Monthly Archives: December 2012

My Little Christmas Pies

The mince pies are cooked

And they’re ready to eat.

The kitchen is warm,

And the smell, you can’t beat!


Little Christmas Pies

Another one of my favourite things about Christmas, making my little Christmas pies. This recipe was given to me by  Sue Bridger, who I met when I enrolled on a short cookery course at my local college more than thirty years ago. It was Sue who encouraged me to get my City and Guilds Cooks Professional qualification and then go on to get a teaching certificate. Some years later I took another teaching qualification that allowed me to branch out and that’s how I ended up teaching young people with learning difficulties. Anyway, I digress!

These little mince pies are made with a sweet short crust pastry base and topped with a piped Viennese topping. The topping means that the pies are lovely and light (so you have an excuse to eat more than one).

Here is the recipe if you want to have a go;



8 oz/230g plain flour

4 oz/115g butter

1 egg yolk, mixed with a little cold water

2 oz/60g caster sugar

Good quality mincemeat with a little brandy added

Viennese topping;

8 oz/200g soft tub margarine

2 oz/60g caster sugar

8oz/200g plain flour

1-2 drops vanilla essence


  1. Make up the pastry and line patty tins.
  2. Fill with approximately 1 teaspoon mincemeat mixed with the brandy.
  3. Using the creaming method, make up the Viennese mixture. This should be a soft piping  consistency.
  4. Place Viennese mixture into a piping bag with a medium star nozzle.
  5. Pipe a ring around the top edge of the pies.
  6. Bake in a pre-heated oven, 200 C/Gas 6 for 15-20 minutes.

             Serve just warm, dredged lightly with sieved icing sugar.

Makes 24 pies.

To vary this recipe, use orange juice instead of cold water to make the pastry and add the rind of an orange to the pastry. Instead of brandy, add a little cointreau to the mincemeat.


Jenny xxx



Another step closer to Christmas.

Well, it’s been a busy week but a very productive one. Starting with a Christmas cake workshop at Pipedreams.

There were four very enthusiastic and lovely ladies on the course and they all completed four mini Christmas cakes decorated in different styles.

My ‘Blue Peter’ cakes, made prior to the workshop

I’ve also been able to spend quite a bit of time in the sewing room this week so thought I’d share a couple of my projects with you.

This was my first project of the week and was made from white fleece, machine embroidered around the edge and decorated with snowflakes cut by my Slice Fabrique cutter. It’s to hide the legs of an artificial Christmas tree.

Christmas tree skirt.

I also made this for the grandson of one of my dear friends. I downloaded the tutorial from Fabric Worm, a lovely site, really worth a visit;

A Christmas stocking for Allison’s grandson

Have you visited Pinterest? Another great place to browse, type my name into the search box and you will see my pin board, it will give you a little insight into what I like! The only trouble with Pinterest is that it can become a time consuming pastime if, like me, you want to see what everyone elses interests are.

OH has put the outside lights up today and Father Christmas (on my iPhone app) is telling me it’s 23 days and eight hours to Christmas so I’d best get on. Enjoy your Christmas preparations and keep warm.

Jenny xxx