And just why does your vote count here at this ole blog? Cus you dear reader get to vote on what this year's Holiday Feast! Why is there a Holiday Feast at the ole hamstead down unda? Read on... read. on.
This here whole tradition goes back to when I first arrived in Adelaide. Firstly, you knead to know there is no Tryptophan Overdose Day down here. That means no Thanksgiving. So I decided that I'd whip up a nice Holiday Feast. And I'd do it with fairly non-traditional foods that my Aussie (formerly border-country english) in-laws wouldn't know how to cook or eat.
It has since grown. I now include some very traditional Holiday foods.
Why do I call it The Holiday Feast instead of Christmas dinner? Because this lasts two weeks. Why two weeks? Cus it starts on the summer solstice of December twenty-oneth and goes for two weeks till January threeth or fourth. Or whenever we are too full to eat.
Down here betwixt Christmas and New Years there's really only one day of work, and not that much gets done then anyways. Why is that? Getcher calender out and I'll 'splain it to ya.
25th is a Saturday this year, 24th friday. Now no one really wants to work Christmas Eve so last real day of work is the 23rd. But since that's full of office parties and the like let's count that as holiday too. That leaves Dec 22nd. But since solstice in the 21st, how's about we just start the festivities then? After all. South Oz is known internationally as The Festival State.
Boxing day (26th) is a Sunday. The Official Christmas day holiday is Monday the 27th, so the Official Boxing Day holiday is Tues the 28th. Dec 28th is also Proclamation Day for South Oz. Boxing Day is also the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, so not much to be done till at least the 29th. Boxing day also starts the Boxing Day Test Match (cricket) which goes on for 5 days. New Year's Day is Saturday, with New Year's Eve being Friday. Since no one works New Year's Eve, then Dec 29th and 30th would be the only two days of work. Screw that, there's a yacht race and a Test match on, why should Adelaide work? Then Monday the 3rd is the Official New Year's Day holiday and if you're lucky enough you'll be in a place that also celebrates The Day After New Year as a holiday.
All in all, you gots nothing to do betwixt Dec 21th and January 4th. So why not cook, eat, watch cricket, watch a boat race, lay on the beach, drink lotsa beer, and gain 15 pounds?
What I'm going to do here is paste the Holiday Feast from years gone by. That'd be 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009. You'll notice there are some dishes that appear throughout and these dishes will be cooked. And also my extra special Frozen Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Hot Fudge Sauce will be made. Otherwise I'll be sleeping on the couch all of 2011.
So vote in the comments for the dishes you'd like. Vote for as many dishes as you'd like, or as few as you'd like, no worries. If there aren't too many folks voting then I'll call the vote an abstention and make whatever the heck I want from the lists. But if LOTS of you vote then I'll go with what y'all vote for. Including the "always to be made" stuff.
Ok, here we go!
WAIT! How's about a picture of a sleeping koala first?
And followed up with a sushi platter:
Alrighty then! Let's have a squizz at the previous menus!
2006 Holiday Feast blog post:
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Guy Fawkes Down Unda!
Ha! Didn't that title fool y'all? I'll bet right now everyone in the US is busy googling the name Guy Fawkes. What? You're not? Damn, oh well... I guess I'll fill ya in.
In 1605 AD (Before Dave--The "A" is just a typo) a bloke named Guy Fawkes was arrested for trying to blow up the English Parliament on Nov 5th, 1605, BD. He didn't succeed, but there is a sort of unofficial holiday for either "Guy Fawkes Night" or "Bonfire Night".
So, now you know... But why/how do I know this? Cus the Most Wonderful Woman In The World (my wifey-poo) was born the day before on the 4th of Nov --yes, she is now 401 years old but doesn't look a day over 250. It just MIGHT have something to do with me being able to see in the dark and those two little scars on my neck that don't heal... Feral yellow eyes at night, geesh, doesn't everyone have those?
"Dave, just tell us the 'supposed' relevance of Guy Fawkes and today's post, thank you." Ah! I heard you think that.
