Christmas creeps up, doesn’t it? Hopefully, I’ve not left these Mincemeat Christmas Buns until too close to the big day. If you’ve got time on your hands, these are a surprisingly simple-to-make festive treat that the whole family will – probably – enjoy.
To make these Christmas Buns, I took the base ingredients and method of my recent recipe for cinnamon buns (worth a look if you missed them), replaced the cinnamon with mixed spice and threw in a healthy dollop of mincemeat for good measure.
As a result, these are certainly on the more decadent side of the bun spectrum. But it’s Christmas, right? And what’s Christmas without a little decadence?
There are two ways of baking these buns – you can bake them individually in muffin tins (20-minute bake), or you can bake them together pull-apart style (35-minute bake). My personal preference is for an individual bun – the result is a little better and more presentable.
Baking them together increases the risk of an undercooked bun in the middle and overcooked buns on the outside. Plus, it gives the mincemeat more of a chance to soak into the dough, somewhat… dampening the end-product. Try both methods and see what you prefer.
If these don’t do it for you, or you need even more Christmas inspiration, you might like my recipes for Christmas Spiced Biscuits, Eccles Cake Mince Pies, Marzipan Mince Pies, Leftover Mincemeat Apple Crumble and Mince Pie Cake…
Mincemeat Christmas Buns
For the buns
- 100g salted butter
- 200ml whole milk
- A pinch of salt
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 500g strong white flour
- 7g fast-action yeast
- 50g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
For the filling
- 350g mincemeat
- 2 oranges, zested
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 1 egg, beaten
- 50g demerara sugar
- 50g caster sugar
- Gently warm the milk and salted butter in a pan until the latter has melted. Set aside to cool a little. Bring together the flour, salt, yeast, mixed spice and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
- Crack the eggs into a well in the centre of the flour. Pour in the milk mixture and incorporate all of the flour until you have a soft, sticky dough.
- Turn the dough out onto a surface. Don’t use flour – to begin with, your hands will get sticky. Knead the dough for 10 minutes, by which point you should have a soft ball of dough that no longer sticks to your hands.
- Place the dough into a clean mixing bowl, cover and leave in a warm place for an hour, or until it has doubled in size.
- Once risen, turn your dough out onto a clean surface, knock it back and roll out into a rectangle roughly 40x30cm in size.
- Spread the mincemeat evenly across the dough, leaving an inch along one long side uncoated. Sprinkle the zest of two oranges evenly across the mincemeat, press down gently and top with a heaped teaspoon of mixed spice.
- Brush the uncoated strip of dough with a little water. Roll up the dough tightly beginning with the fully-coated long edge. Pinch the seam closed once fully rolled up.
- Trim 2cm off each end of the rolled-up dough. Slice the remainder into 12 rolls each 3cm wide. Grease a muffin tin with butter, place the rolls into the tin swirl-side up. Cover once more and set aside to rise for 45 minutes.
- Pre-heat your oven to 220C/200C fan. Brush each roll with a little beaten egg, dust generously with mixed spice, and sprinkle even more generously with demerara sugar.
- Bake the rolls for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Dissolve the caster sugar in 4 tbsp warm water. Brush the resulting syrup over the buns while cooling on a wire rack. They are best eaten the same day or frozen once cool.
Cost: These Christmas Buns are a little more costly to make than the cinnamon buns that came before them. How much more will depend on the levels of luxury you afford your mincemeat purchase. But unless you’re going for top-end gear, these shouldn’t be more than about £3.50 per dozen.