Forget the dry turkey that is nearly always either over or undercooked. And why not throw out the chestnuts and the christmas pudding? This year’s Christmas menu will please both you and your guests, as long as you don’t mind a little asian touch. And the best thing is; it doesn’t require you to spend hours on end in the kitchen. That’s the spirit! Let’s drink to that…
SALMON AND TUNA SASHIMI serves 8
Purchase sashimi grade fresh Tuna and Salmon.(Average 100 gr per person or more if you like) Prepare your plates with a few salad leafs and cut both tuna and salmon into small strips. Drape them on the plates on top of the salad and serve with soy sauce, slice of lemon and chopsticks.
Kikkoman Japanese Soy Sauce
500 grams Sashimi grade Tuna
500 rams Sashimi grade Salmon
pickled Ginger (optional)
BEEF JAPAN serves 8
This main course can also be served as a starter, whichever you prefer. It can be made in advance and served cold or you could prepare it on the spot and the dish will be served lukewarm. It is like a sashimi version of beef where you sear the meat briefly. It will be crusty on the outside. Be sure to get filet mignon, for this dish requires soft succulent meat.
Filet Mignon 125 grams per person and preferably in one piece.
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Spring onion thinly sliced
4 tbs Japanese Soy Sauce
2 tbs Rice Vinegar
2 tbs Sake
1 tsp Japanese Mustard (or any other)
2 Garlic Clove crushed
2 tsp finely Grated Ginger and its juice
2 tsp Caster- or other superfine Sugar
1 tsp Sesame Oil
2 to 3 tbs Vegetable Oil
Place the rucola on a large serving plate.
Season the one piece meat with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and wait till oil is almost but not yet smoking. Add the meat and fry it all around until it has a brown crust. Then lower the gas en let it simmer for 10 more minutes turning it regularly. Turn down the fire and leave the fillet in the pan covered with tin foil for another 10 minutes or more.
Prepare the dressing by combining all the ingredients and whisk them well.
Cut the meat into thin slices and drape them over the rucola. Use an electrical knife if you have one , it will be so much easier. Pour over 3/4 of the dressing and save some on the side. Serve in a bowl at the table. Sprinkle the spring onion and add a cut up chili if you prefer a little extra bite. Use scissors to cut some rucola on top. Serve with noodles, rice or Wasabi Gratin. You can find the recipe for the gratin below.
SESAME WASABI GRATIN
To save time you can buy ready made gratin and spice it up with wasabi, sesame oil and sesame seeds or you can make it homestyle: Peel and thinly slice 1 kg potatoes. Add cream, grated cheese garlic, salt a few drops of sesame oil and wasabi to taste. Mix it all really well. Place in a shallow dish and top up with cheese. Place in the oven at 200 C and cook for 45 minutes. Serve with pumpkin mash as a side dish.
PUMPKIN MASH with Ginger & Soy Sauce
serves 6 people
1,5 kg Pumpkin (the small Japanese variety)
100 grs Butter
1/4 tsp Sesame Oil
2 tsp Japanese Soy Sauce
1 1/2 tsp finely grated Ginger and its juice
pepper and sea salt flakes
Preheat oven to 200C.
Remove seeds from the pumpkin and cut it in half. Place the pumpkin with the skin down in a roasting tin. Sprinkle vegetable oil on top all over and roast for 70 minutes or until tender.
Scoop the flesh from the skin and put it in a bowl. Add butter, sesame oil and mash with a fork until very smooth and lump free. Stir in the soy sauce, ginger and juice and season with salt and pepper to taste.
PARMESAN SALAD BASKET makes 8-10 baskets depending on size
This dish is all about the parmesan basket and my is it delicious! We suggest you invest a little time in this one because it will stand out by the pure simplicity of both taste and presentation. We give you just the recipe for the cheese basket since you can fill it up with whatever salad you prefer. As a suggestion: take baby leaf greens with pieces of avocado and sun kissed tomatoes for example.
Piece of Parmesan Cheese (about 700 grams)
Note: don’t use grated cheese in this recipe, only shredded cheese will work.
Wrap the outside of an inverted terra-cotta pot in aluminum foil or if you don’t have that find a bowl or glass to fit your desired shape. Coat foil with vegetable cooking spray. Place a 30cm square of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Spread 1/2 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese onto the parchment paper, patting it into a circle. Bake at 190C for 5 to 7 minutes or until pale gold in color. Remove from oven and let cool 10 seconds. Now carefully lift the Parmesan circles of the baking sheet with a broad spatula. Working quickly, invert the Parmesan circle over the prepared pot. Gently press the cheese over inverted pot into desired bowl shape. Tip: If the cheese circle is too hot, it will slide down the pot, causing small tears. If this happens, gently press the cheese together to seal any large gaps. Cool basket completely, about 5 minutes and remove from pot. Repeat to create as many baskets as you need.
CHOCOLATE ORANGE MOUSSE
375 grams dark chocolate
2 tbs sugar
1/4 liter of cream
rind of one Orange
Cut up the chocolate in chunks and melt it au bain marie or over a low fire. Keep stirring until everything is completely melted.
Separate the egg yolks from the whites. Whisk the egg yolks with a little bit of sugar for a long time. Indication: when it doesn’t smell like egg anymore and it has transformed into a pale creamy substance, you’re ready…
Careful mix the egg yolk now with the melted chocolate and the rind of the orange skin. Whisk the egg whites with a little bit of sugar until foamy and you can form peaks that will stand up. Carefully scoop the egg whites into the rest of the mixture you’ve made, until evenly mixed. Scoop onto a slice of orange or into glasses and finish with fresh fruit on the side.