This month we are excited to have Melbourne baking legend Phillippa Grogan share some festive recipes and answer some questions about what makes Christmas special to her. Food is such a central part of Christmas celebrations, do you have a favourite Christmas day fare? Oh, so many things to enjoy at this time of year! I love any excuse to enjoy my Caramel Brandy Sauce, I love the Beetroot cured Salmon ( recipe in our brochure) on rye bread with mustard honey dill sauce, and a fruit mince pie always gives me extra energy to help me get through the busy days in the lead up to Christmas. With a cup of tea or coffee it is hard to go past a piece of Stollen!
Can you tell us about your favourite Christmas food memory? My favourite Christmas food memory would have to be coming back to a large three storey farm house after midnight mass in a 700 year old cathedral, Notre Dame du Bourg in Rabastens between Albi and Tolouse for the révelillon which is the midnight Christmas feast. We enjoyed Fois Gras, cheese and champagne. I came from London with my Neal’s Yard Dairy, Colston Basset 1/2 wheel of Stilton and a bottle of Berry Brothers & Rudd port that I poured into the cavity after removing cheese from How will you celebrate Christmas this year? the centre (which I used to make a delicious With my husband, three children, my father, my Stilton and port spread and a Stilton sauce for siblings and their families, perhaps at my house beef). I served this with my oat cakes from Sally this year. Clarke and the French friends I was staying with thought it was wonderful. What would your dream Christmas be? My dream Christmas would definitely be being If you were to find a present for your kitchen able to get away to Europe or South America the under the tree what would it be and why? week before Christmas to see what it’s like to Well if I didn’t already have a fabulous bread not be swept up in the crazy Christmas season, knife, a smoked salmon knife and an oyster but it seems a pipe dream! shucker, I think these make excellent gifts, but for me it would definitely be a teal green Mud serving platter or large bowl or a crumb catcher board.
About Phillippa's Using the best quality natural ingredients and family recipes, Phillippa’s specialises in producing products that are no longer regularly made in the home, keeping alive the art of bread, pastry and preserve making. Founder Phillippa Grogan’s passion for food helped support her through university as she worked in catering while studying for an arts degree at Melbourne University. After living in London for nine years and working at Clarke's, an award-winning, food store and bakery, Phillippa returned home in in 1994 to open her Armadale store. Inspired by family recipes, Phillippa’s bread, pastries and provisions are made just as they would be made in the home using quality natural ingredients giving them a distinctive flavour and texture. Made on site in her Armadale, Brighton and Richmond Bakeries, Phillippa’s also supplies to select Victorian and national stockists.
Phillippa's Butter Shortbread BY PHILLIPPA GROGAN
Every December, in the early weeks before it became too hot, Mum would bake a large batch of shortbread – beautifully rich and buttery. Mum usually shaped her dough into a log and cut discs to save rolling the dough out. If you prefer, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out 5mm thick and cut it into shapes. Each time you gather up the remaining dough after cutting and re roll it, it becomes slightly tougher. Just remember that if you make them thinner than specified in the recipe, you will need to reduce the cooking time. INGREDIENTS
1. Place the butter and sugar in a large bowl and, using an electric hand-held beater, cream for about 5 minutes or until just pale but not fluffy. (This will be faster if you use a free standing mixer) Mix in the flour and salt until the mixture is combined into a smooth, yellow dough. Do not over mix. Roll into a 5 cm thick log, then cut in half and wrap each short log in baking paper. Place on a tray and refrigerate for an hour.
215 g cultured butter, room temperature 95 g caster sugar 270 g plain flour pinch of salt icing sugar, for dusting
2. Preheat the oven to 150°C/140°C fan. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper. 3. U sing a sharp knife, cut into rounds about 5 mm thick. Place on the baking tray, prick with a fork and bake for 20 minutes or until the underside of the shortbread is dry and cooked but not coloured. Allow to cool on the trays for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar before serving. The shortbread will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
Phillippa’s Christmas Pudding BY PHILLIPPA GROGAN
This makes a lighter style pudding which I rather prefer. I am not a fan of the very intensely cooked-fruit flavoured puddings. This one is quite aromatic, made with good fresh spices and homemade candied orange peel. I was given this recipe by a Jocelyn my first baker, but I think it was originally based on Stephanie Alexander’s pudding recipe. I always like plenty of whipped cream and brandy sauce on mine. If you can find suet at your butchers shop you can use this, finely grated, instead of the butter. INGREDIENTS
125g Candied Orange Peel chopped (recipe p.31) 180g sultanas 360g raisins 360g currants 180 g fresh breadcrumbs 180g flour 1½teaspoons ground cinnamon ½ whole nutmeg freshly grated ½ teaspoon table salt 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest 360 g cold unsalted butter 180g brown sugar 100 ml brandy, plus extra to serve 4 eggs 1½ tablespoons lemon Juice 600ml milk
1. Several days to a week before you plan to cook the pudding take a large bowl and mix all the dried fruit and peel together. Add the flour, breadcrumbs, spices and salt mix well with your hands. Add lemon zest, grated butter, sugar, eggs and all the liquids and blend well. Cover and set aside in the fridge for up to 4 days. 2. Lightly grease 3 x 1 litre ceramic pudding bowls with butter and line just the very bottom with a small circle of baking paper. 3. S tir the mixture and spoon it into the pudding bowls and smooth over the surface. Cover the mixture with the large double layered circle of baking paper. Place over this a double layered larger piece of foil, tied tightly just under the rim with string. 4. Keep the string place by lifting the foil upwards, preventing the string from rolling down. 5. You will need a very large heavy based saucepan for each pudding you plan to cook, and in each saucepan you will need to place an old saucer upside down in the saucepan. Place each of the pudding bowls into a saucepan of boiling water, enough to come to 2½cm below the rim of the bowl. Bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer for 6 hours, topping up with boiling water from the kettle as required. 6. R emove the pans from the heat and allow the pudding to cool. Store each pudding in its bowl in a large ziplock bag in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve. 7. To serve, prepare a saucepan with enough boiling water to come ½ way up the side of the bowl. Remove from the bag, replace the paper and foil on the top of the pudding and heat it in its bowl in simmering water for 1 ½-2 hours. 8. For each pudding, gently heat 120 ml of brandy on the stove. (Warning – this is very flammable). Turn the pudding out onto a plate. Carefully pour the hot brandy over, light with a match and present it to the table. 9. Serve with whipped cream, brandy sauce or homemade ice cream. The pudding will store in the fridge for up to 6 months.
