Christmas Planning & Recipe Ideas Countdown

Christmas Planning & Recipe Ideas Countdown

It’s almost here – again! How on earth did that happen?

So obviously you are wanting to plan for food for the big day & any celebrations with family & friends leading up to Christmas 🙂 So I bring to you some inspiration & ideas to get you through this crazy busy time 😉

The Festive Flavours Cookbook & Chip is really great with some really good ideas for making your own gifts too like flavoured salts or spice rubs or flavoured sugars.

festive-flavour-book-1

The Festive Flavours Cookbook is one of 4 books currently available to purchase in a book bundle saving you money. There are also lots of other great gifts available from the Thermomix online shop.

One of my favourite recipes from the Festive Flavour Book is  the Pork & Chicken Terrine & I am definitely making that again – it was really delicious, it has cranberries & pistachios in it too.Terrine

Our family love my Thermie green avocado dip & this year I will be making the warm roasted cauliflower hummus from Dani Valent Cooking – speaking of which, wouldn’t a subscription to this site be a great gift for Christmas – there are already over 40 recipe videos available (index here) with a new one added each week, Dani Valent also has a Christmas ebook available to purchase for $15 or it’s free to her subscribers. See some of her recipes on my post called my addiction to Dani Valent Cooking 🙂 I am almost certain we will be having the Basque Cheesecake on Christmas day too!!

Also don’t forget about the recipe platform now called Cookidoo – what a great way to plan out your dishes for the festive season – if you haven’t signed up yet it is really easy to use with a great shopping list feature too. Here is the link to sign up to Cookidoo & you will get 1 free recipe collection when you sign up.

I am having a fun countdown on my social media pages sharing a different recipe idea each day – I hope you enjoy it & get some great ideas to use for your special day 🙂 Merry Christmas everyone!!

Day 1 recipe is my friend Kelly’s Dutch Spice Speculaas recipe here

speculaas

Day 2: Strawberry & Rosewater Sorbet for Cocktails or Mocktails

Strawberry & Rosewater Sorbet

Strawberry & Rosewater Sorbet

 

Day 3 Thermie Green Avocado Dip This is one of the best dips ever – even if I do say so myself, put it on your Christmas & or entertaining menu this season or maybe just put it in your mouth!! Your taste buds will thank you 😉

The Best Avocado Dip

The Best Avocado Dip

Day 4: I introduce to you the “Cheesecake” You can put as many or as little layers as you like of your favourite cheeses & I have included a layer of my favourite fruitcake to eat with cheddar cheese. You have to trust me on this it is seriously good – I also made some apple paste to go on my “cheese cake” because I’m all out of my homemade quince paste. I was also toying with the idea of making rounds of homemade crackers to put in between the cake layers so when you dismantle the “cheesecake” you could break the big cracker into a few pieces to serve with the cheese too.

cheesecake

fruit-cake-with-cheese-2

Day 5 inspiration is Smolt’s Lemon Curd  You can give it as gifts or serve it on or with your christmas desserts – Like pavlova with fresh berries!!

lemon-butter

Day 6: Black Forest Trifle is another family favourite YUM!!

Black Forrest Trifle

Black Forrest Trifle

Day 7: Southern Stars White Christmas Custard – Coconut, White Chocolate, Frangelico & Vanilla Bean – our Thermomix team created this recipe for a custard challenge last Christmas & it is very delicious 🙂

Vanilla Custard

Day 8: My Fruit Mince Surprise – it’s got rhubarb in it!! YUM! You can do so much with this delicious stuff – Add some fruit mince to some cream cheese and serve with fruit for Christmas sweet dip, stir through your ice cream mixture or serve with vanilla or brandy custard. Use fruit mince with thick custard or whipped cream as a profiterole filling, or use in fruit mince pies, pull apart bread or spread onto rectangles of puff pastry or brioche dough and make scrolls.

