A Unique Christmas Menu that Everyone Will Love
For those that love good food, the magic of Christmas doesn’t lie in the presents or even in the family that gathers around the table – it instead lies in the creativeness of the Christmas dinner menu.
They say that the fondest of memories are made at the table, and if you were to close your eyes and think back to last year, chances are you’ll remember exactly what you ate. Good food has a habit of sticking around in people’s minds, especially when that food is a little left field.
If making your dinner menu memorable is your goal this Christmas, why not try this unique Christmas menu, that perfectly combines both traditional and unorthodox ideas:
Aperitif – Bloody Mary Shots with Horseradish
700ml tomato juice
1 lemon, juiced
Vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
½ cucumber, cut into 10 sticks
10 x shot glasses
- Mix tomato juice, lemon and vodka in a jug and add a good dash of both tabasco and worcestershire sauce.
- Season, then chill.
- Divide amongst shot glasses, add a cucumber stick as a stirrer, and finish with ½ tsp of creamed horseradish.
Entree – Cranberry Brie Bites
Image and recipe via Tablespoon
1 packet frozen puff pastry (thawed)
1 cup cranberry sauce
2 x muffin trays
- Preheat oven to 190°C.
- Take a sharp knife and cut pastry sheets into 3 inch x 3 inch squares. Press each square into a muffin cavity.
- Cut the brie into small cubes and place a cube into the centre of each pastry cup. Top with a small dollop of cranberry sauce.
- Bake in oven for 10 minutes or until the corners of the puff pastry are lightly browned.
- Cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Main – One Pan Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with Blue Cheese and Poached Pears
Image and recipe via The Every Girl
2 x 1.5kg pork tenderloin
8 x bosc pears, diced
8 x shallots, sliced
4 tbs salted butter
1 tsp black pepper
8 cups white wine
2 cups crumbled blue cheese
12 sprigs of rosemary
4 tbs olive oil
2 cups chicken broth
10 x 6 inch pieces of butcher’s twine
Large oven safe pan or casserole dish with lid
- Preheat oven to 210°C.
- Melt butter in a large oven-safe pan or casserole dish. Add the shallots and season, stirring for 2 minutes.
- Add pear and white wine. Leave to simmer until the liquid has absorbed and the pears are translucent (about 12 minutes).
- Meanwhile, slice the pork tenderloins down the centre and lay flat. Spoon pear mix into the centre, top with crumbled blue cheese, and finish with rosemary sprigs.
- Tie the pork together using the twine until it is closed.
- In the same pan or dish, heat oil over medium heat. Once hot, season pork and sear for 2-3 minutes. Rotate to ensure all sides are browned.
- Place lid on pan and bake tenderloins in the oven for 12-15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and rest tenderloins for 5 minutes before slicing.
- Meanwhile, add the chicken broth to the pot and simmer over medium heat, scraping the bottom to release any brown bits. Leave to thicken for 5 minutes.
- Lay two slices of tenderloin on a plate for each guest and top with the chicken sauce.
Sides – Parmesan Roasted Potatoes
Image and recipe via Layers of Happiness
10 baking potatoes
¾ cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup minced onion
6 cloves garlic, minced
Large round shallow dish
- Preheat oven to 210°C and wash and dry potatoes.
- Using a sharp knife, thinly slice potatoes (about ⅛ inch thick).
- Arrange the potato slices standing up in the dish. Generously season with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and rosemary.
- Sprinkle over the minced garlic, onion and cheese.
- Squeeze ¾ of the juice from a lemon over the potatoes and drizzle with olive oil.
- Bake for 1 hour 20 minutes, checking regularly after one hour.
Side – Green Beans with Cranberries and Almonds
Recipe via Lick Your Own Bowl
600g green beans
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup slivered, natural almonds
3 tbsp grapeseed oil
Fleur de sel (French sea salt)
Fresh black pepper
- Place cranberries in a bowl and cover with just enough hot water. Leave to soak for 5-10 minutes.
- Heat oil in a wok, add beans, and stir-fry for 3 minutes or until bright green.
- Add cranberries with their water and stir until the water has mostly evaporated.
- Add almonds, toss for one minute, season and then serve.
Dessert – Sticky Date Christmas Pudding
Image and recipe via Taste
150g mixed dried fruit
½ cup brandy
1.5 cups pitted dates, chopped
1 cup hot water
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Melted butter, to grease
200g unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups self-raising flour
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ginger
Thickened cream, to serve
Spiced caramel sauce
300ml thickened cream
1 cup brown sugar
50g unsalted butter
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp mixed spice
Medium size bowl
Medium size heatproof bowl
2L pudding basin
- Combine mixed fruit and brandy in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave overnight in the fridge to macerate.
- In a heatproof bowl, combine dates, bicarbonate soda and water. Set aside for 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 180.
- Grease a pudding basin with melted butter and line the base with non-stick baking paper.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well between each one.
- Fold in brandy mixture, date mixture, flour and spices until combined.
- Spoon into the basin, smooth the surface, and bake for 1 hour 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and leave in basin for 10 minutes before turning out onto a serving platter.
- Meanwhile, combine cream, sugar, butter, ginger and mixed spice in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally for 2 minutes until smooth. Simmer for 5 minutes to thicken sauce.
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Mireille Kilgour has been an entrepreneur for 35 years in the hospitality sector. French born, she has been an accomplished business owner and operator for a number of Sydney venues. Leading the industry with high profile institutions such as Lamrock Café Bondi, she has endless passion for the industry, and now has the pleasure of supporting restaurants to fill their tables with the new Good Food Gift Card program.