Blog Archives

Wondercat Christmas: Mo Farah Mince Pies

Hello! It’s totally Christmas time!

Here at Wondercat we’ve been fabulizing the tree and decking the halls…the season has us in its tinselly grasp!
This weekend called for a bit of festive munchables, but, to be honest, we were more about the eating than the baking…time to whip up some lightening fast mincemeat and turn it into pies…so bloody scrumptious they’ll make you throw your arms wide and pull the “Farah face”!

Yes Mo, they're that good.

Yes Mo, they’re that good.

Mo Farah Mince Pies

Pretty shot huh? We were simultaneously holding the plate in front of the tree and photographing...life behind the curtain ain't so glamorous!

Pretty shot huh? We were simultaneously holding the plate in front of the tree and photographing…life behind the curtain ain’t so glamorous!

Mincemeat

equal weights of:

  • Dried fruits of various kinds-Plump raisins? A sour cherry perhaps? Christmas craisins? How about some candied peel? Throw caution to the wind, live on the edge, do it for Baby Jesus!
  • Cooking apples-peeled and chopped into little bits…not the cores, dumbass!

quarter weight of:

  • Brown sugar
  • Ginger beer
  • Butter
  • Almonds, toasted and chopped
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Brandy, or some other delightful booze
  • Lemon zest
  • Orange zest

So, the equation for mincemeat is as follows (food algebra, brain food):
(4x(fruit+apple)+x(sugar+beer+butter+almonds)+spice+zest+booze)-bakers scoffing privileges

Just call me (P)Einstein! *We know, we know, total cracker joke right? Speaking of cracker jokes we heard THE BEST today…ready for this??! “How does King Wenceslas’ like his pizza?” We’ll pop the answer at the bottom of the post…worth every second of scrolling, we promise you!*

Back to the mince meat…

  • Just throw everything in a big ol’ pan (except the brandy and nuts) and boil away until the apples have turned mushy.
  • Let it cool for a while then stir in the almonds and as much booze as you can without making it a big sloppy mess…we got a good few glugs in let me tell you! *we had also been drinking the booze so were dancing around in just our pants singing Nicky Minaj…sometimes life calls for a semi-nekkid Minaj moment*.
  • Throw it into sterilised jars or as we did, a big lock ‘n’ lock tub and store it in the fridge.

Pastry

  • 200g plain flour
  • 100g butter-cut into cubes
  • couple of tbsp of lemon juice
  • pinch o’ salt
  • tsp vanilla extract
  • Rub butter into flour and salt until breadcrumby
  • Cut in lemon juice and vanilla extract with a butter knife until it starts to come together…and a bit of water if needed but not too much…if it’s a big wet mess then you have fooked it up.
  • Bring it together into a ball, squish it flat, wrap in cling-film and whack in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. *We used this time to go at the mincemeat with a spoon*
IMG_0402

Roll out pastry to 2mm…get a Joseph and Joseph adjustable rolling pin http://www.josephjoseph.com/kitchen-tools/adjustable-rolling-pin as they are AWESOME! Cut out little frilly circles just a little bigger than the pie holes *pie hole *sniggers**

Use some sort of blunt poking device...a little rolling pin, a spatula handle, a dildo... to push the circles down.

Use some sort of blunt poking device…a little rolling pin, a spatula handle, a dildo… to push the circles down.

Mince them up!

Mince them up!

Cut stars the size of the pie holes out of the pastry scraps...DON'T RE-ROLL...it'll taste like shit!

Cut stars the size of the pie holes out of the pastry scraps…DON’T RE-ROLL…it’ll taste like shit!

Plop on a star...oh and I know I totally need a manicure so pipe down Judgey McJudgerson!

Plop on a star…oh and I know I totally need a manicure so pipe down Judgey McJudgerson!