fruit-mince

Fruit Mince Surprise
Author: 
Recipe type: Christmas
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Use Fruit Mince in profiteroles mixed with cream or thick custard, fruit mince pies, pull apart bread or spread onto rectangles of puff pastry or brioche dough and make scrolls. Add some Fruit Mince to cream cheese and serve with fruit for Christmas sweet dip. Stir through your ice cream mixture or serve with vanilla or brandy custard.
Ingredients
  • 1 orange zest
  • 500 g apples peeled, cored and quartered
  • 200g chopped rhubarb
  • 100 g dates dried
  • 80 g craisins
  • 100 g currants
  • 15 g fresh ginger piece chopped/ minced
  • 60 g flaked almonds
  • Juice 2 oranges
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamon
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Cointreau or Brandy (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place orange zest, dates and fresh ginger into mixing bowl and mince for 20
  2. sec/speed 9.
  3. Add apples and chop 4-6 sec/speed 6.
  4. Add remaining ingredients except brandy and cook for 35 min/Varoma/
  5. /speed 1. Cool slightly,remove the bay leaves & stir in cointreau or brandy, set aside
  6. until ready to use.

 

Christmas Profiterole

Christmas Profiterole – serving suggestion for my Special Fruit Mince

 

Day 9: Ellie’s Turducken. Yes it’s a chicken in a duck in a turkey!!

 

Day 10: Spiced Cherry Brioche from the Festive Flavours Cookbook – you can put any of your favourite fillings in 🙂 spiced-cherry-brioche-3

Day 11: Sarah’s Cheese Biscuits make up a few batches of this & store in the freezer in log ready to slice & bake when unexpected guests arrived or an attack of the munchies! Perfect with a glass of bubbles!

Sarah's Cheese Biscuits

Sarah’s Cheese Biscuits

Day 12: Mum’s Chicken & Mango Salad – Such a versatile salad great to use up left over steamed chicken breast (after steaming a whole chook) or poaching chicken breasts in the Thermomix. You can use any nuts you like either cashews, macadamia or pistachios. Finely chopped celery for the crunch & fresh element, 1 mango sliced, sliced spring onions. Avocado is delicious in it too. I used cucumber because I had some in the fridge & added fresh parsley & mint leaves. Mum dressed it with 1/2 homemade mayo & half natural yoghurt 1 tsp of curry powder & 1 tabs of tomato relish. I used a honey & seeded mustard vinaigrette to dress it, my sister likes to use an Asian style dressing with soy sauce, fresh ginger & garlic.

chicken-mango-salad-2

Day 13: 60 Sec Fruitcake from the Devil of Cookbook – there are lots of other great Christmas recipes in this cookbook – Toblerone cheesecake,  raspberry & white chocolate cheese cake just to name a few 🙂

xmas-cake-1024x683

Day 14: Nicole’s Festive Nougat – My friend Nicole makes these very year to give as gifts to friends.

nougat

Day 15 : Spinach & Cheese Grissini

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Day 16: Flavoured butters can jazz anything up in a hurry & you can store them in the freezer. Dani Valent has some great butter flavour ideas & video of her making butter in the Thermomix. My friends at a girl, a guy furkids & food have a fabulous butter recipe then add any flavour you like – last year I made turkey skin butter as a variant to Dani Valent’s In the Mix cookbook Chicken Skin Butter recipe.

turkey-skin-butter

Day 17: Festive Cauliflower Salad is so easy & delicious 🙂

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Day 18: Herb & Garlic Dip can be made into a great canape’ spread on sliced of french stick or sliced veggies with some smoked salmon YUM!!

Day 19: The good old Aussie Pav, you can make in all shapes & sizes with any choice of topping from fruits nuts & sauces, the possibilities are endless. Try the wreath recipe or pavlova stack.

Day 20: Shortbread Stars – recipe from my friend Erica.

Day 21: Gingerbread or Gingerbread House – I use the recipe from the Festive Flavours Cookbook.

Gingerbread house made by my customer Natalie & her 3 year old daughter.

 

Day 22: Beetroot Cured Salmon – there is a recipe in the Festive Flavours cookbook but I used the Jamie Oliver one from his new Christmas Cookbook & made the curing mixture with the Thermomix. I have served it here on Blinis – however it is so versatile you could serve it on cucumber rounds or rounds of baguettes – serve on top of a green salad to make it into a dish.

