Christ­mas goes clas­sic

Cel­e­brate the fes­tive sea­son in style

Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - Festive Feasts -

give your ta­ble old-world glam­our with glowing can­dle­light, metal­lic ac­cents and iconic Christ­mas green­ery such as holly and snow­dusted fir trees. Then serve up pork belly and roast lamb, in­stead of the usual ham and turkey, for a tasty twist on more tra­di­tional fare.


Prepa­ra­tion time 10 mins plus 6 hours freez­ing Cook­ing time nil

Serves 8

½ x 125g pun­net blue­ber­ries ½ x 125g pun­net rasp­ber­ries ½ mango, finely diced

80ml cognac

750ml bot­tle cham­pagne, chilled Ed­i­ble flow­ers, to gar­nish

STEP 1 Di­vide blue­ber­ries, rasp­ber­ries and mango be­tween 2 ice-cube trays. Top up with wa­ter un­til full, then freeze for 6 hours or overnight. STEP 2 When ready to serve, di­vide cognac among glasses, then put 3 fruit cubes in each glass and top up with cham­pagne. Serve im­me­di­ately, gar­nished with ed­i­ble flow­ers.


Prepa­ra­tion time 15 mins Cook­ing time 35 mins Serves 8

2 Tbsp ex­tra vir­gin olive oil 380g 3cm thick-cut beef porter­house steak, fat trimmed, cut into two 3cmthick, 16cm-long pieces Sea-salt flakes and freshly ground

black pep­per, to sea­son

25g but­ter, chopped

200g cup mush­rooms, trimmed,

very finely diced

2 tsp fresh thyme leaves

60g baby spinach leaves

2 Tbsp dried bread­crumbs 2 sheets frozen ready rolled

puff pas­try, par­tially thawed 1 free-range egg, lightly beaten 2 tsp sesame seeds Flat-leaf pars­ley leaves, to gar­nish Di­jon­naise, to serve

STEP 1 Driz­zle 1 ta­ble­spoon of the oil over steak to lightly coat, then sea­son. Heat a large fry­ing pan over high heat and cook steak for 4 min­utes, turn­ing ev­ery minute, un­til browned all over. Set aside on a plate to rest un­til room tem­per­a­ture.

STEP 2 Mean­while, heat but­ter and re­main­ing oil in a fry­ing pan over high heat. Add mush­rooms and thyme. Cook, stir­ring, for 6 min­utes, or un­til ten­der and liquid has evap­o­rated. Add spinach and stir un­til wilted. Trans­fer to a bowl. Set aside to cool, then stir in bread­crumbs.

STEP 3 Pre­heat oven to 220°C fan­forced (240°C con­ven­tional). Line an oven tray with bak­ing pa­per. Di­vide mush­room and spinach mix­ture in half, and spread down the cen­tre of each pas­try sheet, the same thick­ness as steak, then top with steak.

STEP 4 Brush ex­posed pas­try with egg, roll pas­try up over fill­ing to com­pletely cover and en­close, then trim off ex­cess pas­try. Trans­fer to pre­pared tray, seam side down. Gather in side edges of each, and press to seal.

STEP 5 Brush pas­try with a lit­tle egg, scat­ter with sesame seeds and bake for 25 min­utes, or un­til pas­try is puffed and golden. Rest for 5 min­utes, then slice. Serve im­me­di­ately gar­nished with pars­ley, with di­jon­naise on the side.


Prepa­ra­tion time 15 mins plus 30 mins mar­i­nat­ing Cook­ing time 8 mins Makes 16

2 cloves gar­lic, finely grated Finely grated zest of ½ lime 2 Tbsp lime juice

1 Tbsp honey

1 Tbsp ex­tra vir­gin olive oil Sea-salt flakes and freshly ground

black pep­per, to sea­son 1 skin­less chicken breast,

cut into 1cm cubes

1 cup Kew­pie may­on­naise

¼ cup Sriracha chilli sauce ½ mango, flesh finely diced Finely sliced red chilli, to gar­nish Mi­cro herbs, to gar­nish

STEP 1 Put gar­lic, lime zest, juice, honey and oil in a large bowl and mix to com­bine. Sea­son and add chicken, toss well to coat. Cover and re­frig­er­ate for 30 min­utes to mar­i­nate.

STEP 2 Pre­heat a char­grill pan over medium heat. Thread chicken pieces onto 16 small bam­boo skew­ers. Cook chicken for 8 min­utes, turn­ing un­til charred all over and cooked through.

STEP 3 Mean­while, roughly swirl may­on­naise and chilli sauce to­gether in a small bowl. Trans­fer to a zip-lock bag, snip tip and pipe mix­ture among 16 shot glasses.

STEP 4 Spoon mango on top, then place a skewer into each glass. Gar­nish with chilli and mi­cro herbs. Serve.


