I do love a good fruit mince tart, the combination of the spicy fruit filling and the buttery pastry is just delicious. I have been making these for as long as I can remember and I often gift these to my favourite people.
You will need to start the fruit mince at least 3-4 weeks ahead of time to allow the fruit mince to mature, although I have also included a recipe I came across recently that I used straight away. You can always use a store-bought fruit mince too, look out for the Robertson’s brand.
The pastry is like shortcake and is a perfect match to the fruit mince filling. This recipe will make about 16 to 18 tarts, any left over fruit mince can be stored in the fridge until next year.
The Christmas cake was made using Belinda Jefferys Last minute Christmas cake recipe. I divided the mixture between 2 x 15cm or 6 inch round cake pans and reduced the baking time to 1 hour and 45 minutes. Cooking time may vary however they should be firm to touch and also check by inserting a skewer in the centre, if it comes out clean the cake is ready.
250g prunes, pitted and chopped
250g dried apricots, chopped
250g brown sugar
1 cup cold tea
2 apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped
1 lemon, zest and juice
125g butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup brandy
100g blanched almonds, chopped
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cinnamon
- Place dried fruit, sugar and tea in a large bowl and mix to combine. Cover and allow to macerate overnight.
- Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
- Divide fruit mince among sterilised jars and store in the pantry to mature for at least 3 weeks.
- Store any fruit mince that is not used within the first month in the fridge where is will last for 12 months.
140g butter, softened
125g icing sugar, sifted if lumpy
1 tsp vanilla extract
220g plain flour
2 egg yolks
- In a food process blend the butter, sugar and vanilla until the pale and creamy.
- Add the flour and pulse until the mixture is crumbly, then add the yolks and pulse until combined.
- Remove the pastry to the bench and bring it together into a smooth ball then divide into 2 pieces and reform into flattened rounds. Wrap and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to rest.
To make the fruit mince tarts
- Preheat the oven to 170C (fan forced). Grease 18 holes of a rounded bottom tart pan and place a 1cm strip of baking paper in each hole – this will act as a sling to help remove the tarts from the tin (refer to picture below).
- Roll out each piece of pastry on a lightly floured bench, or between two pieces of baking paper, to 1/2 cm thick. Use a round cutter, which is just larger than the circumference of the hole, to cut 18 circles then using a floured knife or off-set palette knife carefully transfer the pastry rounds into each hole and gently press them into shape.
- Collect any left over pastry scraps and reform into a small ball. Place in the fridge to rest while you fill the pastry shells, then reroll to 1/2cm thick. Use a star cutter to cut out the tops for the tarts.
- Fill each hole with a tablespoon or two of fruit mince, then place a pastry star on top of each.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes (rotating the pans at around 18 minutes) or until the pastry is golden. Remove from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Allow tarts to stand for 5 minutes before removing from the tin.
- Just before serving dust with icing sugar.
Another fruit mince recipe to try:
2 x 850g cans plums, drained, pitted and flesh pureed – you will need 700g puree
500g apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped
2-3 oranges, zest and juice (you need 200ml)
50g naked Buderim Ginger, finely chopped (optional)
100g orange marmalade
250g demerara sugar
2 tsp Herbies ‘fragrant sweet’ spice mix OR (1/2 tsp ground cloves, 2 tsp ground ginger, 1/2 tsp nutmeg)
100g pecans, chopped
50ml Brookies ‘Slow’ gin (a locally made gin from Byron Bay) OR use brandy
- In a bowl combine the plum puree with the remaining ingredients EXCEPT the gin, cover and allow to macerate for 12 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 120C (fan forced) and place the fruit mixture into a large baking dish. Bake uncovered for 2 to 2.5 hours, stirring after 1.5 hours. The house will smell amazing! Stir through the gin.
- Divide mixture between 4 x 250ml warm sterilised jars using a spoon to pack the mixture down and remove any air bubbles. Seal and store in a dark cupboard. Use within 12 months.