With Catherine Fulvio
Christmas Day dinner aside, many of you will be planning to host a dinner party or Family get together over the coming month. It may be a themed affair, or it may be a cocktail party, but if you’re having some numbers over, you’re going to need to prepare in advance. But fear not, we have all the advice you need over the next little while with Catherine Fulvio.
Eggnog, Blueberry and Shortbread Trifle
Ideally this made a day ahead of time for all the lovely spicy flavours to infuse. Once you have the eggnog made, the assembly is very quick and easy. I like to keep my shortbread pieces roughly chopped for texture but if you prefer them finer, just crush in a food processor.
For the eggnog sauce
2 tbsp arrowroot
4 large eggs
4 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp allspice
250ml cream, whipped
1 tbsp rum
Pinch of nutmeg
250g blueberries, washed
1 lime, zest and juice
2 tbsp caster sugar
350g shortbread biscuits, roughly chopped
Nutmeg, to decorate
Blueberries, to decorate
1 lime, 3 – 4 slices and zest
Firstly mix the arrowroot with a little milk to form a smooth paste, then transfer the rest of the milk and the arrow paste into a saucepan, add the eggs, sugar, vanilla, allspice. Heat the mixture slowly over a medium heat and keep stirring until it has thickened. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.In the meantime, combine the blueberries, lime and sugar together in a small saucepan and simmer gently for about 4 to 5 minutes and allow to cool.Fold the cooled eggnog mix into the whipped cream. Stir in the rum and a little nutmeg.To assemble, spoon some blueberries into the base of a pretty glass serving bowl. Layer with eggnog cream and then biscuits. Continue, ending with the eggnog cream.Sprinkle over a little nutmeg, lime slices and zest and a few blueberries. Chill.
Tip: Try this with pomegranate seeds and lime, just heat for 2 minutes.
Orange and Marsala Chicken
A very simple dish to serve during the Christmas party season when family and friends are over for a get together. The Marsala and orange glam it up and give a wonderful flavour to the butternut squash wedges. This will give you more time to spend on the dessert or canapés.
4 chicken supremes
100g pancetta, diced
10 small shallots, peeled and left whole
1 medium red chilli, deseeded and sliced
1 small butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into small wedges
250ml orange juice
1 small orange, sliced into thin wedges
4 to 5 small sprigs rosemary
Rustic croutons, to serve
Sprigs of rosemary, to garnish
Preheat the oven to 180C / Gas4.
Heat the olive oil in a casserole over a medium heat, add the chicken and brown on both sides. Stir in the pancetta and sauté until just crisp.
Add the shallots, chilli, butternut squash, orange juice and Marsala. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Tuck in the orange wedges and rosemary sprigs and transfer to the oven for about 35 to 40 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Baste the chicken and vegetables from time to time.
To serve, drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle over the croutons and sprigs of rosemary.
Tip: Instead of the marsala use a sherry or even some Chianti with chunky sweet carrots and thyme.