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For the pastry, tip the flour, spices and butter into a large bowl with a large pinch of salt. Rub together with your fingertips until the mix resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar. Add the egg and use a cutlery knife to mix everything until the ingredients start to clump together. Tip out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead briefly until you have a smooth dough. Or, pulse the ingredients together in a food processor. Shape into a disc, then wrap and chill for at least 30 mins. Will keep chilled for a day or frozen for three months.
Heat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Mix the mincemeat with the ginger and syrup. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface to a 3mm thickness. Stamp out 12 discs using an 8cm biscuit cutter and lightly press into a 12-hole cupcake tin.
Fill each pastry case with 1 tbsp of the mincemeat mixture. Re-roll the pastry scraps and stamp out 12 mini gingerbread people, then place one on top of each pie. Will keep frozen for up to two months.
Bake for 20 mins, or 30 mins from frozen. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 mins, then lift out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar. Will keep in an airtight container for up to four days.