It’s Friday and Day 12 on our Community Advent Calendar. After a busy week sweeping paths, joining clubs and singing at the top of your lungs, it’s time to open your door and invite a neighbour in for a mince pie.

A survey of the people we support identified that not having contact or interaction with people was a common factor in feeling lonely and isolated.

The survey highlighted the word ‘community’ as being viewed very positively among the people we support; one individual said:

“It means people, friendship and getting on well together, so that if something should happen to me or other people, we can help each other.”

Get baking

On Day 12, we therefore want to reiterate the importance of maintaining friendships and relationships with those around you, so roll up your sleeves, put on your apron and get baking! Then boil the kettle and invite someone over for a mince pie.

Here’s a simple recipe you can use (as everyone loves homemade cakes!), but if you don't have time, fret not - you can pop to the shops and buy a few treats to accompany your brew.


  • 500g shop-bought shortcrust pastry
  • 400g jar of mincemeat
  • Unsalted butter for greasing
  • 1 egg
  • Plain flour for dusting
  • Icing sugar for dusting the top


  • Cutter/glass tumbler
  • 12-hole cupcake tray
  • Rolling pin
  • Pastry brush
  • Two teaspoons


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Grease a 12 hole cupcake tray lightly with a small amount of butter.
  3. Dust a clean surface with flour and roll out the pastry until it’s as thick as a pound coin.
  4. Cut out 12 circles using a pastry cutter or a glass tumbler - ask someone to help if you need it. These need to be large enough so the pastry covers the sides up to the top of each hole (a 3-inch cutter will usually do!).
  5. Spoon the mincemeat into the pies.
  6. Use the remaining pastry to cut out another 12 circles for the lids – use a smaller cutter for this - or you could make shapes like stars!
  7. Brush the edges of the lids with a beaten egg and lay these on top of the pies. Press the edges and lids together so they stick.
  8. Brush the tops of the pies with more of the egg wash.
  9. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes until golden brown.
  10. Carefully remove the pies from the tin and leave to cool.
  11. Dust with icing sugar and eat!

Share your photos

We’d love to see how your mince pies turn out. Like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter and send us your photos! 
Natalie Millbank, community and event fundraiser.