Monday, 24 November 2014

Mince Pie Bakewell Squares

This Christmas, Waitrose are running a campaign called 'Bake It Forward'. It's all about baking something for someone who you want to thank, sharing it on Instagram and Twitter using the hashtag #BakeItForward, then tagging your someone and asking them to continue the good deed by doing the same for someone else they know. Together we can all start a chain of baking joy! And maybe win some Waitrose goodies too. Here's Heston Blumenthal to tell you a bit more about #BakeItForward...

I joined in the campaign and decided to make these squares after discussing a mutual love of mince pies with a colleague of mine. I made Apricot Bakewell Squares earlier this year and they were delicious. We both agreed that replacing the jam with mincemeat would be a fantastic festive twist! Seen as she loves mince pies so much I am baking these for her as she is supportive and helpful colleague who certainly deserves these tasty treats!

I started by making the pastry. I rubbed 100g butter into 225g plain flour and 1 tsp salt. I added 2 1/2 tbsp cold water and brought the mixture together to form a dough. I wrapped it in cling film and chilled for 30 minutes. Alternatively you can buy a 375g pack of shortcrust pastry.

I rolled the pastry out to fit my lined and greased baking tin and pricked it with a fork. I chilled it again for 20 minutes, then baked it on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 10 minutes.

To make the sponge I first creamed 200g butter and 200g golden caster sugar together. I whisked in 4 beaten eggs, 1 tsp brandy and 1/2 tsp almond extract. Finally I folded in 100g ground almonds and 100g self raising flour.

I spooned a jar of mincemeat over the part baked pastry. I always use a good quality mincemeat and one with brandy or cognac in it because I think it tastes nicest, or you can make your own, Waitrose have a good recipe for it.

I gently spooned the sponge over the top and spread it out. I sprinkled over some toasted flaked almonds.

I baked on 160C/325F/Gas Mark 3 for 35 minutes until it was a lovely golden brown.

When it was fully cool I mixed 2 heaped tbsp icing sugar with water and piped it over the sponge in a zig zag pattern.

The squares were really delicious and certainly improved by the good quality mincemeat - hello brandy! I was really pleased with them and so were my colleagues, I got a lot of good feedback. Although sadly the colleague these were aimed at was off sick today. Fingers crossed she is better and back in tomorrow as I have saved her one! They are certainly an interesting twist on mince pies and a great way to feel festive.

print recipe

Mince Pie Bakewell Squares
  • 300g Butter
  • 225g Plain flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp Cold water
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 200g Golden caster sugar
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Brandy
  • 1/2 tsp Almond extract
  • 100g Self raising flour
  • 100g Ground almonds
  • 1 jar of Mincemeat
  • A handful of Toasted flaked almonds
  • 2 heaped tbsp Icing sugar
Start by making the pastry. Rub 100g of the butter into the plain flour and salt. Add the cold water and bring the mixture together to form a dough. Wrap it in cling film and chill for 30 minutes in the fridgeRoll the pastry out to fit a lined and greased baking tin and prick it with a fork. Chill it again for 20 minutes, then bake it on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for 10 minutesTo make the sponge cream 200g of the butter and the golden caster sugar together. Whisk in the eggs, brandy and almond extract. Fold in the ground almonds and self raising flourSpoon a jar of mincemeat over the part baked pastry baseGently spoon the sponge over the top and spread it out. Sprinkle over the toasted flaked almondsBake on 160C/325F/Gas Mark 3 for 35 minutes until it is a lovely golden brownWhen fully cool, mix the icing sugar with some water and pipe it over the sponge in a zig zag pattern


  1. These are a great twist on the traditional mince pies for Christmas. I hope your colleague gets to try them as I'm sure she will be impressed!

    1. Thank you! They went down really well at work, such a shame she was ill. Will have to make them again :)

  2. They look lovely, I can almost taste them! I am so in agreement with you about the mincemeat... though never understood why it was called mincemeat... really put me off when I was younger, even though I loved it!

    1. Apparently it's because they used to actually have meat in them! That's what I've heard anyway.

  3. I've only just learned to love mincemeat in the past few years. I would now love these!

    1. It's so delicious, glad to hear you like it now :)

  4. Snap! I've just posted something really similar! Tastes fab!

  5. That looks absolutely gorgeous, I'm going to make some of these.