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Our Fabulously Good Mincemeat
From Delights and Prejudices, by James Beard


3 lb lean beef brisket or rump
3 lb fresh beef tongue
1-1/2 lb suet, finely chopped
2 lb Muscat raisins
2 lb seedless white raisins
2 lb dried currants
1/2 lb candied citron peel, cut into thin shreds
1/2 lb candied orange peel, cut into thin shreds
1/4 lb candied lemon peel, cut into thin shreds
1/2 lb dried figs or pitted dates, chopped (optional)
2 cups sugar
2 cups strawberry jam
1 Tbsp salt
2 tsp grated nutmeg
2-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground mace
1/2 tsp ground cloves
3-1/4 cups sherry
about 1-1/2 quarts Cognac


Cover the beef and the tongue with water, and cook them over low heat until tender, about two and one half to three hours. Cool the meats, peel and trim the tongue, and put the meats through the coarse disk of a food grinder or chop them by hand. In a deep crock, combine the meats with all of the remaining ingredients, adding enough Cognac to make a rather loose mixture of the fruits and meats. Mix the ingredients thoroughly, cover the crock, and let the mincemeat stand for a month or so before using it.

Check the mincemeat each week to see if absorption necessitates adding more sherry or Cognac, or both.

Yield: To make about 8 quarts [8 liters]

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