As Christmas approaches we look at some of the themes and trends that will inspire the decoration of your table and home this festive season. Naturals, Australian, soft pastels and traditional red will all provide options for you to create the Christmas look of 2019.
From the tree to the table hints of wood are key to creating a 'Natural Christmas' theme. Drawing from scandanavian aesthetic many of the traditional looking pieces will provide a fresh feel for years to come. Combine different textures to create a natural and timeless look.
Sparkle Lightly Soft pastel colours teamed with sparkles of gold and silver create an exciting fresh look for this Christmas. Highly ornate patterns on servingware & decorations create a luxe look for your home.
It's Tradition Red, green & gold is a Christmas staple. Safer than putting a penny in the Christmas pudding you will be able to use these items year after year. The important hint for making this colourway work is don't deviate too much from the key colours.
The Charger Plate - We love charger plates they make setting a table so much easier than a placemat and can add a bit of sparkle to a simple white dinnerset.
The Cutlery- You can never have too much cutlery. Remember to work from the outside in. Soup spoon then entree knife and fork and the dinner knife and fork. We like to place our dessert spoon and fork at the top of the plate. to create extra space between settings. Also don't forget the butter knife, there is nothing more awkward than having to eat your entree with a buttery knife because there wasn't enough cutlery.
Setting the Table
Set the Table
One key to a relaxing Christmas lunch is ensuring Soft pastelyou colours sparkles ofto gold haveteamed plannedwith ahead on how setand the silver Christmas create an exciting thischeat Christmas. table. Sofresh herelook is a for handy sheet Highly to ensure you ornante patterns on servingware & deceorations a and are organised in advance. Pick a themecreate and style luxe look for your home. one week prior to Christmas make sure you have all the necessary components.
Glasses - Something for bubbles, something for red and something for white. Don't forget a water glass as well. The correct glass can make the a good red even better and keep the bubbles effervescing even longer.
The Napkin - Cranberry sauce, gravy, brandy cream let's face it you are going to need a napkin even for tea-totallers Christmas lunch and dinner can get pretty messy. This is also a great place to put your Christmas cracker.
"Lucia never uttered a single word but has spread a more powerful message than most of us will in a lifetime, to truly cherish life. " HELP US SUPPORT A GREAT CAUSE
The Best Gift You Will Give This Christmas Lucia Crinis, just 99 days old, tragically passed away from a rare terminal genetic condition and to honour her and the work of the team at the cardiology ward while raising desperately needed funds for research at RCH. The family have been fundraising since her passing and raised over $400,000. Lucia’s sister Sofia and Marcel (Lucia’s cousin) both attend Caulfield Grammar ELC and the school and community have been very touched and saddened of the tragic passing of baby Lucia. Caulfield Grammar ELC have designed a butterfly tea towel to raise money and awareness for Lucia Crinis’s legacy for the Cardiology Ward at the Royal Children’s Hospital.
We were so deeply touched when we heard this story and thrilled that we can offer the tea towels for sale, furthermore 100% of the proceeds will be forwarded to ‘The Lucia Crinis Legacy’ Lucia’s legacy and message continues to spread near and far; to cherish life, live more, love deeper and take nothing for granted. She continues to inspire others and spread her message and we are hoping to continue to raise funds for the cardiology ward at the Royal Children's Hospital so we can help other families. Tea towels are available online at minimax.com.au.
For more follow @sallycrinis on Instagram
ALL PROFITS GO TO SUPPORT LUCIA'S LEGACY TO RAISE FUNDS FOR THE ROYAL CHILDRENS HOSPITAL'S CARDIOLOGY WARD
ALL PROFITS GO TO ROYAL CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL CARDIOLOGY WARD
minimax.com.au TOORAK - BRIGHTON - CAMBERWELL - KNOX - RINGWOOD HOBART - LAUNCESTON - KINGSTON - CAMBRIDGE MARION - MILE END - ADELAIDE - NORWOOD - WEST BEACH BRISBANE AIRPORT DFO - BIGGERA WATERS