I have found a window of time to start my Christmas Baking. This is the list of things I hope to achieve this afternoon and tonight:
- Christmas cake to post to Rod's family
- 100's and 1000's biscuits in festive shapes to take to Tom's last day at sport tomorrow
- Christmas pud preparations
- Marinate some feta cheese
I'll write as I cook. The laptop is perched on the microwave, perfect height to stand and type! I actually haven't been using the microwave for anything else lately... but that's another post entirely.
Let me start by pointing out that it's HOT in Brisvegas today. Not just hot, it's HHHHOOOOOTTTTTTT, and our air-conditioner needs a service... or a clean... or something. I did buy two fans that I've placed at either end of my poorly designed L-shaped heat trap of a kitchen, which the air-conditioner never reached anyway.
They make a difference I must say. Changed the weather forcast in the kitchen from 'STINKIN'' to 'balmy'.
So, number one on my list is a Christmas cake for Rod's family which I'll send in the post as we have Christmas with my family this year. I plan to make my mum's boiled fruit cake made Christmasy by putting nuts on the top.... we'll see how it comes out. Rod's mum suffers from allergies to many foods so the only fruit I'm using is sultanas and as much as my fingers are ITCHING to add a splash of rum or other dried fruits and nuts, it's best that I don't. I'm custom making this cake for my mother-in-law who usually doesn't get to eat fruit cake yet I know it's something she really enjoys.
I guess before I start anything I'd better clean the kitchen.... I've been away for the weekend with friends and have come home to a bomb site...
When Mum was pregnant with my sister, this fruit cake was all she ate as it was the only thing she could keep down. It also lasts very well so accompanied us on every camping trip and many picnics. This cake is part of my food history. It needs a tin of crus...... CRUSHED PINEAPPLE! I DON'T HAVE ANY CRUSHED PINEAPPLE!!
Right, so, on to item number 2. 100's and 1000's biscuits for Tom's last day at sport tomorrow. I've given the recipe to these here, and this time plan to use the Christmas Tree cutter...
It's a bit too hot to do a 'roll out and cut' style biscuit but I'll make the dough now and roll and cut tonight when it's cooler and the house is quiet.
While making the dough I cracked an egg from the girls in Chooktopia and it was a DOUBLE YOLKER!!
Great Christmas present! Thanks girls!
OK, the dough is in the fridge and Rod has returned from the shop with the crushed pineapple for the boiled fruit cake.
450g sultanas (mixed fruit- whatever you like)
1 cup of brown sugar
and a 440g tin of CRUSHED PINEAPPLE, juice and all,
all into a saucepan to melt the butter and simmer for a few minutes. I have this on the stove now as I write and the smell is so familiar to me. It's the smell of Mum's kitchen when I was growing up.
I then pour this into another bowl and leave to cool.
While that's cooling I'll sterilise some jars for the feta. Rod and I just flipped over marinated feta when we were holidaying on Hamilton Island. It was just a supermarket brand but had such a great flavour that we ate it on toast, on crackers, in pasta dishes, with our fingers, in salads. It wasn't until the end of the week that we actually looked at the price and realised that in 7 days we'd eaten $36 worth of marinated feta. Needless to say I arrived home a few kilos heavier than I left.
I'm cubing some Greek feta (tossed up going with the softer variety, but decided on Greek in the end) and putting it in a jar with fresh rosemary, thyme, pepper corns and some garlic then filling the jar with olive oil. I'll post a photo tomorrow.
Also a photo of the boiled fruit cake and what I did to finish it off.
It's all a work in progress, and looking back to the list at the start of this post I realise that I haven't started the pud prep. Another day.