Burning down Parliament requires fire. A by-product of fire is ashes. The Ashes Test Series is going on right now down unda (that's aussie pronunciation of 'under'). The Poms are going down in FLAMES!
Now do you get it???
I can take solace in the fact that in the previous Ashes up in the Old Country the Poms got the sh*t kicked outta them in the first test, then battled back and won the Ashes for the first time in yonks. Go POMS!
Since 99.99% of my readers are in the USA, I figure this has been a great lesson in what's happening in the rest of the world, eh?
No story today but I will share with you my Yuletide and New Year Holiday menu with you. In fact, each post from now till the 22nd of Dec, BD (I'll be busy cooking after that) will have a recipe from the menu.
So, without further intellectual wanking from yours truly (that means I'll shut me trap), here's the menu for my Holiday Feast:
Remember: a recipe from something of the menu follows, so read on:
This is in no particular order, I've still got to organise it on a day to day basis. Oh, everything is homemade from scratch.
Panforte (type of a christmas cake)
Polynesian Lamb Spare Ribs
Cinnamon bread (2 or 3 loaves)
4,5 or 6 loaves homemade white bread
Pineapple Topping --for the ice cream
Banana Jam --for the ice cream
Homemade Ice Cream --for the above toppings to cover
Roast Pork Leg --persian style seasonings
Lots of Stuffing
Candied Sweet Potatoes
5 types of Gravy
Chunky Mild Salsa
Hot Smooth Salsa
Apricot Cobbler (at least 2)
Herbed Potatoes --oven roasted
Sushi Platter --6 or 7 varieties
Herbed, Buttered, Pumpkins Chunks
Beef Roast --seasoned with either egyptian or morrocan herbs
Advokaat Cheesecake --Advokaat is a liquer made from brandy and egg yolks
Baked Cheesecake --either strawberry or blueberry, freshly picked
Homemade Corn Chips
Homemade Potato(e) Chips
Green Beans and Red Capsicums (bell pepper) with bacon and nuts
Champagne with strawberries
Garden Greens Salad
Marinated Onion and Cucumber Salad
Sherry -one bottle for cooking
Beer (2 cases variety of types)
Red Wine (one cask)
White Wine (one cask)
Tequila, White Curacuao (triple sec), lime juice --for margaritas
Sake (1 or 2 bottles)
Advokaat (one bottle)
Brandy (1 or 2 bottles)
Aaaaannnnnnnnnddddddddd........ Today's recipe is....
Miti is a coconut dip from Fiji. The miti that I make is a variation from a traditional recipe tailored (or seamstressed) for ease of use of westerners. Oh, I have made it the traditional way, but it takes a while and (as you can tell from the menu) I'll need to shortcut where (wear) I can.
What you need:
1 cup (237 mls) dried coconut
1 tbsp (15 mls) fresh lemon juice (if you don't have a lemon tree out front then snag a lemon from the neighbors lemon tree)
1 fresh red chilli (chili) finely minced
1 small (small) onion, finely minced
1 1/4 cups (296.25 mls) boiling H2O (water)
What you do:
Chuck everything into a bowl. Let it sit for 2 to 4 hours. Strain the liquid into a bowl. Then take the leftover solids in your hand and SQUEEZE the heck out of them to extract the rest of the juice (do this over the strained liquid --you'll figure it out).
You can toss the SQUEEZED solids, or use them in a stir fry, or freeze em, or add em to rice while cooking the rice, hey: whatever.
The resulting liquid makes an awesome dip for dave's special homemade corn chips (stay tuned for that recipe).
Oh, you can use lime juice instead of lemon, they both work grate (great).
Next up, the 2007 Holiday Feast blog post:
Saturday, December 22, 2007
THE Holiday Feast Down Unda
I'm a little late getting this years holiday feast typed in. In fact, we've already started on it --3 days ago! Some of you may notice it's a wee bit similar to last years feast; that's cus we've got many favorite recipes. Also, I've some new ones, and some that are just too darned expensive.
