My fondest childhood memories of Christmas were making mince pies with my grandmother. Baking with your children is a great bonding experience and all the actions of stirring, pouring and rolling are excellent for tuning their fine motor skills. Mince pies have lots of easy stages where they can get fully involved, not to mention the final stage - consumption! And don't forget, as my Dad would say to me, that Father Christmas is extremely partial to one with his glass of port...
What you need:
Ready rolled sheets or block of shortcrust pastry.
150g of mincemeat
25g plain flour (for dusting the surface)
Dessert spoon of butter to grease the tray
Preheat the oven to 190C.
Dust a flat surface with a little flour and place your sheet of pastry on it, or if you have a block, roll it to 50mm thick.
Cut circles with pastry cutters. Lightly grease a mince pie tray (cupcake tray) and place one circle in the bottom of each, a dessert spoon of mincemeat inside and a circle on top. Pinch the edges of the pastry circles together then cut a slit in the top to allow the steam to escape. Beat an egg in a bowl with a fork then paint the pies with a pastry brush. If you own an appropriate cutter, place little pastry stars on top too.
Bake for 20 mins then dust with icing/confectioner's sugar.
Makes around 8-10 pies and goes particularly well with a glass of mulled wine, although Father Christmas apparently prefers port.