Savouring pies from past

York Press: Lucy Knock, assistant curator of history learning at the Castle Museum in York, samples a traditional mince pie, one of a selection from earlier eras which were available for visitors to try this week Lucy Knock, assistant curator of history learning at the Castle Museum in York, samples a traditional mince pie, one of a selection from earlier eras which were available for visitors to try this week

WHENEVER I read of “Tudor” mince pies made with beef (The Press, December 17), I recall a mince pie recipe from my mother’s hand-written recipe book. This called for steak as an ingredient for the filling.

The pastry was made with lard, which was not uncommon even at a much later period.

Once, in a complaisant mood, my mother baked some for my benefit. I thought them delicious. She told me that she had the recipe from her father, who baked and sold such pies at the beginning of the 20th century.

I can’t believe that he was the only baker in England at that time selling mince pies containing beef. Evidently the tradition lingered on until, perhaps, extinguished by the privations of the First World War.

I wonder what our forefathers would have thought of the sugary goo contained in so many modern mince pies?

William Dixon Smith, Welland Rise, Acomb, York.

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