Fig, apple and walnut mincemeat with Calvados

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Howard's suet-free mincemeat is simple and quick to achieve, packed with figs, raisins, walnuts and apple.

First published in 2015

This suet-free mincemeat is a great way of trying out unusual liqueurs . . . or using up the leftovers. Here I cooked the fruit in elderberry port, then added Calvados (apple brandy) at the end, but anything similar will do the job.

A word about mixed spice – supermarket fare usually consists of some combination of cinnamon, coriander, ginger and cloves, but venture further afield and you'll find star anise, cardamom and many more. Try independent shops or use a spice grinder and create your own blend.

Recipe taken from Howard Middleton's book Delicious Gluten-Free Baking published by Little, Brown.





Pour the port into a large pan. Place the pan over a low heat, add the sugar and wait for it to dissolve
Stir in the apple, figs, raisins, currants and mixed spice. Bring to a vigorous simmer and leave for around 15 minutes to allow the apple to soften and the liquid to be absorbed by the dry ingredients
Add the walnuts and date syrup, stir until thoroughly combined. Remove the pan from the heat and pour in the majority of the Calvados
Add the mixture to a sterilised jar and leave to cool before adding the rest of the Calvados, sealing with a tight fitting lid

Howard is a food writer and presenter from Sheffield, who first caught the public’s attention on series four of The Great British Bake Off, going on to win their affection with his quirky style and love of unusual ingredients.

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