It has all gone by so quickly and just like that, another Christmas day has past (although I'm a firm believer that there are 12 days of Christmas, like the song stated). I love Christmas and to me it means more than just the pressies, they might be nice but it's the idea of being with your loved ones and enjoying all the good food that truly makes this a magical time of the year.
As a tradition for Christmas, homemade mince pies are a must. Last year, I made some quick and easy mince balls but this time round, I painstakingly rolled out my egg yolk enriched sweet shortcrust pasty, cut and moulded into the muffin baking tray. Each case is then filled with some fresh batch of brandy-infused mincemeat that I made days beforehand and top with a thin layer of pastry lid. After a light brush of milk, these were then baked in the oven. A dusting of icing sugar transformed these into a snow topped crumbly treats. Aww...nothing beats the smell and the taste of a homemade mince pies.
Keeping with the tradition of my household, I decided to go for yet another barbecue turkey this year. The weather was definitely against me as I woke up to a gloomy morning, it had rained throughout the night since Christmas eve and threatened to continue well into the day. But the defiant spirit in me meant nothing could faltered my determination to chuck the pre-butter rubbed, bacon-blanketed bird onto a BBQ.
Watching the sky like a hawk with bag of coals in one hand. Once I detected the rain easing off a tad, I quickly lit the coals and got the barbecue going, all the while trying every effort known to mankind to hold off the rain. If my neighbours had saw me then, what will they be thinking! A crazy Chinese man doing the rain dance (or no-rain dance in this case) in the garden, chanting the 'Rain rain go away, come again another day' mantra.
Lord and behold, it worked! The rain ceased and the glorious sun decided to temporary peep through the gloomy rain clouds, busking the garden with a spot of well needed sunshine. It's a Christmas miracle! (Yes, I'm that easily pleased)
Once the fire had dies down and the coals were glowing, it's time for the majestic Norfolk Bronze to hop onto the sizzling grill, lid on, for a solitary grilling to gain that healthy glowing tan.
Along with the juicy BBQ turkey, were the usual suspects of pigs in blankets, stuffing balls and crunchy goose fat roasted potatoes. There were also sweet roasted parsnip that have been coated in maple syrup and panfried Brussels sprouts, green beans, shiitake mushroom with a dash of pomegranate molasses. And gravy? Of course!
It was a very full-filled Christmas lunch.
So that's my Christmas done and dusted for another year, there's still tonnes of mince pies to be polished off but now it's onto the New Year celebration. Bring on the wine and alcohol and let's get this party started.....!!