I have been making my own mincemeat for more than 30 years. It tastes so much better than most of the shop-bought ones and is definitely worth the effort. The fruit becomes glossy and almost jewel like with the addition of the brandy and lime juice. I use it in mince pies and also add a couple of tablespoons to an apple crumble for an interesting twist. It also tastes excellent when used to stuff baked apples – just remember to score the apple to stop it exploding!
It contains dried apricots as well as raisins, sultanas and currants and I use vegetable suet which makes it ok for vegetarians but unfortunately not for those on a gluten-free diet. I can make it gluten-free but that would be using beef suet so not vegetarian. It lasts well (at least 9 months) if kept in the fridge once opened.