JERUSALEM MINCE PIES

A variation on the traditional mince pies made with fruit mince. These ones have more of a Middle Eastern taste.

Makes 36 pies
Preparation time: 20 min
Baking time: 12-15 min

FILLING
250 ml (1 c) dried apricots
180 ml (2/3 chopped dates
Sugar to taste (optional)
250 ml (1 c) Carmién cherry orange rooibos tea & Carmién chia rooibos tea (2 bags each)
15 ml (1 T) brandy
80 ml (1/3 c) chopped almonds
PASTRY
250 g ice-cold butter, cubed
250 ml (1 c) icing sugar
500 ml (2 c) cake flour
80 ml (1/3 c) corn flour

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Spray a few baking sheets with spray ‘n cook.
1 FILLING Place the dried fruit in a pot, add the rooibos tea, brandy and sugar if needed and cook till soft and most of the tea has evaporated. Cool and chop finely. Add the almonds.
2 PASTRY Place all the ingredients for the pastry in a food processor and process till well blended. Remove from the food processor, form in a ball, cover in cling wrap and refrigerate till firm.
3 Roll out till about 4 mm thick and cut out circles, 7 cm in diameter.
4 Place 5—10 ml (1—2 t) filling in the centre of each circle of dough. Fold up the edges on three sides to create a triangular biscuit with the filling visible in the centre. Arrange on the baking sheets.
5 Bake about 15 minutes or until golden, the biscuit will still be soft. Leave for 10 minutes to cool on the baking sheets. Then transfer to a rack to cool completely. Store in airtight containers. Dust with icing sugar before serving with tea.

Carmen Niehaus, Food Editor, Huisgenoot & YOU