The most wonderful time of the year indeed
I’m probably going to write a lot about Christmas, as I get older I find myself looking forward to it more and more although the reasons have changed dramatically since the years of excitement over a selection box and hoping that some Matchmakers might appear on Christmas Day.
I’ve been digging into my advent calendar each day with childlike joy and stuffing my face with a treat as I walk out of the door each morning, we make our own calendars and this year mine has Lindt Noisettes and Raffaello’s. I attempted to fill Jordan’s with Pick & Mix but the original calendar I ordered didn’t arrive in time so I crafted one but it is a little too small for all of the sweets I purchased so he got a bag of those too which kind of spoiled the surprise.
Christmas for me starts with lists, it’s the only way I can be organised but it also makes me look forward to all the things that are coming up. Whilst plans are still being confirmed for the day itself, here are a few food based things I’m already looking forward to (a list of course!)
- Thai Food and Gin Night: We have some friends coming over this weekend and will be making some Thai food from scratch for dinner, we do this quite often after taking a Thai cooking class whilst in Phuket last year. The class itself was incredible and included a tasting tour around a local market, we went home with a raft of recipes and are lucky enough that we can get all of the ingredients we need from the Bullring Indoor Market or from Wing Yip . We have some new Gins to try out after our Good Food Show visit too.
- We have been watching the BBC series Nigella: At my Table and have mostly enjoyed it. The recipes themselves are quite tempting and there seems to be a move away from the gratuitous leering camera shots than there has been in the past (not entirely gone but improved) Nigella is TV Food Royalty in my opinion and I will forever be envious of her linguistic skills. I’m planning on giving the Passionfruit Ice Cream Cake a go this weekend
- Thermomix Experiments: We got our Thermomix this year so this will be the first time we get to use it over the Christmas period. I’m going to have a go at making a Mirror Glaze for the Christmas Cake instead of my normal method of decorating which is to make a variety of Christmas/Winter themed animals to sit atop it. I’m also going to have another shot at making macaroons
- Christmas Carrots: This is a Tom Kerridge recipe that Jordan makes for us each Christmas and they are incredible. The amount of butter makes them indulgent and the Star Anise adds a touch of festive spice without overpowering the rest of the dinner
- Cheese, Cheese and more cheese: We do tend to eat a fair amount of cheese anyway and despite stocking up at the BBC Good Food Show we will be ordering from a George Mewes Cheese Shop in Glasgow as we visited earlier this year and both the produce and service was incredibly good. We have also already snagged a Stilton from Tesco that we tried last year, it comes with a Port glaze in a little ceramic tub and we left this, half eaten at a friend’s house last year and I was truly devastated
- Cookbooks!: We tend to ask for books each year but have found quite a few we would like so the list is a little longer this year. It ranges from the new Jamie Oliver book for quick weeknight dinner inspiration to Brae as we will be visiting next year as part of our Australia trip
- Gadgets: One of the things I’m really keen on is a smoke gun, I’ve debated it for too long now and think its something we would put to good use. I like the idea of smoking my own garlic and mozzarella in particular.
- Christmas Eve Curry: This is something I’ve done for many years but I’ve always liked the idea of having ‘non-Christmas’ food on Christmas eve. This year we are visiting Purnima , our favourite local Indian restaurant with some friends. I tend to like a big meal on Christmas Eve as I don’t tend to have breakfast the following morning and it helps me sleep but its also nice to have a very different meal from what will come over the following days.
- Oysters: We are having a treat this year, we are still looking at our options but it looks like Loch Fyne will be our choice after staying there earlier this year and going to their first restaurant. The quality was excellent and I’m excited about shucking my first oyster!
- Boxing Day: Probably my favourite day as our family adopt a ‘Do as you feel’ mentality which loosely translates to a full english breakfast in the morning, staying in PJ’s all day, endless cups of tea and then a buffet style dinner with hot leftover meats, prawns, chips, warm bread, pickles, cheeses, baked camembert, salad and pretty much what ever ‘Christmas’ food my mom has picked up that year. We generally cover the table in food and then trip back and forth from the kitchen throughout the evening to top up our plates whilst watching a film in the living room. We dont tend to drink much as a family but this is when I might have a Disarrono, Frangelico or maybe a couple of G&T’s
Obviously Christmas Dinner is the highlight but lets face it, that deserves a post of its own.