For the last six years, I’ve done my level best to avoid complicated Christmas preparations which send me and my nearest and dearest into overwind. You know the story: endless trips to the mall, online shopping frenzies while buckling under all that commercial pressure put on us as consumers. What’s more, I’m always broke in January and cannot take advantage of the sales
This Christmas let’s leave that all behind.
For me, the magic of Christmas is in applying the brakes to the fast-paced life I lead and spending more time with those I love. Gifts can be simple, homemade if possible, and inexpensive. I also relish the opportunity of decorating our home with recyclables if there’s time. Then I squeeze my extended family around the Christmas table to enjoy a splendid meal cooked from scratch, in which we’ve all had a hand. No one is stressed out by having to cook the entire feast on their own. As a result, we’re generally in good spirits.
This year, I’m adding the sensational vegetarian Festive Christmas Pie to the lineup because I’m on a mission to eat less meat. I believe it’s one way I can help to conserve the planet’s resources. I admit it’s been challenging to come up with a vegetarian dish which is every bit as impressive and delicious as the traditional roast bird or succulent glazed ham.
I believe we’ve cracked it.
Peace and Love.
Festive Christmas Pie
Not so long ago, vegetarians had to be content with the ‘sides’ and watch while omnivores tucked into the succulent main course. That’s all changed for the better thanks to pioneering chefs like Deliciously Ella and Ottolenghi among many others, who have taught us that vegetarian main courses can be substantial, sexy and good for people and planet. We believe this Festive Christmas Pie could hold its own at any celebration. Layered with butternut, spinach, ricotta and goat’s cheese, delicately spiced with harissa paste and encased in the most delicious Parmesan pastry, this vegetarian alternative to traditional Christmas fare is a showstopper. Get the recipe.
Green Beans Pestolata
If you’re wondering which veggie or side to serve with your Christmas feast, why not try our green beans with Parmesan, pine nuts and pesto. They make a luxurious yet light accompaniment to any main, no matter whether you’re heading down the traditional roast turkey route or the less traditional, but equally impressive, Vegetarian Festive Christmas Pie. Get the recipe.
Meze with Homemade Crackers
As we look back on this year, we have reason to celebrate many achievements yet the most exciting of them all is our recent launch of Pesto Princess Hummus and so this year it is fitting that our Christmas table should celebrate Her Royal Hummus as the star of a festive meze spread which happens to be super easy to throw together. Serve as a starter or an integral part of the main event like it is for Our Vegetarian Feast. Get the recipe.
Recipe and food styling by Michelle Parkin.
Michael Olivier’s Choice
De Wetshof Riesling 2013
Riseling is one of the most noble white wine grapes, making some of the finest wines in Germany. The De Wets of Dewetshof make this fine example of a very moreish wine.
Looks like Bottled with a natural cork closure in a bottle called an Alsatian Flute. Elegant De Wetshof livery. In the glass, it is a pale golden straw with green flashes.
Smells like Soft stone fruits – distinctive and very pleasant.
It tastes like Wonderful bright fruit including white-fleshed peach. The wine has a a fabulous soft fruity acidity and brilliant minerality. Known as ‘halbtrocken’ it is off dry and is made for food.