This is in NO particular order, but it'll feed four adults for two weeks. Oh, we're having a pool party and barbeque on the 28th, so the 4 or 5 kilos of snags are for the sausage sizzle.
Unless otherwise noted, everything is homemade by yours truly, or adapted (by yours truly) from recipe book --of which I have LOTS.
If'n any of you'd like a recipe for any of the following, just let me know via a comment, no worries.
Highland oat cakes
Peanut butter cheesecake with hot fudge sauce
Polynesian pork spare ribs
Cinnamon raisin bread
Chocolate mint ice cream with choc chips
Miti (it's a dip)
Banana leaf wrapped pork roast
Roast chook (at least 2 of em)
3 apricot cobblers (had one of em last night)
3 kinds of stuffing
4 types of gravy
3 types of salsa
5 kilos of sausages (for the bbq pool party)
2 kilos onions (for the above sausages)
Herbed spuds on the grill
My special homemade Dolmades
One of my special sushi platters
Maple syrup candied pork roast
Corn chips and potato chips fresh made
Green beans and red capsicums with bacon and peanut sauce
Champagne with strawberries
Buttered roasted pumpkin pieces
2 cases beer
2 casks red wine
1 cask white wine
spicy marinated onions
Tequila, triple sec, and lime juice (mum-in-law has requested my special margaritas)
1 bottle brandy
1 bottle Father O'Learys Irish Cream
1.5 liters bourbon and coke
1 bottle dry cider
1 bottle sweet cider
Hot fudge sauce
Mince pies (lots)
1 homemade bottle of chilli pepper and honey mead (I'll be the only one having that)
I think that should pretty much cover it. Remember, if you want a specific recipe then just ask.
We follow that with the 2008 Holiday Feast Post:
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Yes, it's that time of year again. Christmas and New Year! Gotta start planning for it early, doncha know.
It appears that summer may actually have arrived early this year, it's 95 F in the shade and 134 F in the sun. The pool in at 80 F. Tomorrow is actually supposed to be warm, so fingers crossed that I can take off the flannel shirt and bunny boots soon.
This years' menu will be forthcoming, but first...
You know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words? Yeah, that means I'll shut up...
Before I begin typing in this years menu, let me tell you that this is to feed the brood from dec 23rd to Jan 3rd. Yes, life pretty much comes to a halt for 2 weeks down unda.
Now, I still haven't decided what's gonna be served on which day, and there'll be a couple of days of leftovers spaced throughout. I also reserve the right to add any menu item I want to. Hmmmph!
Please note, with the exception of the Christmas fruitcakes and the puddings that have been in the pantry for 6 years, pretty much everything is made from scratch. No, I don't go out and milk the cow's for the cream... you know what I mean!
At this point there is no particular order, or rhyme or reason to anything; I'm just jotting down the stuff that I plan to prepare.
Holiday Feast 2008/2009 Menu
Peanut Butter Cheesecake with hot fudge sauce (does this surprise you?)
2 Christmas fruitcakes
2 Roast chooks with all the fixin's --that includes stuffing, gravy, spuds, etc
Dave's Polynesian Pork Roast --yes, it's wrapped in banana leaves and slow roasted
Souvlaki chicken with tabouli and tzatziki
BBQ Roo burgers
Teriyaki Roo burgers
Dave's extra special chips
Grilled Basa fillets
Homemade crumpets and cream
Charlotte Rouse (you'll love it, I'll put up pics of the process)
Candied Sweet Potato with marshmallow and cherry topping
Waldorf salad --with mom's special dressing
Herbed, baked spuds
Pineapple glazed ham
Herbed, baked pumpkin
Roasted pumpkin seeds
Mexican buffet with all the fixin's (let your imagination run wild on this)
At least 2 sushi platters
Pineapple Coconut pie
Pineapple meringue pie
Chocolate mint Chocolate chip ice cream made with fresh choc mint from the garden
2 Xmas puddings
Fresh plate of homemade dolmades
Pitcher (or 4) of margaritas
case of Cascade's
case of Boag's
Strawberries and cream
Champagne and strawberries
A few cases of vino
Apples and bleu cheese
Devonshire Cream Tea --made from homemade scones, fresh whipped cream, and fresh picked strawberries.
