Diane Prather: A request for beef mincemeat
February 20, 2010
Gloria Noland, of Craig, called me this past weekend. She is looking for a recipe for pemmican (pemican), specifically the way the Native Americans made it. Gloria said it is made with dried meat and berries. So if anyone has a recipe or knows where she can get one, please contact me.
Gloria and I also chatted about recipes for making mincemeat. I remember my mother making mincemeat pies for Christmas and Thanksgiving. I think she made the mincemeat with beef or venison, but I think some mincemeat is made without meat. I'm not a mincemeat fan myself so if anyone knows anything about it, please call or write to me.
In the meantime, I came across a "Beef Mincemeat" recipe when I was browsing through the "Cattlemen's Favorite Beef Recipes" pamphlet put out in 1957 by the Colorado Cowbelles. This particular recipe makes 2 gallons of mincemeat so that it can be frozen. (It takes 2 cups to make a 9-inch pie.)
So here it is, Gloria — and for anyone else who would like to make mincemeat pie.
To make "Beef Mincemeat", you'll need 2 1/2 pounds of lean beef, cooked and ground (an inexpensive shoulder cut. And look at all of the other ingredients: 1 cup ground suet; 2 cups beef broth; 3 pounds raisins; 2 pounds currants; 3 whole lemons, ground; 2 whole oranges, ground; 1 quart sour cherries, chopped and juice added; 1 cup chopped nuts; 1 quart apple cider or juice; 1 cup brown sugar; 2 cups white sugar; 1 cup prune juice or any sweet juice from canned fruit; 1 cup honey or molasses or equal parts of both; 2 tablespoons salt; 1 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground; 2 teaspoons nutmeg; 3 teaspoons cinnamon; 2 teaspoons cloves; 2 teaspoons allspice; 2 teaspoons mace; and 4 pounds chopped apples. Whew!
Mix thoroughly. Bring mixture to a slow boil and allow to cool slowly. Store in a large crock for several days, in a cool place. Then put in jars for the freezer or refrigerator. Makes about 2 gallons. Mincemeat should age at least a month in the refrigerator for best flavor. (Note: This is an old recipe. To follow today's food safety rules, store the crock, referred to in the second sentence, in the refrigerator.)
To make a pie, put a crust in a pie plate and fill with 2 cups of mincemeat to which 1 cup of fresh, chopped apples has been added. Put a crust on top. This makes a generous 9-inch pie.
This recipe was contributed to the Cowbelle pamphlet by Dick Goff, of the Mile-Hi Cowbelles.
If you have information about mincemeat or mincemeat recipes, j0call me at 824-8809 or write to me at P.O. Box 415, Craig, CO 81626. And don't forget about the pemmican.
Copyright Diane Prather, 2010.