Nothing beats a mince pie at Christmas and these mini tarts are the perfect size for hungry toddlers
1. In a large mixing bowl, lightly beat butter and sugar with a wooden spoon until a light creamy consistency. Add the egg, vanilla and lemon zest and mix until combined. Add flour and mix to a paste. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
2. Put all filling ingredients through a mincer or finely chop. Ensuring that all ingredients are well combined. Place in a clean airtight container and seal.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry into a sheet about 3mm thick. Using a 6.5cm round cutter, cut out 24 bases to line two mini muffin trays. Gently press pastry inside the muffin cups to avoid any cracking around the bases.
3. Using a round or star-shaped cutter, cut 24 tart tops from remaining rolled pastry and set aside. Reserve any pastry scraps. Mould, wrap and place back into the freezer for later use.
4. Using a teaspoon, fill each pastry-lined case to just below the rim with the filling (approximately 30g each). Lightly brush or spray edge of the pastry cases with water. Place round tops over filling, pressing slightly around edges to seal tops to the bottom, or, if using star-shaped tops, place them in the middle of the filling. If desired, lightly glaze tops with egg wash.
5. Bake in a preheated 180C (gas mark 4) oven for 15 minutes or until light golden-brown. Sprinkle with caster sugar, if wished, while tarts are still hot. Allow to cool a little, then remove from trays and store in an airtight container.
This recipe is taken from Pie by Dean Brettschneider (£25, Jacqui Small Publishing)