The Husband has headed off on his plane to Saudi for most of the week. He was up at 5.30, and given that we didn't get in till about 1 this morning after a very fun dinner party, I wasn't particularly in the mood for doing anything much today. However, where there are children and dogs, there is always activity to be undertaken. Blue needed depositing at a friend's house for another birthday party (hot on the heels of his own outing yesterday), and the dog needed a walk, so we dug ourselves out of the house, ran some errands, dropped off Blue, and picked up a friend for Pink on the way back, all before 9.30. More sympathy please.
Pink and her friend immediately ensconsed themselves playing some wonderful game involving barbies and the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. I put on a pot of coffee and flicked on Radio 4. The Archers Omnibus. Joy. Rather than succumb to my tiredness and sink into a torpor, I decided to make some mincemeat - it is 'stir up Sunday' after all, I've already made my cake, and the pudding is the Husband's job, whether he's in Saudi or not (I'll let him make it when he gets back)
This is very easy and tastes delicious. If you think making mincemeat might be difficult, it really isn't and it does taste nicer than shop bought (I would say that, I know). There's something very soothing to me about pottering around in the kitchen preparing something like this - something that has been made in one form or another for years,
Cherry & Almond Mincemeat
makes about 3 jars (may be a little more)
4 cooking apples
350g soft light brown sugar
zest and juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon
1tsp ground cinammon,amd 1/4 tsp each ground nutmeg, ground cloves and groun all spice
100g glace cherries, chopped quite finely
300g raisins/sultanas/currants - today I used 150g raisins &150g currrants
100g flaked almonds
100g shredded vegetarian suet
Measure the sugar into a large pan, and add the citrus zests and juices. Peel & core the apples, then grate into the pan. Bring this gently to a simmer, stirring until the sugar has melted, then turn off the heat and stir in the spices, dried fruit and the brandy. Set aside to cool. Sterilise your jars, then when the mixture is cool, stir in the suet and almonds, put into jars, seal, and store till needed.
When I tweeted earlier today that I was making mincemeat, I got a tweet back from someone asking if I was using actual meat in it. Obviously, as you'll have gathered from the above, I wasn't but I am intrigued - has anyone made mincemeat with meat in it? Thanks to google, I have found this really funny post about it here and I'm quite tempted. What do you think?