I'm sure I've left something out, but you kinda get the idea... If I don't gain 15 pounds this year then I'll consider this holiday wasted!
Oi mate! What about the sunflower seeds?
And finally here is the 2009 Holiday Feast:
Tuesday, December 08, 2009
Holiday Feast 2009 --Keeping It Simple *UPDATED*
Yes, this year I've been told to keep Dave's Annual Super-Awesome Holiday Feast down to a more, shall we say, reasonable level than in years' gone by.
So to help with that, I've started making tofu.
Turns out it's very quick and easy to make! Very cheap too AND you get a big batch of okara leftover to make things like fake burgers, fake roasts, fake pork, fake roast chook... well, you get the idea.
And then there's all the neat things you can do with tofu! Marinate it, smoke it, grill it, stuff it, feed it to someone you don't like... See? There's so much you can do with just some plain soy beans and magnesium chloride!
In fact, I have decided that this years' feast will be meat free and all the meat dishes will be made with my own homemade tofu!
But I have started making tofu. It will, however, of course, have practically NOTHING to do with any of the food this holiday season.
Many of you may be familiar with my previous menus, many of you may not. Just keep in mind that all but a few dishes on the menu are homemade. By me.
And the pots and pans are home cleaned. By me.
Yes, it's amazing what I go through, sigh...
Oh, if you want to learn how to make any of these, then just lemme know and hopefully one of these recipes will appear (like magic!) on my food blog.
And don't worry, there'll be a funny pic of dave at the end of all this, so please read. And keep in mind that this is meant to be spaced out over 3 weeks. And it's in no particular order. And no food is wasted.
holiday feast 2009
stout beer n brats w onions
peanut butter cheesecake w/ hot fudge sauce --I've been told if I don't make this each year then I'd better sleep with one eye open.
3 sushi platters
homemade tofu, marinated, smoked, grilled, etc.
roast chook w/ all the fixins
roasted pumpkin seeds --from the above pumpkin
toasted chilli n garlic almonds & peanuts
pork roast wrapped in banana leaves and slow roasted with polynesian
highland oat cakes
apples n bleu cheese
various homemade cheeses
1 xmas fruitcake
1 xmas pudding
pineapple & maple syrup glazed ham
candied sweet potatoes
cinnamon raisin bread
many loaves of white and wholemeal bread
grilled basa fillets
many servings of my extra special chips (thick fries)
1 bottle of advokaat for above cheesecake
lots of homebrews; stout, lager, dark ale, regular ale, chilli beer, etc.
garden greens salads
marinated fish & onion & cucumber salad
4 kilos of sausage --if we have a pool party
onions for above sausage
1 apricot cobbler
mexican buffet with all the fixin's
champagne n strawberries
green beans n red capsicums w/ bacon & peanut sauce
panforte --awesomely great xmas cake
souvlaki chicken w/ tabouli & tzatziki
devonshire cream tea
pineapple coconut pie
O'Leary's Irish Cream
cask of red wine
cask of white wine
hot fudge sauce
herbed, baked spuds
whipped cream stuffed crepes w/ dark chocolate sauce
How could I forget my Polynesian Hibiscus Water?
See? I've kept it simple this year! Harumph.
And now for a bit of foreshadowing...
I'm quite sure many questions leap to mind.
"Why is the ladder in the pool?"
"Does dave know about elektrikery and water?"
"Is there a happy ending? Cus I hate sad endings, but in dave's case I'll make an exception."
Why don't YOU come up with your own questions for the pictures and put it in the comments?
So, that's it! Loosen up your typing fingers and start typing! Use the comments vote for loads of goodies! Please, PLEASE vote for LOTS of stuff!!! I'll give y'all till Friday, December Tenth, and then I'm gonna start cookin'!