Sainsbury’s Get Involved in this Mince Pie War to End all Mince Pie Wars (It’ll be over by Christmas)

I hereby present Sainsbury’s with the award for best looking pie. Very dainty details. Good job everyone involved.

As for the taste? Not that memorable. But not as bad as Marks and Sparks. Obviously.

How do M&S fare in the battle of mince pies?

These Marks and Sparks mince pies are a bit of a let down to be honest. They say all-butter on them, but that isn’t very evident from the taste. The recommended time they have to put them in the oven is too long, so the mincemeat was too hot. They look alright, with a simple incision in the top to give that old-school look, but I think that’s what leads them to let all the heat in an burn my tongue. Sibyl said too much mincemeat too. Oh dear Marks and Sparks.

What burns our thighs, wets your butt and strikes fear into their children?

Slides in kids parks / playgrounds were a hit and miss affair. In the summer they were too hot to go down, burn the back of your bare thighs. Rainy days obviously make them off-limits, many a wet butt was experienced. But the right conditions could make them especially enjoyable.

Sometimes they took the risk factor a bit too far with those slides in yer Wacky Warehouse type zones where there was a literal vertical drop pre-slide, which added significant velocity, but the fear, oh the fear before making the plunge. Always worth it though, especially with the ball-pool ecstasy which it was followed by.

What are the latest developments on my mince pie tasting endeavours?

Good news first. I’ve found my favourite so far. Waitrose strikes back. These little all butter ones. Pack of twelve. Amazing pastry. My Mama-in-law bought me those.

Before those I was bought other really posh fully organic ones! They were great for a home-made taste.

Then there was the other end of the spectrum, the most commercially lucrative cake company out there… Mr. Kipling of course. Why he stopped writing the Jungle Books I don’t know, those ones aren’t really recommended, bog-standard, tasty, nice pictures on it them too, of two turtle doves too.

Why are the London Underground Pro-Life?

Even Kate’s Got One!

I saw a woman today as I was strolling my son to Sainsbury’s and she looked at me merrily and I wondered whether there was a particular reason and my question was answered by a badge she was wearing. Have you seen them? Expectant Mothers who may not be visibly pregnant are given these badges so that people will give up their seats for them. What do the badges say? ‘Baby On Board’ of course! Yes, Transport for London are clearly of the opinion that a woman carrying an unborn child — no matter how for along — is carrying a BABY. The badge does not say ‘foetus on board’ or ‘potential offspring on board’. What a lovely smile she gave me.

What am I mincing my words with?

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Pies of course!

I’ve tried three types so far. First of the year were the Sainsbury’s brand. They were a great opener. Crumbly pastry; sugar-covered; good raisin ratio etc. your classic mince pie.

Then I tried Aberystwyth Spar’s version, whilst on a visit back to the Motherland. They had more of a homemade feel. But I was outraged with my friends for not owning a microwave that I could quickly zap them in to get that required warmth. So that ruined things a little.

Most exciting were purchased this week. From Waitrose. They’re branded with a certain Blumenthal brand. They look like pork pies — and you wouldn’t put it past him to actually put pork in them. They’re very very heavily spiced. And I chucked ‘em in the oven. And there’s orange flavoured dusting sugar to sprinkle on top. (See above picture). Tasted really Christmassy. Would be disappointed if these were the only mince pies in existence, but as an exciting alternative, yule have to agree they’re very nice.

Much more fun to be had this holiday season. I heard Iceland topped one poll as the best mince pie. What are your recommendations?