Get ready to taste Christmas!
It’s about time we head to the kitchen and put together some fun and heavenly Christmas delicacies. StyleCracker adds to your christmas feast the tricks of making the yummiest Christmas desserts from our list of celebrity chef recipes!
JAMIE OLIVER’S MULLED WINE
Two hundred grams caster sugar
Six whole cloves
One stick cinnamon
Three fresh bay leaves
One whole nutmeg, for grating
One vanilla pod, halved lengthways
Two star anise
Two bottles Italian red wine
1. Let the spices cook away in a pot and warm up gently so the flavours have time to mingle with the wine. Leave the mulled wine ticking over on a really low heat and just ladle some into glasses as and when guests pop in.
2. Peel large sections of peel from your clementines, lemon and lime using a speed peeler. Put the sugar in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the pieces of peel and squeeze in the clementine juice. Now add the cloves, cinnamon stick, bay leaves and about ten to twelve gratings of nutmeg.
3. Throw in your halved vanilla pod and stir in just enough red wine to cover the sugar.
4. Let this now simmer until the sugar has completely dissolved into the red wine and then bring to the boil. Keep on a rolling boil for about four to five minutes, or until you’ve got a beautiful thick syrup.
5. Once the syrup is ready, turn the heat down to low and add your star anise and the rest of the wine.
6. Gently heat the wine and after around five minutes, when it’s warm and delicious, ladle it into glasses and serve!
DELIA SMITH’S MINCE PIE
560 grams of mincemeat
350 grams plain flour
75 grams lard
75 grams butter
A pinch of salt
1. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
2. Make up the pastry by sifting the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and rubbing the fats into it until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Then add just enough cold water to mix to a dough that leaves the bowl clean.
3. Leave the pastry to rest in a polythene bag in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes, then roll half of it out as thinly as possible and cut it into two dozen three inch rounds, gathering up the scraps and re-rolling.
4. Do the same with the other half of the pastry, this time using the two and a half inch cutter.
5. Now grease the patty tins lightly and line them with the larger rounds. Fill these with mincemeat to the level of the edges of the pastry. Dampen the edges of the smaller rounds of pastry with water and press them lightly into position to form lids, sealing the edges.
6. Brush each one with milk and make three snips in the tops with a pair of scissors. Bake near the top of the oven for 25-30 minutes until light golden brown.
7. Cool on a wire tray and sprinkle with icing sugar.
8. When cool, store in an airtight container.
PANKAJ BHADOURIA’S PLUM CAKE
300 grams flour
250 grams sugar
250 grams butter
50 grams raisins
50 grams candied papaya
50 grams dates
50 grams candied orange peel
50 grams candied sweet line peel
50 grams glazed cherries
50 grams toasted almonds
Half a tablespoon caramel color
Half a tablespoon baking powder
One tablespoon vanilla essence
Four tablespoon cooking rum
One inch Cinnamon stick
Half a nutmeg
1. Soak the raisins in rum over night.
2. Chop the raisins, nuts and all candied fruits. Powder the spices together and pass them through a sieve.
3. Beat together the sugar and butter till creamy. Add eggs one at a time beating them continuously.
4. Add the vanilla essence and the spice powder and beat well. Sieve together the flour and the baking powder.
5. Add the cut candied peels, fruits and nuts to the flour and mix well so that all the nuts are coated well with the flour. With a light hand, fold in the flour mixture with the butter and egg mixture.
6. Grease a baking dish and line it with butter paper. Pour the above mixture in the baking dish and bake in a preheated oven at 250 degrees for 10 minutes and then at 22 degrees for two hours or till a skewer, when inserted, comes out clear.
7. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then remove from the pan and allow to cool for two hours.
TAHIRA MATEEN’S HOMEMADE MARZIPAN
Two cups almonds
One cup sugar icing
Half a cup castor sugar
Three large eggs
1. Boil water and add almonds and blanch.
2. Take out, and take off the skin and put to dry.
3. Once the almonds are dried, grind them to make a smooth paste/powder.
4. Mix almonds, icing sugar, castor sugar and eggs together. Knead into a dough.
5. Dust work surface with icing sugar and knead the dough on surface for a few minutes until playable.
6. Mould the dough into a ball, wrap with clingfilm and refrigerate overnight.
7. Use as required, cut out flowers, make little shapes, animals, or objects.
8. Add colour to the dough if required and knead, only then use.
NIGELLA LAWSON’S ULTIMATE CHRISTMAS PUDDING
150 grams currants
150 grams sultanas
150 grams roughly chopped prunes
175 ml pedro ximenez sherry
100 grams plain flour
125 grams fresh breadcrumbs
150 grams suet
150 grams dark brown muscovado sugar
One teaspoon ground cinnamon
One/fourth teaspoon ground cloves
One teaspoon baking powder
Grated zest of 1 lemon
Three large eggs
One medium cooking apple (peeled and grated)
Two tablespoons honey
125 ml vodka (to flame the pudding)
1. Put the currants, sultanas and scissored prunes into a bowl with the Pedro Ximénez, swill the bowl a bit, then cover with clingfilm and leave to steep overnight or for up to one week.
2. When the fruits have had their steeping time, put a large pan of water on to boil, or heat some water in a conventional steamer, and butter your heatproof plastic pudding basin (or basins), remembering to grease the lid, too.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the remaining pudding ingredients (except the vodka), either in the traditional manner or just any old how; your chosen method of stirring, and who does it, probably won’t affect the outcome of your wishes or your Christmas.
4. Add the steeped fruits, scraping in every last drop of liquor with a rubber spatula, and mix to combine thoroughly, then fold in cola-cleaned coins or heirloom charms. If you are at all frightened about choking-induced fatalities at the table, do leave out the hardware.
5. Scrape and press the mixture into the prepared pudding basin, squish it down and put on the lid. Then wrap with a layer of foil so that the basin is watertight, then either put the basin in the pan of boiling water or in the top of a lidded steamer and steam for five hours, checking every now and again that the water hasn’t bubbled away.
6. When it’s had it’s five hours, remove gingerly and, when manageable, unwrap the foil, and put the pudding in its basin somewhere out of the way in the kitchen or, if you’re lucky enough, a larder, until Christmas Day.
7. On the big day, rewrap the pudding in foil and steam again, this time for three hours. Eight hours combined cooking time might seem a faff, but it’s not as if you need to do anything to it in that time.
8. To serve, remove from the pan or steamer, take off the lid, put a plate on top, turn it upside down and give the plastic basin a little squeeze to help un-mould the pudding.
9. Now remove the basin, and voilà, the Massively Matriarchal Mono Mammary is revealed.
10. Put the sprig of holly on top of the dark, mutely gleaming pudding, then heat the vodka in a small pan and the minute it’s hot, but before it boils- turn off the heat, strike a match, stand back and light the pan of vodka, then pour the flaming vodka over the pudding and take it as fast as you safely can to your guests.
11. If it feels less dangerous to you pour the hot vodka over the pudding and then light the pudding.
12. Serve with Eggnog Cream!