Mince pies and free the nipple!

When I first moved to the UK as a twenty-year-old I was puzzled by the mince pie. Why were they eating meat for dessert? I thought a mince pie contained beef mince rather than fruit and nuts. Now I’m a little more cultured than I was then, although not by much, and I’ve got a good recipe for mince pies which I want to share. It’s vegan too!


1/2 cup flaked almonds
1/4 cup raw sugar
1 cup currants
1 grated green apple
Finely grated skin from one orange
100g vegetarian suet
1 tbsp cointreau
1 tsp cinnamon
vegan shortcrust pastry (obviously you can use the fatty, buttery stuff if you prefer, but this is healthier and less sickening)

Mix all the ingredients up together (except for the pastry). Roll the pastry out and cut into circles. I don’t have any special equipment for this as I’m currently without all my kitchen stuff: it’s on a ship somewhere between New Zealand and Auckland. So I rolled the pastry out with a glass and then used the glass to cut circles. Place teaspoons full of the mixture on one circle and use a second circle as the lid. Seal the edges by pressing them together with a fork. Bake in a moderate oven for about 15 minutes.

This has nothing to do with mince pies but a blogging friend, PhoTrablogger, told me about this campaign to “free the nipple” (there’s a good post about it here) and this is as good a place as any to share it. I think there’s something very unhealthy about a society that promotes images of violence while punishing nudity. Facebook used to have a very strange censorship policy where videos of beheadings were ok but images of breastfeeding in which a nipple or part-of were visible, was banned. I think they might have gone some way to rectify this or so it seems from this article, Facebook changes breastfeeding mothers photo policy. Don’t get me wrong, I have no desire to walk around naked or topless – it’s too cold for a start – but there must be other things worth policing than a bit of a nipple. From the Huffington Post article –

Of equal importance to gender-based hate was the issue of the context in which content passes moderation. As a reflection of the world’s culture, Facebook continues to be a place in which depictions of women as sexually objectified (overt pornography violates community standards) or debased is broadly allowable, but others, in which women represent their own bodies for non male-gaze sexual pleasure, is largely not.