 

Day 23: Double Chocolate Pretzel Cookies from In the Mix 2 & Dani Valent Cooking – Santa will love them too!

Day 24: Basque Cheesecake from Dani Valent Cooking

MERRY CHRISTMAS & HAPPY THERMOMIXING!!

Green Eggs & Ham Fritatta

Green Eggs & Ham Fritatta

fritatta-1

Yes the name of this recipe is a link to one of my favourite childhood books by Dr Suess. After eating this fritatta I’m sure you would say you like to eat green eggs & ham (or bacon) anywhere. This is a recipe that is just in my brain & you can use any vegetables or any cheese, perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner, great for lunch boxes too – See my live face book video of me making the dish here. I’d love to know any of your variations, I sometimes make a fritata with smoked salmon as well .

 

Green Eggs & Ham Fritatta
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9 serves
 
Very easy to vary with different veggies 🙂
Ingredients
  • 1 large sweet potato roughly cubed (no need to peel)
  • 4 rashers of bacon
  • 1 red onion sliced
  • 5 sprigs fresh parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 100g spinach or silver beet leaves
  • 8 eggs
  • 250g cream or greek yoghurt
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 200g feta cheese
Instructions
  1. Turn the oven on to 180 degrees & in your baking dish roast your sweet potato, onion & bacon rashers, you don't want to over cook the bacon & the sweet potato should be just cooked through.
  2. Place garlic & parsley into the TM bowl & chop for 2 secs speed 7. Add the spinach & chop roughly for 3 secs speed 5.5 - you may need to use your spatula to help push all the leaves into the blades.
  3. Add the eggs, cream & salt & pepper & mix for 5 secs speed 4. Spread the mixture over the roasted sweet potato & bacon. Crumble over the feta cheese & return to the oven to bake for approx 20 mins or until golden.

Thermie Green Vegetarian Curry

Thermie Green Vegetarian Curry

IMG_2323

This is one of the first recipes I added to the Thermomix recipe community around 6.5 years ago & it has been extremely popular – of course you can add chicken to it if you prefer, it’s great to grow my own lime leaves too. You can store lime leaves, chillies & coriander roots in the freezer, so you have most of the ingredients ready to go for an easy week night dinner packed full of flavour. It’s delicious served with my coconut rice recipe too – if you are making the coconut rice recipe in the Model 5 you need to add more liquid either coconut cream or water to take it up to the 1200g marker & it’s a bonus you can steam more veggies on top of the rice while it’s steaming! Or if you really want to pack in more veggies why not serve it with my roasted cauliflower “rice” recipe. For more great vegetarian recipe ideas click here.

Thermie Green Vegetarian Curry
Author: 
Cuisine: Thai
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Leave out the fish sauce if you are making this for vegetarians.
Ingredients
  • 1 onion cut in half.
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ginger, approx 2cm
  • 1 bunch coriander , including roots
  • 1 tablespoon TM vegie stock concentrate
  • 3 big green chilies, with or without seeds depending how spicy you like it
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce, optional- leave out for vegetarian guests
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground coriander
  • 3 fresh or frozen kaffir lime leaves
  • 600 grams sweet potato, pumpkin, carrot or potato, 2cm cubed -use any or a combination of all of these vegetables
  • 400 grams light organic coconut cream
  • 400 grams zucchini, broccoli, peas or snow peas, cut into chunks-use any or a combination of all of these vegetables or other favourites you may have
  • 400 gram Chickpeas, drained & Rinsed (one tin)
  • 100 grams spinach leaves, fresh
Instructions
  1. Put onion, garlic, ginger, coriander, tm stock and chillies in the TM bowl chop for 15 sec speed 8, scrape down sides of bowl.
  2. Add peanut oil, fish sauce and ground coriander & cumin and cook for 4 min 100 degrees speed 1.
  3. Add kaffir lime leaves, coconut cream & 600g hard vegetables to TM bowl.
  4. Place spinach leaves into the thermoserver.
  5. Add the rest of the soft green vegetables place into the Varoma -zucchini & broccoli on the bottom & snow peas & peas on the top tray.
  6. Cook for 15 mins reverse Varoma temp speed 1. Check vegetables if any of the steamed vegetables are cooked remove & place into the thermosever.
  7. Add chickpeas to TM bowl & cook for an extra 5 mins reverse Varoma speed 1 only if vegetables need to be cooked further.
  8. Add to the Thermoserver & stir through the spinach.
  9. Serve with coconut rice or jasmine rice.

