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Name:DEANS GUILD MINCEMEAT Contributor:Diana Tracy
Description:mincemeat - authentic with real meat Posted:2008-12-06
Key words:suet meat Christmas Category:Desserts
ID:867 Updated:2008-12-06 12:49:49
Ingredients:4 1/2 lbs lean beef or game, cooked and ground (in that order)
6 cups cider
3 cups cider vinegar
11 cups (5 1/2 lbs) sugar
3 1/2 pints chopped tart apples (nicer if peeled but not necessary)
2 cups ground suet
4 cups seeded raisins (you can get by without this, but it's less authentic, or you can buy seeded Muscat raisins from sunmaid via the net)
2 cups seedless raisins
2 cups currants
1 cup finely chopped candied orange rind
1 cup finely chopped candied lemon rind
1 cup chopped citron (more than this is even better...think substitute for those pesky seeded raisins; double this and add more seedless raisins and currants)
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
Preparation:Mix together all ingredients and store in stone crocks; covered tightly. Dip out as ready to use, or spoon into jars to present as gifts (not on yer tintype, buddy!). Stored in a cold place, mincemeat keeps splendidly for a long period of months. Yield: 2 1/1 gallons

What I do: I crock store it in the fridge for about 3 weeks, then divvy it up into pie-sized servings and store it in plastic bags in the freezer. This stuff is far richer than anything we eat nowadays, and you can add chopped apples to the mix before baking to thin it out, as it were. It does like to age some and improves a great deal with 3 weeks of storage (not to say that it's bad right out of the box, but it is BETTER after storage.
Notes:Back when I was a little kid, I remember my relies talking about the fact that there was BLACK PEPPER in the mix; they were wowed by the exoticness of that.

And when we didn't make our own, we ordered Bradley's pies mincemeat from the local pie restaurant (and I married the son of the bakery owner). Turns out dad was trophy-hunting for moose in canada in those years, and was pretty successful. When he came home it tended to be with 1500 lbs of Very Tough Moosemeat, and I have it on pretty good authority just where that moose meat went....so I'm here to tell you that moose mincemeat is exceedingly lovely.

Seeded raisins are from grapes with seeds, as opposed to seedless grapes like Thompsons. Usta be that most grapes had seeds, and there were several varieties of "seeded" raisins. The most common seeded raisin is from the Muscat grape, which dries into a sticky, gooey, Very Sweet (think Muscat wine...)mess. Older recipes (my mincemeat and carrot pudding recipe) call for them. Up until about 15 years ago, you could usually find them alongside the golden raisins (they were in a blue box) at least at Christmas time. Almost all raisins are made from seedless grapes, now.

Mincemeat is OK without them, but I despaired to ever find a decent substitute for the carrot pudding. My dad used to go on pilgrimages around the old ma and pa grocery stores and buy up the old boxes for the pudding...I finally ran out about 7 or 8 years ago, and serched the web for them then. The only ones I could find were from Italy, and I coulda just dropped my pearls into the pudding for their price. Then on a whim this year, I looked again. SunMaid still makes and produces them and I only had to by 5 lbs of them at one time! They keep in the freezer juuust fine, so I'm set for carrot puddings for the next few years. I imagine that they didn't have a website up lo those many years ago when I looked before.

DLT (looking in my mom's recipe book makes me tres nostalgic)

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