Monday, October 31, 2011

Summer is approaching - and so is Christmas!

I hate to remind you that we are in the lead up to Christmas, but in Christchurch the week after the Melbourne Cup is always our New Zealand Trotting Cup and Show Week, and once that’s over - its Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!

I had my Christmas cooking class last weekend so I have been working on the recipes over the past few weeks. A really good thing to do as soon as you have read this, is to make your Fruit Mince and jar it up for use later. This allows the flavours to develop really well. You can use store bought but this is so much better and really easy to make, so why would you? Just keep a cup aside and try this slice recipe as well, because it’s absolutely delicious! It came from the grandmother (Neddy) of one of our chefs.

Christmas Fruit Mince
Yield 1.5kg
4 Granny Smith apples, cored, peeled and chopped
2 cup raisins
1 cup currants
150g butter
2 teaspoons mace
2 teaspoons nutmeg
3 teaspoons spice
2 teaspoons ground cloves
2 cups brown sugar
100ml brandy
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
100ml lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Simmer partly covered with lid for 30-40 minutes or until thick. Pour into clean, sterilised jars. Cover when cold.

Neddy’s Christmas Mince Slice

100g chilled butter
½ cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
Process butter, flour and sugar until breadcrumb consistency and press into lined slice tin. Bake at 160ÂșC for 10 minutes.
1 cup brown sugar (not packed)
¼ cup flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup coconut
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 cup fruit mince
Mix dry ingredients well and add wet ingredients. Place over base and cook for a further 30 minutes. Cool completely before cutting
Dust with icing sugar to serve.


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