a food processor, place the flour, salt, and sugar and process until
combined. Add the cold butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse
crumbs (about 15 seconds). Sprinkle about 3 tablespoons of ice water over
the pastry and process just until the pastry holds together when pinched. Add
a little more water, if necessary.
Turn the dough onto your work surface and gather into a ball.
Divide the pastry in half, flatten
each half into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30
- 60 minutes, or until firm.
(This will chill the butter and
relax the gluten in the flour.)
Preheat your oven to
400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Have ready a 24 mini muffin tin
(preferably non stick).
After the pastry has chilled sufficiently,
take one of the disks of pastry, and place on a lightly floured surface.
Roll out each round of
pastry until it's about 1/8 inch thick. Using a round cookie cutter that's
slightly bigger than the muffin cups, cut the pastry into 24 rounds. (To prevent the
pastry from sticking to the counter and to ensure uniform thickness, keep
lifting up and turning the pastry a quarter turn as you roll (always roll from
the center of the pastry outwards).) Gently
place the rounds into the muffin cups and top with a heaping teaspoon of
mincemeat. Gather up any leftover
scraps of pastry and re roll. Cut out 24 stars or other shapes using a small
cookie cutter, and gently place the stars on top of the mincemeat. If
desired, brush the tops of the stars with a little cream and sprinkle with granulated
sugar. Bake for about 10 - 15
minutes or until the pastry has lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool
on a wire rack. If desired, dust the Mince Pies with powdered sugar before
serving. Serve warm, at room temperature or cold. These tarts freeze very
Makes 24 - 2 inch (5 cm) tarts.