A Christmas Review

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The internet issues were even worse yesterday so the promised post did not eventuate.

I think that I will remember Christmas 2016 as the one that seemed to revolve almost entirely around food.  We had numerous members of family around at different times over the Christmas and New Year period so feeding everyone seemed like a constant merry-go-round.  However, I must say that it is one that I enjoy.

As always, the Christmas Day menu was a mixture of some tried and true favourites along with some more recent additions to my repertoire.  I was catering for 9 adults and 3 children with a few restrictions due to allergies and intolerances.  The menu was gluten-free, nut free and no seafood or kiwifruit.

Here is what we ate:


Pineapple and ginger cocktails
Grilled asparagus and proscuitto-wrapped haloumi


Cold chicken curry and rice
Cold roast beef with quinoa stuffing


Quinoa tabouli
Mango and avocado salad
Potato salad
Tomato and pomegranate salad
Grated carrot, grated cheese


Ice-cream Christmas pudding
Meringue roulade with raspberries


Chocolate brownies
White Christmas

Everything turned out well.  We had plenty of food but we did not over-indulge to an excessive extent.  The highlights for me were the quinoa stuffing for the beef as well as the desserts.  I had a general idea of how I wanted to make the stuffing so just made it up as I went along until I had the right flavour and texture.  My daughter the roulade as she had last year.  It is relatively simply but oh so luscious!  I Christmas pudding was a reprise of a similar one I made about 30 years ago.  This time I soaked the fruit (in orange juice as it is not cooked) before stirring it through the softened ice-cream along with some mixed spice.  I also added 23 sixpences which added an element of fun for the kids – big and little!

Unfortunately, I was busy preparing, cooking and eating food so completely forgot to take any photos.  You will just have to imagine how good it all looked and tasted.


Friday Favourites – Layered Salad


This week I have another salad for you.  It is simply known as ‘Layered Salad’.  The original recipe was given to me by a friend about 25 years ago after I tasted it at a BBQ.


Iceberg lettuce
2 cups frozen peas
4 eggs
200g mushrooms
1 cup mayonnaise
Small tub natural yoghurt
2 rashers shortcut bacon

Wash and dry about 6 large lettuce leaves.
Cook peas and allow to cool.
Dice and dry-fry the bacon.
Hardboil the eggs.  Cool and mash finely.  (I use a mouli-grater)
Slice mushrooms.
Cut the tomato into wedges.

Use the lettuce  leaves to line a large salad bowl.  Layer the other ingredients inside the lettuce.

2011-12-23 01Start with the peas, then the egg……

2011-12-23 02and finally mushroom.

2011-12-23 03Mix the mayonnaise and yoghurt together and pour over the top of the mushrooms.  Arrange tomato wedges around the edge of the bowl and sprinkle mayonnaise mixture with bacon bits.

2011-12-23 04


The quantities in this recipe are only a guide.  Use a bowl to suit the numbers you are serving.  The ingredients are designed to completely fill the chosen bowl.