 

 

Family Favourite Lamb Pie topped with Sweet Potato Mash

Family Favourite Lamb Pie topped with Sweet Potato Mash

Weekday family comfort food at it’s best & it’s hubby’s favourite dinner too, so I know how to get into his good books -just make this for dinner & some apple pie with custard for dessert 🙂

Lamb Pie

Family Favourite Lamb Pie topped with Sweet Potato Mash
Author: 
Recipe type: Family Comfort Food
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 - 8 serves
 
Comfort food to keep the whole family happy - try different veggies or a combo of veggies for the topping, cauliflower, potato, parsnip, jerusalem artichoke.
Ingredients
  • 1kg lamb, cubed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 each sprigs fresh rosemary and thyme leaves
  • 1 brown onion halved
  • 2 sprigs fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 400g tomatoes, diced, canned (or fresh cherry tomatoes)
  • 50g tomato paste
  • 100g frozen peas
  • 1 carrot halved
  • 1 celery stick cut in two
  • 1tbs Stock Concentrate
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste
  • 2 bay leaves, fresh, or dried
  • 10g cornflour (optional)
  • 20g olive oil
  • Sweet Potato topping
  • 1kg sweet potato cubed, no need to peel
  • 50g Good Parmasen cheese
  • 250g milk or cream
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 30g Butter
  • 1 clove garlic
Instructions
  1. TOPPING- Chop parmasean cheese (and garlic) for 5 secs speed 10.
  2. Set it to one side.
  3. Insert the butterfly whisk & add your sweet potatoes, milk or cream (or a mix of both) salt & pepper, cook for 15 - 20 mins 100 degrees speed 1 until cooked completely.
  4. Add the butter & mash for 20 secs speed 4.
  5. Place to one side while you make the filling (or you can make the filling first & then make the topping, your choice!)
  6. LAMB FILLING -Place garlic & herbs into TM bowl & chop for 5 secs speed 7.
  7. Add onion, carrot & celery & chop for 5 secs speed 4, you may need a couple of seconds longer depending on their size.
  8. Scrape down side of the bowl add the oil & saute' for 3 mins Varoma temp speed 1.
  9. Add lamb & cook 10 mins 100 degrees reverse speed 1.
  10. Add remaining filling ingredients except the peas & cook for 20 mins 100 degrees reverse speed 1. Add the peas & cook for another 5 mins 100 degrees reverse speed 1.
  11. Pour mixture into a large baking dish.
  12. Spread with your sweet potato topping & cheese.
  13. Bake in the oven at 180 - 200 degrees for 20 mins or until brown.

 

Lamb Pie with spoon

Beetroot & Goats Cheese Tart

Beetroot & Goats Cheese Tart

 

Beetroot

Yes as may have guessed I have quiet a few Cookbooks, & I couldn’t resist getting the Milk Made Cookbook by Nick Haddow & the first recipe I had to make was this delicious tart – What’s not to love? beetroot & goats cheese a match made in heaven 🙂

 

Roasted beetroot tart

 

 

 

Fresh Pasta Photoshoot

Fresh Pasta Photoshoot

What a fun morning we had at TAFE in the studio – I whipped up a batch of fresh pasta dough in the Thermomix (2 eggs & 200g flour with an optional tbs olive oil & kneaded for 2 mins in the Thermomix) I got out the pasta machine & rolled it out. I wanted to try a different style of food photography – after getting my classmate to be a hand model – I decided I wanted my own “posh lady” hands in the shot instead & was very pleased with quite a few of the photos I got. After a bit of editing I will probably use this first shot for our end of year exhibition.

emotive food pasta

emotive food pasta side view

 

emotive food pasta overhead

emotive food pasta side view craig

emotive food pasta overhead 2