  • Bake at 175C for 20 minutes until the mincemeat is bubbling and the oven stink o’ Christmas.
  • Sprinkle with icing sugar then enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

These pies are tiny, hardly a pie at all. They are actually closer to mini tarts but who has a mince tart? It would be like renaming the iPad mini the iPhone big. Any who, they are a perfect little morsel for a mouthful of Christmas cheer; like Mo Farah and gold medals you can have them all! *Mo probably didn’t eat his gold medals with a glass of wine watching Strictly…but maybe he did? Who knows?*
That’s right kids, go on! Eat all the pies…then bake more and eat them too!

It’s Christmas time!!!!

The moody ambience of a fragrance ad..."Smell like dessert, drive the chubby kids wild...Pie the new fragrance from Wondercat."

The moody ambience of a fragrance ad…”Smell like dessert, drive the chubby kids wild…Pie the new fragrance from Wondercat.”

Oh yeah, the joke…”Deep pan, crisp and even!” We laughed until snot shot from our nose…It doesn’t take much to tickle a Wondercat.

Wondercat 2: Back in the habit

Sista Mary Wondercat!

So after a few weeks of not being able to look at a cake, bat an eyelid at a biscuit or glance at a gateaux we are back in the baking habit…oh happy day!!

We’ve been trying to rev ourselves up for a while but after two weeks channelling Takeru Kobayashi in China and thus returning looking like a giant cha siu baothe Violet Beauregarde of the Far East if you will, we have steered clear of the kitchen.

But we’re back! Christmas has cracked us!  After our traditional “Grand Opening to Christmas”-a trip to Fortnum and Mason for high tea in St James’s and a rampage through their decadent decorations (seriously, rampage…last year I managed to totally decimate a display of baubles…why didn’t I learn from classic cartoon slapstick and not take a bauble from the bottom of the pile!?); a freshly filled decanter of Pedro Ximenez and finally the erecting of the festive foliage…we could hold back no longer…

anyone for tree and cake?

Chadong Panettone and Mykie’s Mincemeat

I’m not adding recipes as the panettone is a work in progress and the mincemeat is just a revamp of Nigella’s Cranberry Studded Mincemeat with a few tweaks.

So, panettone…bit of a disaster for a few reasons…

  1. I didn’t have a recipe I liked
  2. I decided to freestyle and make my own
  3. I used a tin that was too big
  4. I baked it totally wrong

all cake slices should be based on the right angle at Christmas

Apart from that it was fucking marvellous!

The thing about panettone is that it is basically a delicious interbreeding of a yeast bread dough and a rich fruity sponge batter…you make both then have sexytimes in the Kitchenaid.  We didn’t have enough yeast in the house but hey-ho it’ll all be fine…it wasn’t fine.  As we were winging the recipe we had to take a stab in the dark with the baking…we went for “bake like a cake” (low and longer) rather than “bake like bread” (hot and quick)…I think I chose wrong.  The balls up in the baking and choosing a tin far, far to large (I had far too much confidence in the dough being a grower not a shower) we ended up with a dense low-slung cake thing.  Taste-wise it was total Christmas-sexy-good but texturally it was edible brewers droop…back to the drawing board!

dumpy yet delightful

The mincemeat as we admitted, is basically Nigella’s, but we prefer a few sharper notes running through so use a nice Amontillado sherry instead of ruby port, add some mixed peel, and use a zippy Calvados in place of brandy…oh, and we use a heap more dried cranberries!!!!!!

trust the label...

So Christmas is here! Fragrance adverts are taking over the TV and there is tinsel everywhere (except our house, let’s be real people, we are not tinsel people)…(for some reason we’ve started calling it tinzel…well, tiiiinnnnzzzzzzeeelllll…it’s hilariously homo…try it, you won’t go back)

Fudge-packer: a fragrance for men: from Wondercat Bakery

the word "reindeer" totally left my brain; we wanted to say "raisin/raisindeer" but knew it was not the right word...oh the joys of old age.

Three cheers for the return of the holiday season and the return of baked goods from The Wondercat Bakery!

Happy Holidays!