Prepa­ra­tion time 20 mins plus overnight mar­i­nat­ing Cook­ing time 2 hours 15 mins Serves 8

125ml red wine

3 Tbsp cran­berry jelly

2 Tbsp bal­samic vine­gar

2 tsp di­jon mus­tard

2 cloves gar­lic, finely grated 16 sprigs thyme

4 x 450g lamb shoul­der mini roasts Sea-salt flakes and freshly ground

black pep­per, to sea­son Gar­lic mashed potato, to serve Green beans, to serve Wa­ter­cress, to serve


125ml red wine

2 tsp brown sugar 1 cin­na­mon stick

2 Tbsp cran­berry jelly 250ml beef stock 2 Tbsp plain flour 50g but­ter, melted

STEP 1 Com­bine wine, jelly, vine­gar, mus­tard and gar­lic in a large zip-lock bag. Ar­range thyme on top of lamb down the cen­tre and se­cure with kitchen twine. Add lamb to bag, mas­sage to coat in mari­nade, and re­frig­er­ate for 2 hours or ide­ally overnight to mar­i­nate. STEP 2 Pre­heat oven to 140°C fan­forced (160°C con­ven­tional). Line a roast­ing pan with bak­ing pa­per. Ar­range lamb in a sin­gle layer in pan and pour over mari­nade. Sea­son. Cover tightly with foil. Roast for 2 hours, or un­til very ten­der. Re­move foil, in­crease oven to 220°C fan-forced (240°C con­ven­tional). Re­turn lamb to oven and bake for 15 min­utes, or un­til golden brown on top, bast­ing with pan juices half­way through cook­ing. Set aside to rest for 10 min­utes. STEP 3 Mean­while, make gravy. Pour wine into a small saucepan. Stir in sugar, cin­na­mon and jelly, then add 1 cup of pan juices. Bring to the boil and re­duce by half. Add stock and sim­mer for a fur­ther 3 min­utes. Mix flour and but­ter in a small bowl un­til a paste forms, then add to sauce and whisk un­til sauce is thick and smooth. STEP 4 Thickly slice lamb and serve on a bed of gar­lic mash with beans, wa­ter­cress and mulled wine gravy.

To make gar­lic mashed pota­toes, boil 2kg peeled pota­toes un­til ten­der. Mash un­til al­most smooth. Mean­while, put 50g but­ter and 2 crushed cloves gar­lic in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stir­ring, un­til but­ter turns light golden and is fra­grant. Add 300ml thick­ened cream and bring to a sim­mer, then add to pota­toes, mash­ing un­til smooth. Sea­son. Serve.


Prepa­ra­tion time 20 mins plus overnight dry­ing time Cook­ing time 1 hour 55 mins Serves 8

1.25kg bone­less pork belly 2 cloves gar­lic 2 tsp whole fen­nel seeds

1 tsp ground Chi­nese five spice 2 Tbsp ex­tra vir­gin olive oil,

plus ex­tra 1 Tbsp

2 leeks, trimmed, cut into

2cm-thick rounds

2 car­rots, peeled, sliced

into 2cm-thick rounds

2 tsp fine salt

2 tsp sea-salt flakes Steamed baby corn,

sliced into rounds Co­rian­der leaves and mi­cro

herbs, to gar­nish


¾ cup caster sugar

2 Tbsp wa­ter

1 Tbsp red wine vine­gar

1 cup cher­ries, pit­ted and halved 1 tsp freshly ground black pep­per

STEP 1 Use a sharp knife or Stan­ley knife to score pork rind, in par­al­lel lines, with­out cut­ting all the way through into the meat.

STEP 2 Put pork belly, rind side up, on a wire rack in the kitchen sink and pour over a ket­tle full of boil­ing wa­ter.

STEP 3 Pat pork rind dry with pa­per towel and put on a plas­tic tray, un­cov­ered in the re­frig­er­a­tor, overnight or for 6 hours.

STEP 4 Pre­heat oven to 250°C fan­forced (270°C con­ven­tional). Put gar­lic, fen­nel seeds, five spice and oil in a small bowl to com­bine. Rub all over the pork meat (but not on the rind).

STEP 5 Ar­range leeks and car­rots in a large roast­ing pan, cut sides fac­ing up. Sit pork belly on top,

rind side up, cov­er­ing veg­eta­bles. Rub scored rind with ex­tra oil, then rub in salts. Roast for 40 min­utes.

STEP 6 Re­duce oven to 160°C fan­forced (180°C con­ven­tional). Roast for a fur­ther 1 hour. In­crease oven to 230°C fan-forced (250°C con­ven­tional) and roast for a fi­nal 15 min­utes, or un­til pork is cooked when tested and rind is well blis­tered. Set aside for 15 min­utes be­fore carv­ing into 8 pieces.

