Mince & Cherry Pies with Honey Jack Daniel’s

A Christmas favorite with a twist

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought I’d start playing with some ideas for the season, and being a fan of Mince Pies, decided to put my own twist on this popular classic, with Glace Cherries and (typically) a splash of Honey Jack Daniel’s.

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I used:
1 375g pre-made Puff Pastry sheet (from which I was able to make 12 pies)
1 jar of Traditional Mincemeat (though IĀ didn’t use the whole jar)
Glace Cherries
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey

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Cut out the pastry bases with a cookie cutter, and place in a buttered baking tray, along with a cherry in each one.

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Spoon out some mincemeat meat into a bowl, and add a splash or two of JD, just enough so that it mixes in with the mince without making it too runny. Spoon this mix into each pie.

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Cut out the pastry tops with a smaller cookie cutter, place on top of each, then apply a milk wash.

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Place in the middle of a pre-heated oven at gas mark 6 (400 degrees F) for 20 minutes.

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Done! Quick and easy, ideal for snacks, dessert or party food. I’m already looking forward to making more this year.

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Oh and Batman appreciated them too.

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Banoffee & Peanut Butter Pie

Banoffee Pie with a twist

For a while now I’ve been meaning to try making an actual Banoffee Pie (many of my previous experiments have included bananas and/or a banoffee theme), but rather than repeat what others have done, I wanted to try to create something unique. After recently discovering that I do actually like peanut butter in the right amount (I hated it as child), I thought it’d be an ideal addition, and just to add something a little extra, some crisped rice cereal too.
I must say the photos could’ve been better, but I hope this quick and easy idea appeals to you regardless.

I used:

1 pre-made sweet pastry base
1 Banana
1 can of Carnation Caramel
Peanut Butter
A handful of Rice Krispies

Applying the peanut butter was a bit fiddly….

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Next was the crisped rice.

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Then the caramel sauce was added a little at a time and spread around.

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I then placed it in the fridge for a short period….done!

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Tasted great, and the peanut butter compliments the banoffee taste really well. I’d make this one again.

Easter Egg Pie

No eggs-acellent puns….whoops

Shortly before Easter, a friend suggested that I “make something Easter-themed”. I agreed. “Make a flan!”, he then suggested. He may have been joking at this point, but that was enough to get the ideas flowing, ideas which then turned into a Mini Egg Pie (the Rocky Road Pie I also made was a practise of-sorts for this, though luckily that became something good too).

It’s a simple enough recipe; take a handful of different types of miniature eggs, and cover them in melted cooking chocolate.

I used:
1 300g (large) bar of milk chocolate for cooking
1 ready-made sweet pie crust
Mini Eggs
Caramel Eggs
Smarties Eggs
Milkybar Eggs
Strawberry flavoured frosting powder

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Lay the eggs out in the pie crust, then cover evenly with the melted chocolate.

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Allow to cool, chill overnight in the fridge, then cover with icing sugar or flavoured icing powder.

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I then proceeded to take many photos….

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If you’ve got any leftover chocolate or eggs, or need an idea for next Easter (I’d originally hoped to get this posted sooner), here you are. I should point out that yes, I know that many people may think that the words ‘leftover’ and ‘chocolate’ don’t belong together at all!

Rocky Road (To Hell) Pie

Parental supervision is advised (apparently!)

A simple enough idea – a homemade (well, cheated with the crust) Rocky Road Pie. Marshmallows, mixed fruit and glace cherries coated in melted chocolate.

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The chocolate DID NOT want to cooperate in the melting process though. You know how they say “Always ask for assistance from a grown-up”….yeah, haha.

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Turned out ok though. Allow to cool, then chill overnight.

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This was actually a test run for something similar I want to do for Easter, so I’ll hopefully post that next month.

Bourbon Swirl

A quick dessert idea

After recently discovering that a certain well-known supermarket has launched a Bourbon Biscuit Chocolate Spread, I couldn’t resist the idea of seeing what I could do with it – I opted to go back to the old tried and tested pastry swirl recipe. It’s simple and doesn’t take long to prepare and cook.

You’ll need:
– 1 sheet of puff pastry (I used a pre-rolled sheet)
– Bourbon Biscuit Chocolate SpreadĀ  (though I’m sure regular Chocolate Spread and Bourbon biscuits will suffice!)
– A handful of crushed Hob Nob biscuits
– Mini marshmellows

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Lay out the pastry, and apply a layer of spread, allowing for space to fold, as demonstrated.

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Sprinkle the crushed Hob Nobs (as generous as you choose to be) and the marshmellows on top, fold and repeat.

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Continue until you’re just left to fold the final pastry layer to cover. Apply a milk wash, then place in the oven, pre-heated at gas mark 7 for 15-20 minutes.

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When ready, it’ll look something like this.

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It’s nice to eat either warm or chilled, as a sweet snack or dessert.

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Hunters Chicken Pastry Swirl

A pastry-covered twist on a classic

For many, bacon is the very peak for perfection. Others will crave chicken when hunger hits. I lean towards the latter, plus I’ll try anything that’s either wrapped in pastry or covered in barbecue sauce, so it was inevitable that I’d try a twist on a Hunters Chicken recipe – I knew I was on to a winner with this one. I neglected to use cheese though. This is a really simple recipe and doesn’t take long to prepare.

You’ll need:

320g of puff pastry (I opted for a pre-rolled sheet)
Your prefered brand of barbecue sauce
4 rashers of bacon, cut into smaller pieces
About 240g of cooked and chopped chicken breast

Fry your bacon as normal, just long enough to give it a little crispness, then put to one side, and pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7 (425 degrees F).

Lay out your pastry and, leaving a space of around 3.5 inches, place some of the chicken on the pastry. Add some pieces bacon on top, then top with barbecue sauce. Also remember to leave a little space at each end, to allow for sealing.

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Cover this part of the filling with the blank pastry, as shown, then repeat the previous step and cover again.

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Add more filling, on top of the previous layers, then cover with the remaining pastry. Seal and apply a milk wash, then place on a greased baking tray. Place in the middle of the oven, and cook for about 23 minutes, and rotate the tray halfway through cooking.

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I was quite happy with the end result, tasted great and everyone enjoyed it. Another recipe worth repeating sometime.

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