You can buy mincemeat in jars- but it’s much more satisfying to make your own. It’s also very easy, and good for using up half-eaten bags of dried fruit that you don’t know what to do with, but that you can’t quite bring yourself to throw away.
The dried fruit and peel can include anything you’d like- currants, raisins, sultanas, cranberries- even mango, apricot, barberries and goji berries would work. I would recommend, though, that you include at least 150g of mixed peel and 300g of currants, raisins or sultanas. The choice of nuts is also up to you.
800g mixed dried fruit and peel
100g chopped nuts
150g butter, chopped up
225 dark brown sugar
Pinch mixed spice
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
150ml of brandy or sherry
Gently heat all of the ingredients, apart from the booze, in a big pan until the butter has melted. Let it cool and stir in the alcohol. Spoon into sterilised jars. It keeps well, if you’re not planning to use it straight away.