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‘Tis the season to be jolly! I adore everything about the Christmas period, from the cheerful music to the festive drinks and delicious food. I hope you enjoy the recipes this week that celebrate Christmas gastronomy!
Sticky toffee coffee
Warm yourself up this winter with this comforting coffee. It is super quick to make and, therefore, perfect for when you are time strapped in the morning.
Serves: 1 | Prep time: 5 minutes
1 tablespoon toffee syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee
- In a mug pour in the toffee syrup and vanilla extract.
- Scoop a heaped teaspoon of coffee and add hot water.
- Lastly, stir in the milk to your taste and enjoy your festive caffeine booster!
The centrepiece meat served during Christmas dinners will vary for families, some enjoy beef, others pork and for many turkey is their traditional choice. Therefore, cooking up a Christmas-y main that satisfies everyone is tricky. This pie though, is a winning dish, because who doesn’t like pie?
Serves: 10-12 slices | Prep time: 5 minutes
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, finely chopped
500g sausage meat
1 lemon, grated zest
100g fresh white breadcrumbs
85g dried apricots, chopped
50g chestnuts, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh thyme
500g chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
500g ready-made short crust pastry
beaten egg, for glazing
- Set the oven to 190°C. Next heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and the butter in a frying pan. Then throw in the onion frying until translucent and leave to cool slightly.
- In a bowl combine the apricots, breadcrumbs, cranberries chestnuts, lemon zest, sausage meat and thyme. Then add the onion mixture and mix everything together with your hands, adding plentiful of pepper and a little salt.
- Slice each chicken breast into three fillets lengthwise and season with salt and pepper. Then with the leftover oil, fry the chicken fillets until browned.
- Roll out two-thirds of the pastry and line a 20-23cm deep-based tart tin. Cover the pastry base with half the sausage mix. Next add the chicken pieces and then layer on top the remaining sausage mix.
- Now roll out the remaining pastry and assemble a pastry lid, pinching the edges to seal. Then brush the top of the pie with a beaten egg.
- Place the tin on a baking sheet and bake between 50 to 60 minutes, then cool in the tin for 15 minutes.
- Remove the pie from the tin and serve up your scrummy pie with a side salad.
Recipe inspiration source:
This traditional recipe is a timeless classic. Once you’ve baked this mouth-watering treat you won’t want to buy it from the shops again!
Serves: approximately 24 shortbread fingers | Prep time: 20 minutes | Bake time: 40 minutes
225g golden caster sugar
450g plain flour
225g rice flour
pinch of salt
golden caster sugar, for sprinkling
- Heat the oven to 190°C. Then cover an ungreased baking tray with parchment paper.
- Mix the two flours and then add salt. Then sift this mixture at least twice, preferably three times.
- Cream butter and sugar together with a wooden spoon. Next add the sifted ingredients and with your hands mix everything together until you have soft dough.*
- Lightly flour a surface and gently roll out the dough out until it’s about 1/2 inch thick, and rectangular in shape. To make the shortbread fingers, slice the dough into bars and prick the top of each with a fork.
- Place the shortbread fingers on the tray and bake for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180°C and continue to bake until the shortbread is a pale golden. This varies between 20 minutes to 40 minutes, as it is dependant on the thickness of the shortbread and your oven. Basically the aim is for the shortbreads to have a lovely pale gold colour!
- Let the shortbreads cool on the tray. Once completely cooled they are ready to be stored and shared with your loved ones… that is if you can resist scoffing them first!
*Tip: Try not to over mix the dough, as it will toughen it. The less you handle the mixture the better your shortbread will turn out. The great tasting shortbreads are buttery and crumbly, yet delicate.
Recipe inspiration sources: