- Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4. Make the pastry by mixing all the ingredients together, then kneading a few times. Roll into a ball, cover with cling film and place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix the mincemeat with the grated apple, carrot, sunflower seeds and mixed spice.
- Roll out the pastry, cut into rounds and line a 12-cup shallow bun tin.
- Add the mincemeat mixture to the pastry cases so they are three-quarters full, then bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the oven and allow to cool on a rack.
- Prepare the toppings (see ingredient list), squeezing lemon juice over the apple and pear to stop browning.
- Just before serving, garnish the pies with a variety of the topping ingredients: wedge of fresh fig and a walnut: 1 tsp apple or pear, plus a cherry: a few flaked toasted almonds with orange zest, or any combination you like – use your imagination!
- For a citrus zing, try adding the grated zest of an orange or lemon to the mincemeat.
- You can also add ground cinnamon, nutmeg or ginger in place of mixed spice.
- Freezing instructions: Defrost for 2 hours to serve, or defrost in the microwave or a moderate oven.