Christmas Day lunch.

It’s not every year I get the chance to do what I love so much at Christmas time: feed lots and lots of people by cooking lots and lots of yummy dishes. Some years it’s quiet and that’s okay too, but I am super excited that this year we are having the kind of Christmas Day lunch that requires an extra table, the purchase of new tableware, and the juggling of fridges and freezers.

Everything seems to begin and end with the decision of what the main protein will be. The decision between pork and lamb will have some influence on the sides. It has to be a {mostly} unanimous decision, and whatever it is will usually be cooked outside on the spit roast. Always a good idea as it just frees up the kitchen SO much. Variety is the key to making things extra special, so there will also be some seafood, vegies, hearty salads, and a vibrant garden salad with all the good stuff growing in our garden at the moment that hasn’t already been eaten by the birds. Then there’s dessert. And did I mention appetisers?

I’ve always preferred the vegetable side dishes to the meats but this year I’ll be tweaking a few things to make as many vegan options as possible. It’s easily done: no creamy mayo based dressings, leaving the pancetta garnish for the gazpacho shots on top of the glass rather than in the soup, and skipping my usual Christmas splurge of goose fat to cook my potatoes. There will also be some vegan cheese snuck onto the cheese platter with no-one any the wiser, plus all the amazing fresh seasonal fruit that is so abundant at this time of year.

Below is my Christmas day menu for this year, just click on the image to see the recipes in full. Some are my own and some are via Pinterest. The lamb and turkey that are going on the spit roast don’t come with recipes I’m sorry to say!

APPETISER: my bacalao fritters, served with lime aioli.

 

APPETISER 2: goats cheese & prosciutto crostini. Recipe courtesy of www.reluctantentertainer.com

APPETISER: goats cheese & prosciutto crostini with baby rocket and caramelised balsamic. Recipe courtesy of Reluctant Entertainer.

 

APPETISER 3: gazpacho shots with croutons and crispy pancetta wafers. Recipe my own but first time serving it in shot glasses.

APPETISER: gazpacho shots with croutons and crispy pancetta wafers. The recipe is my own but it’s the first time I’ll try serving it in shot glasses with garnishes.

 

SIDE DISH 1: my chickpea tahini salad, but I'm swapping the sweet potato for pumpkin, and adding tricolour quinoa.

SIDE DISH: my chickpea tahini salad, but I’m swapping the sweet potato for pumpkin, and adding some tricolour quinoa to bulk it out.

 

SIDE DISH 2: my insane crispy potatoes.

SIDE DISH: my insane crispy potatoes. You can’t not have potatoes, right?

 

SIDE DISH 3: my Dalmatian octopus and potato salad.

SIDE DISH: my Dalmatian octopus and potato salad. It will most likely be made on Christmas Eve in feed-an-army amounts, but it’s so much better the next day and good to eat cold too.

 

SIDE DISH 4: no mayo coleslaw. I found this one on Pinterest but it's almost identical to my own recipe. This recipe is courtesy of Mark Matsumoto via pbs.org/food

SIDE DISH: no mayo coleslaw. I found this one on Pinterest but it’s almost identical to my own recipe. I’ll probably add some apple too, as well as some kind of nuts. This recipe is courtesy of Mark Matsumoto.

 

DESSERT: tiramisu. I've had a hand written recipe I've used and barely need anymore for so long that I don't remember where it came from, but this version from Ina Garten is almost the same.

DESSERT: tiramisu. I’ve had a hand written recipe I’ve used and barely need anymore for so long that I don’t remember where it came from, but this version from Ina Garten, a.k.a. The Barefoot Contessa, is pretty much how I make my own. It’s a very simple and classic version, true to the original Italian dish.

 

Plus there’s the garden salad, fresh fruit, almond bread and crostoli {store bought}, some antipasto to kick off the morning, and all sorts of drinks.

I’m feeling full just thinking about it.

😉

Have yourselves a very Merry Christmas folks. Thanks for sticking with me through the abandonment of the blog for most for the last year, and thank you for being so supportive and welcoming of all the new recipes as well as the new change of direction. Eat, drink, and be merry. I’ll see you all {no doubt a few kilo’s heavier} in 2017.

Cheers,

Ana. X

 

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