I love Christmas, it is my most favourite time of year. I love the build up with the decorations in the stores, carols being played, decorating the tree, tinsel, all of it.
And it wouldn't be Christmas without a visit to the Kirkcaldies Christmas shop in Lambton Quay. It's such a magical place to visit. I know children love it but so do I. If you haven't taken your child, or yourself, do yourself a favour and go along, you will not be disappointed.
With about only 10 and a bit weeks until Christmas, this got me thinking about Christmas Day dinner. Are you a traditionalist? Are you making your own traditions, but still with a bit of a hint of the traditional? Are you completely over all that and doing the bbq at the beach (if you are lucky enough to live somewhere where it's warm enough, Wellington weather is too fickle for that).
I have to admit, I am a bit of traditionalist, but not entirely. It's usually way too hot to do the full-on roast but I do so love hot ham on the bone, and of course turkey. And really, who doesn't love crunchy roasted potatoes, or of course little baby new potatoes cooked so they are just tender and then tossed in butter and mint! Yum. Even better of course is digging them up from the garden on Christmas morning. I hope my spuds work this year. They didn't last year, or the year before. I don't know what I did wrong but every set of fingers in the house are crossed this year for uber-fresh new potatoes.
But if it is a lovely hot day, a roast isn't really that comfortable to cook or to eat. Maybe it is time I cut the symbolic cord with olde England and prepared cool salads, fresh seafood and leave behind the hot roast. It would be so nice to cook seafood but the cost is a little prohibitive for a lot of us at this time of year with all the other expense. Mind you, turkey and ham isn't exactly cheap so I guess I could swap one for the other. A ham is in the region of about $90 and a turkey not too far behind so I am sure I could probably buy some great fresh seafood for those sorts of dollars.
And what about pudding? Do you like traditional Christmas pudding with all that fruit, and custard? Not for me thanks. Or how about pavlova, trifle and mince pies? I have never been a big fan of Christmas mince pies or pudding. I am not a big sweet fan at all, I don't usually bother with pudding, but plenty do so you have to provide it.
But again, that's the old traditional kind of heavy desserts so maybe I need to start trolling through all the old magazines and cook books for something a little different. Perhaps something that is a little more reflective of a hot NZ summer (note I said NZ, not Wellington), maybe some icey sorbets or even just fresh fruit?
No, I hear you cry, must have pudding and custard. I might just ask the family what they think would be nice, better to cook food people want rather than what you think they might like. Yep, will ask the family tonight what their preferences are.
What's your favourite Christmas lunch or pudding? Do you stick to the traditional food or go for the Kiwi seafood barby on the beach kind of meal? I would love to hear what your favourites are. Maybe you can give me some inspiration for a new improved menu.
Meantime, I shall drag out the decorations and check to make sure all is well and the lights go and nothing is broken. 1st December is not only no.1 daughter's birthday, it's the day the tree goes up and the carols start a-playing (much to the disgust of the males in the house). Don't laugh, there are only (when this was written) 76 sleeps before our friend in the red suit pays us a visit, so that's 10 and a bit weeks. Start getting ready because it starts to fly by from now on.
Ohhhhh, deck the halls with boughs of holly, fa la la la la la la la la...enjoy.
- Kapi-Mana News