Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Port

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One of my favourite things about Christmas dinner is the cranberry sauce. I know that might sound a little strange when there are also loads of other treats on the table and don't get me wrong I do also get excited about a good turkey, perfect roast potatoes and the best ever brussles sprouts.

However, not only is the cranberry sauce one of the prettiest dishes on the table it also adds the extra special Christmas factor in my opinion and it just goes so well with everything. Even once the meal is over I enjoy it for days to come (if there is enough of it) with cheese, pate, pork or game pie. My mouth is watering just thinking about it and even better since I know that there is a bowl of it my fridge right now.

Merry Christmas everyone! Frohe Weihnachten, Joyeux Noel, Feliz Navidad and God Jul!

Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Port

250gr fresh cranberries
1 orange, juice and zest of
100gr sugar
100ml ruby port

Bring the orange juice, zest and cranberries to a boil in a saucepan.

Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 to 10 minutes, until the cranberries become soft.

Add the sugar and ruby port and continue to simmer until the sauce thickens a bit and the berries begin to become pulpy.

Remove from heat and allow to cool a little before pouring into a bowl.

Cover and refridgerate.

Thanks to the sugar and alcohol it'll keep for weeks in the fridge, if you can make it last that long.


Sunday, 20 December 2009

Baked Apples

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I can't believe we're only a week away from Christmas and this is my first December blog post!

This year the usual baking, pickling and cooking that usually comes with the month of December in my kitchen has not happenend. That might be partly due to having been away in New York for a week at the beginning of the month and also the fact that I am already back home at my mum and dad's house in Germany for my annual Christmas break.

It's been freezing cold here the last couple of days. We've seen temperatures of -13C and plenty of snow, which has really helped to get me in a more christmassy mood, which up until now I've been lacking. I've also been out to buy the turkey and all the trimmings for a proper Christmas dinner next week. Yes, I'm spending Christmas in Germany, but there'll be a proper English Christmas dinner at this house nevertheless, and I'm sure there'll be a few recipes to share over the next few weeks because of it.

For now I'll leave you with a recipe of Baked Apples, which my mum and I tried today, after she spotted it in a amagazine last night. It was the perfect treat to have whilst watching the snow being blown about outside!

Baked Apples with Marzipan serves 4

4 medium sized red apples
60gr marzipan paste, chopped up finely
4tbsp cashew nuts, chopped roughly (we used chopped almonds)
2tbsp raisins
rum, calvados or cointreau

Soak your raisins in some rum, calvados or cointreau.

Preheat your oven to 180C.

Wash and decore your apples.

Cut a slice of the top of the apple and carefully remove most of the flesh, until you are left with a shell that's roughly half an inch thick (1.5cm).

Finely chop the flesh you have removed and place in a small bowl, together with the marzipan, nuts and raisins.

Mix well and then divide and stuff the apples with the mix.

Place the stuffed apples on a baking tray and bake in the oven for half an hour, until soft.

Serve with custard or vanilla ice cream.