less sugar than apple juice!)

  • 1 tsp. vanilla bean paste or extract

Directions

  1. Combine all the ingredients into a pot.

  2. Cover the pot and simmer over a gentle heat for 30 minutes, making sure to stir every now and then. Make sure not to boil too fast, just a slow gentle simmer.

  3. Add more apple juice if need  to keep the mixture plump and moist then simmer for another 30 minutes. (You may want to cook uncovered for some or all of the time if you don’t want much juice, to allow it to reduce down to a chunky consistency.  For an ice cream topping, you may want a little juice.)

  4. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.  Now at this stage your fruit mince will be ready to enjoy – but for those who want to add that festive cheer, you can stir through a generous splash of calvados ( apple brandy).

  5. Your fruit mince is now ready and it’s delicious made into pies, tarts or folded into Christmas Baked muffins.