Carly (above right), who accesses No. 24 Day Services, loves cooking, and she and Programme Support Worker Mira Chatterjee have been baking together for seven years now.

On Tuesdays Carly makes snacks and on Thursdays she cooks her own lunch at No. 24 in Sunderland.

So she and Mira have become a dream team over the years. Today they demonstrate how to decorate sweet mince pies and poinsettia cookies that will look a treat on your Christmas table.

Sweet mince pies

Carly and Mira use ready-made shortcrust pastry and a jar of sweet mince to create their mince pies.

To decorate:

  • Mix icing sugar with water to create a stiff icing (you don't want it to drip over the sides!)
  • Drop a teaspoon of the icing onto the top of the mince pie and leave it to spread naturally.
  • Place edible sugar paper holly leaves on top and press gently to stick (search Amazon for "cake toppers").
  • For variety, dust some of the pieces directly with icing sugar through a sieve.

Poinsettia cookies

  • Either bake your own shortbread cookies - there's a basic recipe here - or buy them ready-made.
  • Mira created the beautiful poinsettia toppers using sugar paste icing, which she cut and imprinted with a cocktail stick. 
  • Put a small dab of your icing sugar mix in the centre of the cookies and gently stick on the topper.

Find out more from our Festive Resources