STEP 7 Mean­while, to make black pep­per cherry caramel, com­bine sugar, wa­ter and vine­gar in a small saucepan over high heat, stir­ring un­til sugar dis­solves, then cook, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, un­til caramel in colour. Stir in cher­ries and pep­per, and re­move from heat.

STEP 8 Spoon a lit­tle of the black pep­per cherry caramel onto 8 small plates. Ar­range leek, car­rot, corn and pork on top. Gar­nish with co­rian­der and mi­cro herbs. Serve with re­main­ing caramel sauce on the side to add as de­sired.


Prepa­ra­tion time 25 mins plus 6 hours freez­ing Cook­ing time 35 mins Serves 8

Melted but­ter, to grease, plus ex­tra

125g but­ter, chopped, chilled ¾ cup plain flour, plus ex­tra 1 Tbsp ¾ cup self-rais­ing flour

2 Tbsp ic­ing sugar mix­ture

2 Tbsp iced wa­ter 1 Tbsp in­stant cof­fee gran­ules 1 Tbsp hot wa­ter

395g can con­densed milk 1 free-range egg

100g dark choco­late melts, melted Co­coa pow­der, to dust

8 Fer­rero Rocher choco­lates, halved 160ml cof­fee-flavoured liqueur,

to serve

FRUIT CAKE ICE-CREAM 1L vanilla ice-cream

1 cup fruit cake, crumbed 2 Tbsp brandy

STEP 1 To make Fruit cake ice-cream, put ice-cream in a large bowl and set aside for 10 min­utes to soften slightly. Beat with a wooden spoon un­til al­most smooth, then stir in cake and brandy un­til well com­bined. Re­turn ice-cream to ice-cream con­tainer. Freeze for 6 hours or overnight.

STEP 2 Pre­heat oven to 200°C fan-forced (220°C con­ven­tional). Grease a 25cm (base mea­sure­ment) loose-bot­tomed flan tin with but­ter. Put flours, ic­ing sugar mix­ture and ex­tra but­ter in a food pro­ces­sor and process un­til mix­ture re­sem­bles fine bread­crumbs.

STEP 3 Add iced wa­ter and process again un­til mix­ture comes to­gether to form a soft dough.

STEP 4 Roll out pas­try be­tween 2 sheets of bak­ing pa­per un­til large enough to line the base and sides of pre­pared tin. Trim edges. Re­frig­er­ate for 10 min­utes, then bake for 10 min­utes. Re­move from oven, re­duce oven to 180°C fan-forced (220°C con­ven­tional). STEP 5 Com­bine cof­fee with hot wa­ter in a large bowl un­til dis­solved. Whisk in con­densed milk and egg, fol­lowed by melted choco­late and ex­tra plain flour and whisk again un­til com­bined. Pour into pas­try case and bake for 25 min­utes. The fill­ing will puff up, but will de­flate on cool­ing. Set aside to cool to room tem­per­a­ture. STEP 6 Slice tart into 8 wedges and ar­range each on a serv­ing plate. Dust with co­coa. Top with Fer­rero Rocher halves, and a scoop of fruit cake ice-cream on the side. Serve a shot glass of liqueur on the side to pour over tart, or sip on it while en­joy­ing your dessert. Serve im­me­di­ately.


Prepa­ra­tion time 10 mins Cook­ing time 15 mins Makes 36

Cook­ing oil spray, to grease Plain flour, to dust, plus ex­tra 1/2 cup 150g al­mond meal

11/2 cups ic­ing sugar mix­ture,

sifted, plus ex­tra to dust Finely grated zest of 1 lemon 150g un­salted but­ter, melted 5 free-range egg whites 36 frozen rasp­ber­ries

2 Tbsp finely chopped pis­ta­chios

STEP 1 Pre­heat oven to 180°C fan-forced (200°C con­ven­tional). Grease 36 holes of two 24-hole 40ml­ca­pac­ity mini muf­fin pans with oil spray, then dust lightly with flour.

STEP 2 Com­bine al­mond meal, ic­ing sugar mix­ture, zest and ex­tra flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the cen­tre. Stir in but­ter.

STEP 3 Put whites in a large bowl, whisk un­til foamy. Gently fold through al­mond meal mix­ture in 3 batches un­til smooth.

STEP 4 Di­vide bat­ter among pre­pared pan holes. Put a frozen rasp­berry in cen­tre of each. Sprin­kle with pis­ta­chios. Bake for 15 min­utes, or un­til golden and cooked through. Set aside in tin for 5 min­utes to cool, then re­move from pan and trans­fer to a wire rack to cool. Dust with ex­tra ic­ing sugar. Serve.

Mini beef welling­tons

Cham­pagne cocktail

Gar­lic, lime and honey chicken

Pork belly

Cran­berry and herb roast lamb

Rasp­berry friands

Dark choco­late and cof­fee tart

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