The Christmas holidays is a time of year that is inextricably linked with the cooking (yay!) and then eating (hurrah!) of food. This year I was fortunate enough to be able to travel back to the land of All Blacks and Hobbits where I celebrated the festive season with my kiwi family and friends. Unlike Christmas 2009 I wasn’t responsible for a full multi-course meal, however I did spend some time in the kitchen cooking.
The cooking started at my friend Cat‘s house with a group of us and an all day Bake-a-Rama. The goal was to create a treasure chest of treats that could be brought out when required for visitors during the Christmas holidays. After the measuring, sifting, mixing and baking Cat’s kitchen table was flooded with dozens (and dozens and dozens) of cookies. Clockwise from the top we created the following:
White Chocolate and Strawberry Cookies
Dark Chocolate and Apricot Cookies
Mexican Hot Chocolate Snickerdoodles
Passionfruit Melting Moments (still to be iced)
Iced Spice Cookies
Iced Sugar Cookies
A Caramel Fruit Cake was then also added to the booty of culinary treasures:
Needless to say, visitors to Cat’s house have had a selection of baked goodness to choose from while having their cuppa tea.
More time was spent in the kitchen on Christmas Day where I cooked breakfast and then dinner for my brother and his young family. Since I was spending Christmas with small children I knew that the big day would start early…which meant that I had to start even earlier. I set my alarm on Christmas Eve and by 0630 on Christmas Day I was up and about cooking the pancakes, moving around the kitchen extremely quietly so as to not wake the smaller members of the household. I finished the double batch of batter just before the small ones invaded the lounge and the carnage that is a children’s Christmas started.
Once the carnage had ended and the little ones were out visiting the Grandparents I started on a batch of Delia Smith’s Vegetarian ‘Sausage’ Rolls (the same recipe that I used last year) and the Christmas dinner. As I mentioned in the Christmas 2009 post, a roast Christmas dinner is a tradition in our family. This year I opted to not do a full roast and instead settled on a smaller cut of cow for the family which I served with roasties, fresh peas, maple-glazed baby carrots and onion and mushroom gravy. I reckon the peas and carrots were the best bit, especially the peas. I love fresh peas, I even love shelling them, bizarre but true.
Being able to spend this festive season with family and friends that I haven’t seen for over two years has made Christmas 2010 just that little bit more special. I hope that this festive season was just as enjoyable for you as well.
See you in the new year,