Some highlights from my kitchen over Christmas.
Last year I was very well organised and wrote a guide for Christmas food for one or two people. This year was loosely based on that but went adrift a bit and there was a bit too much food waste in the end.
Christmas Eve I went bellringing at St Marys and stayed for 9 Lessons and Carols, which was all lovely. The plan was to have the oven working on baked potatoes whilst I was out, but on my return I discovered I had set the oven to come on but left the spuds on the side. I also realised walking from the church to the car that I’d completely forgotten about cauliflower cheese. The plan was to buy frozen free flow, but that hadn’t been available so I just moved on. I was able to duck into Sainsburys on Clumber Street (how long has there been a Sainsburys on Clumber street?!) and pick up… a head of broccoli. So far, so close.
Anyway, home to the preheated, empty oven which I added a large bacon joint, made broccoli cheese from scratch, and microwaved the jacket spuds and finished in the oven.
And it turns out microwaved jackets are not as bad as previously thought.
Christmas morning was also bellringy; on return I opened this pint size bottle of fizzy Italian cider in place of the usual Norman fizzy bottle. (500ml rather than 587 and bought before the all the daft wiffle about pint size champagne from Downing Street)
Turns out the cider was quite a bit stronger than the usual barely-more-alcoholic-than-apple-juice and I subsequently lost a bit of Christmas day to napping. Lunch was… a tray of pigs in blankets…
and after one of the Die Hards in the evening I used pre-Christmas duck fat to sauté cubes of spuds to have with steak, frozen greens, and creamy mushroom sauce, plating shortly before midders.
A few days later we hosted friends chez T and we ate…
A tray of bulgur salad with chick peas, celery and red peppers
Homemade smoked mackerel pâté on slices of cucumber (variably sliced… some way to thin to support a quenelle of pâté)
A tray of puff-based canapés as described this Eurovision hors-d’oeuvres post…
… except I timed it slightly wrong and burned the tomatoes beyond all hope of recovery
So much trifle
a litre of jelly,
no sherry because children present, a block of off-brand Ambrosia zhuzhed up with some gelatin to try and get it to set.