It is a good plan to have one dish of hot mince-pies and one of cold. All tastes will then be suited.

Required: Pastry of any kind. Mincemeat. Castor sugar.

Though any kind of pastry can be used, it is generally puff-pastry that appears on the Christmas dinner-table.

Roll out the pastry barely quarter of an inch thick; choose a cutter a size larger than the patty-tins to be used. Stamp the pastry into rounds - these should be put aside for the tops of the mince-pies, as they will be superior to the pastry that has more handling and rolling. Next work all the trimmings into a smooth ball, and roll it out on a floured board rather thinner than the first. Stamp this also into rounds. Line the patty-tins with these rounds, pressing the pastry on to the tin. Put a good heap of mincemeat in each tin. Brush a round of pastry with a little water, put it over the mincemeat, pressing the edges of pastry together. Make a hole in the centre of the pie with a skewer. When all are made put them on a baking-tin and bake in a quick oven.

When done, brush each mince-pie with a little water, and sprinkle it with castor sugar.

Arrange the mince-pies on a lace-paper, and put a sprig of holly on them.

N.B. - When using puff-pastry the tins need not be greased.