Mincemeat – the single most misunderstood word during the holidays. I blame it on whoever came up with that name. I mean really, minced meat?? Who wants to eat that?! However, I’m here to tell you to give it a try and you might be pleasantly surprised. I was at World Market the other day leisurely strolling the holiday aisles while the kiddos were at school (so for once, I was able to really look at the unique goods!) Lo and behold, a glass jar labeled “mincemeat” caught my eye and after reading the label to determine that there really was NOT meat in it, I decided what the heck, I’ll try something new this year!
So, let’s talk about Mincemeat and what exactly it is. From researching, I know there are different kinds and some people apparently do put real ground meat into their pie, but most commonly the kind you will find in stores does NOT have meat in it. My picture above got a little blurry, so if you can’t make out the ingredients, it has dried apples, currants, sultanas, raisins, candied orange and lemon peels, cinnamon, dill, coriander, fennel, cloves, ginger, nutmeg, and cassia. Standing in the World Market aisle reading the label made me think of a delicious hot mulled cider and all the rich, spicy flavors of winter. Mmmmm…..now the big question was what to do with it?!?
After much researching and reading recipe after recipe, I landed on Mincemeat Cookies. They looked unique from all the other cookies I was making this season and would be pretty on cookie trays ~ hopefully they would taste good, too! I’ll start off describing this recipe by saying it was not exactly an easy cookie to make – nothing weird with the ingredients, but it was definitely a process. It’s really important you chill the dough, and even then, it’s super sticky. You’ll need lots of extra flour to coat the parchment paper and your rolling pin!
After chilling the dough, roll it into as much of a large square as possible so it will be easier to cut into smaller square pieces. My squares were about 2.5″, and yes, they do need to be perfect squares or your cookie will end up a wonky shape! I’ve got a few of those 🙂
When filling the cookies, you’ll want to use a heaping teaspoon of mincemeat. This was a good amount that didn’t run off the cookie while baking. Place the mincemeat right in the center of the cookie and spread it out a bit.
Fold opposite corners of dough over the filling to create a cute little bundle of mincemeat. It looks like the cookie is hugging its filling 🙂 Some of the squares with extra flour had a hard time sticking together, so I rubbed a little of the sticky filling on the dough corners before sticking together.
And that’s it! A little bit of extra work compared to just dropping a spoonful of dough on a cookie sheet, but it was a great intro to mincemeat. If you have a free afternoon, give this cookie a try, and maybe you’ll become a fan of mincemeat like me!
- 1/2 cup of butter
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/4 cups mincemeat
- Cream butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Add in flour and baking powder. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and put in refrigerator for at least an hour.
- Once chilled, roll dough between two sheets of well-floured parchment or wax paper. Cut into 2 1/2 inch squares.
- Place a heaping teaspoon of mincemeat in the center of a square and fold over opposite corners.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until edges are slightly browned.
- Serve dusted with a little powdered sugar. Enjoy!