Make New Traditions With a Spiced Up Christmas Table
Every Friday, Sofia Wood shares her best cooking ideas here on Make it last. With Christmas just a couple of days away, she adds some last minute touches to her Nouveau Christmas buffet.
A few final ideas for the holiday table if you, like me, like to add new things and spice up the traditions. I think a modern holiday spread should have influences from other cultures, be lighter and brighter than what we tend to steer towards up here in the North. In order to keep the stress levels to a minimum, I’ve also kept the recipes hassle-free so you can enjoy other things than the kitchen for Christmas.
Raw Red Cabbage, Citrus and Fig Salad
This colorful crunchy, savory, sweet and citrusy salad is a must have for me, totally delish and will keep you coming back for more!
Serves 4 as part of a buffet
1/2 head of red cabbage
2 blood oranges
4 fresh figs
A handfull of mixed toasted nuts, such as walnuts, almonds, cashews and hazelnuts
1 clementine, zest and juice
1/2 lemon, zest and juice
3 tbsp good quality olive oil
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Shave the cabbage finely, preferably using a mandolin or otherwise a sharp knife. Cut the oranges into segments by filleting each piece, making sure to remove all the membranes. Toss the cabbage and orange fillets together. Whisk together clementine and lemon juice and zest with the olive oil in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add chunks of torn up figs and nuts to the cabbage salad and serve dressed with the clementine dressing.
Marinated Goat Cheese
Go ahead and use your imagination for the flavoring here. I like the tanginess of the Middle Eastern sumac in combination with the chili and clementine, but really, anything works. If you have the time, make this a day or two ahead!
Serves 6 as part of a buffet
250 g fresh goats cheese, rind removed
1 good pinch of chili
1 good pinch of sumac
1 good pinch of cracked black pepper
2 packed tbsp finely chopped mixed herbs, like parsley, sage, thyme and basil
1 clementine zest
2 dl neutral or olive oil
Crumble the cheese, then roll into small round little balls and place them gently in a bowl or jar. Sprinkle the cheese with spices, herbs and clementine zest then drizzle with oil, making sure to cover the cheese completely.
Baked pineapple, Honey and Pomegranate
To bake a pineapple whole concentrates the flavor and totally changes the texture. Adding a bit of honey and zingy pomegranate really completes this desert. Serve it as it is or with ice cream, vanilla creme fraîche or whipped cream. Do you know how to pick a ripe pineapple? Just try pulling out one of the inner leaves. If it comes out very easily you’re good to go!
Serves 4 as a part of a buffet
1 large ripe pineapple
4 tbsp honey
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Trim the top leaves off the pineapple, prick it all around with a sharp knife and place it in a baking dish. Bake for 2 hours until fully soft, juicy and fragrant. Let cool enough to be able to handle with your hands.
Remove the top first then straight across the bottom so it will stand up. Slice down the sides removing all of the skin. Cut it in half then remove the tough inner core with an apple corer or knife and cut it into large chunks. Add bits of broken up pomegranate and serve drizzled with honey.
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