Cumberland rum nicky

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • For



Appears in

Oats in the North, Wheat from the South: The history of British Baking, savoury and sweet

Oats in the North, Wheat from the South

By Regula Ysewijn

Published 2020

  • About

Cumberland rum nicky is a shortcrust pastry filled with dried and candied fruits soaked in rum – you could say it is a giant mince pie. The tart tells the story of the trade in sugar, spirits, spices and fruits between the Caribbean and Northern England in the 18th century. Unfortunately, it also tells the story of the slave trade on sugar plantations.


For the shortcrust pastry

  • 250 g (9 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 100 g ( oz) icing (confectioners’) sugar
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 125 g ( oz) chilled butter, diced
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • butter, for greasing
  • flour, for dusting
  • 1 egg yolk + 1 tbsp milk, for egg wash

For the filling


For a 22 cm (8½ inch) pie plate

Make the shortcrust pastry by combining the flour, sugar, salt and butter in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse for 8 seconds or until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and water and pulse again until the dough forms a ball in the bowl. Remove from the bowl and knead briefly. Wrap the pastry in plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 190°C (375°F).

Butter the pie plate and dust with flour. Thinly roll out half of the pastry on a floured work surface and place in the pie plate. Cut away the excess pastry and brush the rim of the pastry with the egg wash. Roll out the remaining pastry.

Spoon the mincemeat into the pastry base. Lay the second piece of pastry on top and cut away the excess. Crimp the edges well or use a pastry stamp and decorate with the left-over pastry.

Brush the top of the pie with the egg wash and bake in the middle of the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Serve as it is or with custard.