Star-Topped Mince Pies

It would not be Christmas with Mince Pies and these are some of the best!

240g plain flour (scant 2 cups)
120g butter, cold and cubed (8 1/2 tbs.)
juice of 1 orange
pinch of salt
approx. 350g mincemeat (3/4 cup)
icing sugar for dusting

Toss together the flour and the cubed butter and set it aside in the freezer for 20 minutes. Place the orange juice in the fridge for the same about of time. After 20 minutes, place the flour/butter mixture and the salt in the food processor and blitz to a porridge-like crumble. Pour in the orange juice through the feeding tube, pulsing until it just begins to come together. If you run out of orange juice, use cold water. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and use your hands to bring it into a dough. Divide into three flat discs, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes, or overnight.

Heat the oven to 425°F. Roll out the first disc as thinly as possible, but dense enough to support the mincemeat. Using a fluted cutter, cut out circles and gently press into mince pie tins. (You may have to do this in batches of three if you only have one mince pie tin.) Spoon in a teaspoon or so of mincemeat into each. Cut out stars and gently place on top.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, keeping an eye on them as oven temperatures greatly vary. Remove from the tins and set on a wire rack to cool. If you are working in batches, let the tin cool down between.

Dust with icing sugar and serve with brandy butter.

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