Whether it’s Christmas in December or a pretend Christmas in July, I am all for an excuse to get together to eat great food.
Australia’s Christmas is in summer so stories of Santa’s sleigh zooming through snowy forests are a faraway fantasy. Many Australians still pine for a white, wintry Christmas though, so a mid-year Christmas party is quite popular. I’ve put together a warming and festive menu to suit. Make merry and enjoy!
This elegant and party-friendly spin on a classic martini begins with a colourful, tasty rhubarb syrup that’s spiked with saffron. Then we add our pink potion to gin and vermouth and turn it into a chilled, stirred martini. It’s such a nice drink!
Chai spiced tea is lovely and warming but turning it into a hot toddy is even better! Just add a roaring log fire, some fluffy slippers and a board game or book to complete the cosy picture. See the Variation at the bottom of the recipe!
These are my go-to bread rolls for burgers, barbecues, school lunches and dunking into delicious soup. I love how easy they are: once the dough is kneaded, you shape the bread, pop it in a low oven and then crank it up. That is, you don’t touch the bread again until it’s fluffy and hot and ready to rip into!
The Pumpkin Soup method is interesting but it’s the Virtual Bacon Dust that is the real thrill in this George Calombaris recipe. It tastes just like bacon, but no pigs were harmed in its creation. Just three ingredients lead to a mind-bending taste explosion. Try it on scrambled eggs for a festive brunch, too.
This classic French peasant dish is simple and clean and presents elegantly. The name translates as ‘beef on a string’ because, in the traditional version, the beef fillet is tied and suspended in a pot of simmering stock. Using Thermomix, we can get exactly the same result without any string sorcery. I love it in summer because you can serve it cool, but it’s great in winter served warm.
A green leafy salad is the perfect complement to any meal and in any season. This salad is made extra special by using bitter greens loved up with a luxurious truffle vinaigrette.
Aligot is a French-style mash that doesn’t quite know if it’s cheesy mash or potatoey cheese. Think equal quantities of dairy and spud combined in a wonderful romance. It’s ooey-gooey delicious and you need it in your life…probably not every day, but definitely for your winter Christmas!
There’s just one catch with these oozy chocolate puddings – if you’re making them, you must invite me over. People always tell me how easy these are to make (lots of kids make them!) and how incredibly impressive and delicious they are. Go on, don’t you deserve them as a Christmas-in-July present?
Winter is wonderful when you have sticky, saucy, moist and springy pecan pie puddings in your life! This recipe is inspired by American pecan pie, taking the same flavours and turning them into an easy Varoma pudding.
Christmas in July Gifts
My Entertaining cookbook is full of delicious recipes packaged into 13 themed menus that will allow you to gracefully create stunning dinner parties, celebrations and occasions. You’ll be the host with the most if you’re the cook with the book. There’s even a Christmas chapter!