I can’t believe Christmas is almost here! I feels like just the other day I was baking gingerbread cookies. My favourite part of Christmas is getting together with friends and family for food. Over the weekend we had a little Christmas party with some friends. While it had been on the books for a couple of weeks as per usual the menu plan was left a bit to the last minute. Never mind my siblings had their normal Saturday sports to go to.
Everyone brought something along and my contribution was four different types of finger food and a cheesecake. My aim was to choose dishes that were easy to prep so I would only be spending a few hours in the kitchen to get it all done.
I have quite a few friends that have dietary conditions so I’ve gotten into the habit of always catering for those conditions. While no one at this party had a dietary condition there was vegetarian, gluten free and dairy free food.
Growing up sausage rolls were never a food a related to Christmas, and it might just be all the vlogmas videos, but I’ve been obsessed with sausage rolls this season. Especially the idea of making them from scratch. I was over the moon about how well they turned out and will definitely try it again!
- 1kg Pork Mince
- 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds
- 1 Carrot
- 1 Large Onion
- 20g breadcrumbs
- 1 Egg
- Puff Pastry Sheets (I used 6)
- 3 Teaspoons crushed garlic
- Salt and Pepper
What to do:
- Ground your fennel seeds using a mortar and pestle, roughly dice the onion and grate your carrot. Make sure that your pastry has been taken out to thaw slightly.
- Heat a pan to a medium heat and fry the garlic, onion and carrot until soft. Let the mixture cool.
- In a large bowl, combine the mince, vegetable mixture, fennel seeds, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. It’s easiest to use your hands to mix. To check that the mixture has enough salt and pepper I cooked a teaspoon of the mixture.
- Grab a handful of the mixture and roll into a large sausage shape. Place the rolled mixture about an inch away from the closest each of the pastry – I used one sheet of pastry per roll. Roll the pastry and keeping going until you have finished all your mixture.
- Cut the rolls into your desired sizes – I made 6 per roll. They were a bit small but worked well with all the other bits and pieces to eat.
- I stored these in the fridge until 40min before our guests arrived. You can also freeze some for later.
- To cook – heat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius fan forced. Brush the sausage rolls with egg and cook for 30min or until golden.
I originally was planning on making Mediterranean bites however I found this chilli haloumi and I couldn’t walk away. It worked out really well and wasn’t too spicy so everyone could enjoy!
- I block of haloumi (chilli haloumi if you can find it)
- Olive Oil
- Sundried Tomatoes
What to do:
- Slice the haloumi into bite sized pieces and place between two pieces of paper towel to drain excess liquid. I left it like that for around 30 min.
- Brush the pieces lightly with olive oil on both sides.
- Heat your pan to a medium/high heat. Fry the haloumi for 1-2 Minutes until a crust forms and then turn and repeat. It’s best to cook this just before serving however, you can keep the cooked pieces in a warm oven if needed.
- Top each piece with a sundried tomato and drizzle with the oil from the tomato.
This was my favourite dish of the night. I am a lover pretty much every green vegetable there is so I was already going to like this but I couldn’t stop myself from eating them.
- 2 Bundles of Asparagus
- 100 grams of prosciutto
What to do:
- Wash and trim the asparagus.
- Cut the prosciutto (if wide enough) to two slices.
- Grab three asparagus and wrap with the prosciutto.
- Heat a frying pan to a medium/high heat and lightly coat in olive oil (I used the haloumi pan so I did need to add additional oil). Cook on each side for 1-2 Minutes or until the prosciutto changes colour/ begins to crisp.
- Season with salt and serve.
Smoked Salmon Crackers:
- 100g of Smoked Salmon
- Oat crackers (chilli/pepper, quinoa and sesame)
- 100g Cream cheese
- Fennel leaves or dill
What to do:
These are super simple just spread each cracker with cream cheese, top with a small piece smoked salmon, a couple of capers and the herbs. Finish it off with pepper and a squeeze of lemon.
Baileys and Chocolate Cheesecake:
Cheesecake and I have had a long history of not getting along. I just couldn’t ever get it quite right. That was until I stumbled along this recipe by Cupcake Jemma (of Crumbs and Dollies). This cheesecake is sooooo easy to put together – I made it after dinner the night before and just finished off the decorations and ganache the next afternoon. This was actually a last minute addition because we found some cream cheese on the verge of going off.
I hope you all a magical Christmas filled with lots of amazing food!