Mincemeat, Christmas Puddings and Christmas Cakes

(9 Posts)
Scout19075 Fri 11-Jul-14 10:45:46

I'm an American living in England I should know the answer to my question. But sadly I haven't a clue.

Can I make and take my own mincemeat (and possibly puddings and/or cake) into the US without any problems?

Last year, when the immigration officer asked about food, I declared SmallBoy's snacks (though forgot to mention his box of SunMaid California raisins), the weird flavored crisps and the cookies/biscuits. I forgot to declare the homemade alcohol (fruit flavored brandies, sloe gin and fruit flavored gins). He asked me if I had any fruit in SmallBoy's snacks (I recall him asking "Any bananas, apples, that sort of thing?") which I didn't, just the above forgotten about box of raisins.

Sadly the US Immigration page hasn't clarified the situation for me. Does anyone know if I can? Has anyone done so?

I want to take mincemeat over to make mincepies for family and friends as we visit (as a little bit of Britain to add to their Thanksgiving and Christmas festivities) but know from past experience that the longer I can let them steep the nicer they are (so making the mincemeat the day after we land doesn't give it time to stew if we start seeing people that day).

Whether I can or not will affect how many batches of mincemeat I make.

Scout19075 Sat 19-Jul-14 12:52:42

Shameless bump.

Anyone?

tacal Sat 19-Jul-14 14:23:32

I don't know. Hopefully someone will come along soon who will know the answer.

It will be lovely if you can make mince pies for your friends and family.

Can you ask someone in the USA to make the mincemeat for you then you make the mincemeat pies when you get there?
Delias recipe is tres straightforward and involves mixing, steeping, warming in the oven then jarring up.

My DSis lives in New Zealand and I know they are really strict on what can go to and from.

No help I'm afraid sad

SquattingNeville Sat 19-Jul-14 19:46:11

From reading the US customs website I can't see them having a problem with you taking homemade mincemeat. Might be better not to not call it mincemeat when you're travelling though, seeing as it's not something that America does, so customs officials may not understand that it doesn't actually contain any meat products (something which they don't allow).

They will have asked about fruit previously because their acceptance of fresh fruit and vegetables depends on a number of factors, not limited to where you are travelling from and the risk of that fruit/veg introducing a non-native pest.

Here is the comprehensive list on the US customs website of what isn't allowed.

Scout19075 Thu 24-Jul-14 22:16:38

Thanks, all. I found the US Customs website unclear. Any ideas what I could call mincemeat that isn't, well, mincemeat?

MrsCK Fri 25-Jul-14 11:14:02

How about raising pie filling? Or something similar?

MsVenus Sat 26-Jul-14 03:36:05

Fruit compote/jam/pie filling as possible descriptions

goodbyeyellowbrickroad Sat 26-Jul-14 04:13:23

I don't know about homemade mincemeat but my parents got shop bought mincemeat through US customs last year with no problems. They also got vegetarian suet through but the customs officer did double check it was veggie and not beef suet as that wouldn't have been allowed.

On the fruit front, we got send through extra screening a couple of months ago when we entered the US as we had a banana on us (DS snack). We've declared the same thing before and never been through additional screening so perhaps they're being more vigilant.

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