1. Iced tea Prosecco
For some fun, add some Christmas baubles.
Serve in a large glass vase with frozen or fresh berries and crushed ice.
4 gin berry-infused tea bags
2 cups chilled ginger ale
4 t honey
3 T lemon juice
1 bottle chilled Prosecco ICE
1. Infuse the tea bags in the ginger ale for 5 minutes, then remove. Mix with the honey and lemon juice.
2. Pour into a vase or punch bowl and add ice and berries if using. Just before serving, pour in the Prosecco.
3. If you prefer to make individual cocktails, half-fill Champagne flutes with the tea mixture and pour in Prosecco.
If you prefer, use Lautus De-Alcoholised sparkling wine.
2. Easy entertaining wreath
This is a great snacking idea to nibble on before the main event. Choose an extra-large platter or board to serve.
Making a wreath shape
Scatter around some baby leaves or rocket.
Top with antipasto platter meats, deli chargrilled artichokes, a selection of olives and edible flowers.
Complete your wreath with a range of dips. We used red pepper hummus.
If you like, add some thinly sliced and peeled or chunks of ripe sweet spanspek or watermelon. Serve with Melba toast and crackers.
3. Festive blackened salmon
Serves 6 to 8
Preparation: 1 hour
Cooking: 30 minutes
230 g light brown sugar
1 cup dark soya sauce
1 cup water
¾ cup orange juice
¾ cup dry white wine
175 ml rice vinegar
¾ cup honey
75 g fresh ginger, crushed
1 t ground allspice
1 t coriander seeds, crushed
1 t Szechuan pepper, crushed
1 medium red chilli
3 spring onions, roughly chopped
6 cloves garlic, bruised
1 orange , thickly sliced
1 green apple, quartered
1 x 10 cm piece daikon radish
6 red garden radishes
1 salmon side, boned and skin on
1 T canola oil
1 x 4 cm piece fresh ginger , finely chopped
citrus wedges, for serving
1. To make the glaze, place all the ingredients into a large saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook over a medium heat until reduced by two-thirds to make about 1 cup. Strain and set aside.
2. For the salmon, peel and shave the vegetables very finely using a mandolin slicer to make long, thin matchsticks. Place in iced water to crisp for 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
3. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Rub the top of the salmon with 2 T glaze. Heat a large pan into which the salmon will can fit until very hot and add the oil. Place the salmon, skin side up, into the hot pan and cook for 2–3 minutes until well caramelised and blackened. Turn over and cook on the skin side for 2–3 minutes. Transfer to a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 15 minutes until just done, but still pink in the centre.
4. Remove from the oven and place the fish onto a large serving platter.
5. Generously spoon over more of the glaze and top with the crisp shaved vegetables, ginger and radish. Serve immediately.
Cook’s note: The glaze can be stored in the fridge for several months and is delicious as a dip for vegetable rolls, stir-fries and as a sticky Asian BBQ baste. The shaved vegetables can be made a day in advance and kept in an airtight container in the fridge. This can be served warm or cold. Make the dressing up to 2 days before to free up some time. Serve with whole wheat vermicelli noodles.
4. Smashed cucumber salad
1 cucumber, cut into chunks
2 T apple cider vinegar
2 T olive oil
1 T fish sauce
½ cup cashews, toasted and crushed
salt, to taste
Smash the cucumber using mortar and pestle, then place on a platter. Top with the vinegar, olive oil, fish sauce, cashews and seasoning and with fresh herbs such as coriander, mint and basil.
5. Roasted and stuffed turkey
Preparation: 25 minutes
Cooking: 3 hours 35 minutes
For the stuffing:
2 T olive oil
2 T butter
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
250g brown mushrooms, chopped
2 x 100 g packets Woolworths Christmas herb stuffing with ancient grains
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
10 shallots, halved
4 T butter, cubed
salt, to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. For the stuffing, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan, then add the garlic and mushrooms and cook until soft, this should take about 15 minutes. Add the herb stuffing and combine. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Place the shallots on a baking tray. Stuff the turkey with the stuffing, place on a baking tray, cover with the butter and season with salt. Roast for 2–3 hours or until the skin is crispy and caramelised.
Cook’s note: Stuff the turkey the day before if you like. Serve with warmed black cherry-and-brandy preserve or berry-and-Port glaze.
6. Tenderstem broccoli with smoky Hollandaise
For the Hollandaise:
2 T white wine vinegar
3 T cold water
3 free-range egg yolks
250 g clarified butter
½ lemon, juiced
3 drops Woolworths smoke extract
salt, to taste
500 g Tenderstem broccoli
white pepper, to taste
lemon wedges, for serving
1. To make the Hollandaise, combine the vinegar and 2 T water in a small saucepan. Cook over a high heat until reduced to 1 T. Remove from the heat and add the remaining water.
2. Place in a bowl and add the egg yolks. Using an electric beater, beat the mixture until thick and creamy.
3. Place the bowl over a small pot of simmering water. Whisk in 1 T clarified butter at a time until well incorporated. When all the butter has been incorporated, season with lemon juice, smoke extract and salt.
4. Blanch the broccoli, this should take 5–10 minutes.
5. Season the broccoli and warm Hollandaise with white pepper and serve with fresh lemon wedges.
Cook’s note: If you like, you can substitute the Tenderstem with green beans, asparagus or Brussels sprouts or even a mixture.
7. Cheese platter
Pile a platter of berries with torn pieces of St Andre or St Louis cheese drizzled with blueberry Merlot glaze, mascarpone wreath with spicy cherry, cranberries and nuts. Serve with the warm sourdough wreath and or slices of stollen. You can also bake the wreaths with a Camembert in the middle and drizzle over some honey. Serve at room temperature.
8. Chocolate showstopper table
This is about embellishing readymade products for your chocolate dessert celebration table.
Place a selection of cakes, trifles and chocolate mince pies onto platters lined with gold tissue paper and cake stands/platters.
Use some greenery and some ribbons to decorate.
Make a wreath or a tower using mince pies and dust with icing sugar and gold sprinkle medley.
- Yule log
- Melting chocolate pedestal chocolate trifle
- Millionaire’s fruit mince pies
- Chocolate pine cones
- Chocolate petit-fours
Cheese cake kit: Assemble the cheese cake kit to serve with the cheese table, the cheese table is served with dessert.
100 ml Espresso
3 drops Almond extract
1 cup Nutella
1 cup Creme fraiche
2 punnets cherries
Slice the panettone, drizzle with espresso and almond extract, then top with creme fraiche, Nutella and fresh cherries.
When to watch:
You can catch the episode on VIA, DStv channel 147 on:
- 2 December at 8am
- 3 December at 2 pm
- 7 December at 5:30pm
- 9 December at 10pm
- 10 December at 2pm
- 17 December at 2pm
- 18 December at 7pm
- 21 December at 9pm
- 22 December at 9am
- 24 December at 5pm
- 25 December at 1pm and 4pm
- 26 December at 9:30am
Or on Mzanzi Magic, DStv channel 161
- 15 December at 6pm
- 19 December at 10:30pm
- 24 December at 10am