My Christmas 2011 in pictures: 3 days of eating

My three days of eating was full of not only food but was full of family, love and laughter.  

 

The past few months have been a really busy time. Christmas, this time has been dedicated to spending quality time with the family. Time goes so fast and I don’t want to miss any part of it. Working 7 days a week at the shop can make that a little difficult but I’ve learnt to make time for not only with my husband and children but also with my mum and dad. 

 

I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas, just like me.
 

My Christmas celebrations started a month before. I held my annual Christmas Cocktail party for family. You can see the post here

 

I started my Christmas baking two weeks before the big day. I wanted the house to be filled with the smell of Christmas.  I found a recipe for cute mini chocolate pudding cookies. You can get the recipe here. With the left over cookie dough I made black and white cookies and tea cup cookies. 

I made mini gingerbread houses for the family to decorate. I think the children did a better job than I did.  

Christmas Eve
 

Noche Buena was held at my parent’s house. Dad worked hard on the barbequed lamb, pork and pork tocino (sweetened cured pork) and all was beautiful and delicious. Mum also had roasted chicken maryland and cooked up an amazing paella. Sis in law and I made salads to complete the feast. 

For dessert, my cousin brough along a box of sweet mangoes. Sis in law made a delicious chocolate and honey cashew bombe wtih mocha sauce. 

My contribution was a Christmas Wreath pavlova. I got the idea from Donna Hay’s Magazine, Christmas issue however, I decorated mine with fruit with Christmassy colours. 

Christmas Day
 

After the children opened their Christmas stocking presents, we started the day off with waffles with crispy bacon and maple syrup. Hubby made a buck’s fizz for me to drink while I cooked up breaky. 

The chidren then opened up their main presents. Santa was very kind to them this year. To see some of their presents, you can go to Deanna’s blog post here.
 

For our Christmas lunch, we had goose. I used Jamie Oliver’s recipe. So easy and so tasty. Our sides consisted of roast potatoes cooked in beef dripping, cauliflower cheese, corn cobs, pigs in a blanket, mashed swede and carrot and brussel sprouts with bacon. Needless to say, we were completely full after our lunch. 

For dessert, we had choc-honeycombe ice-cream pudding. A quick and easy cake, I adapted from super food ideas Magazine, December issue. Hubby also had my Christmas cake which I started 2 months ago. It’s the usual recipe I use, which you can get here, but I added chocolate chips to this one just to change it up a bit. 

For late supper, we had my home made country pate with Cheddar cheese and crustini. I made the pate about 4 days before. I try to make this every Christmas so it’s sort of a Christmas tradition in my house now. 

 

Boxing Day 

 

Boxing day is traditionally spent at my mother in law’s. As we don’t get to see her on Christmas day, the Moore families head over to her house to celebrate a late Christmas. She put on a lovely spread of roast turkey and ham, assorted roasted vegetables. As usual, we go home with full bellies. 

For dessert we had a mango cheesecake and a pavlova. Yum. 

As you can see my Christmas was fabulously filled with delicious food and fantastic company. 

 
 

I hope yours was the same. 

 
 

Happy New Year! 

 
 

Bon Appetite, 

Cherrie

My Birthday @MelbourneHilton & Nuevo37

For my birthday this year hubby booked us a room at the Hilton Hotel South Wharf. The last Hilton hotel we stayed at was the Beverly Hilton so it had a lot to live up to.

The hotel itself is situated in Melbourne’s newish South Wharf precinct; overlooking the Polly Woodside and Yarra and right next to the DFO (shopping!) At check-in we were told our room had been upgraded to a King Delux offering city views, which as you can see, were quite magnificent.

The room itself was spacious and included an LCD TV offering all FTA channels plus Fox 8, News & Sports, as well as a King Sized Bed with Pillow Menu. This allows you complimentary pillows of your choice to suit your needs. The bathroom area was especially opulent and included a shower that can accommodate two comfortably.

After check-in we had a leisurely walk into the city enjoying the sites. It’s nice to be a tourist in your own city sometimes. We somehow ended up at the new Zara store where hubby brought me a few more birthday presents. We couldn’t believe how busy it was still; 10 minute line just to try on the clothes! Still, it was worth it :) We caught the city circle tram back to the hotel and upon arrival was greeted with complimentary champagne and strawberries courtesy of the reception manager Ben – thanks again!

After finishing our champagne we headed down to Nuevo37 for dinner. The restaurant is kind of located just outside the hotel but you can get to it via the hotel’s Sotano wine + tapas bar. Neuvo37 has a great ambience but it wasn’t conducive for great photos so apologies for the pic quality – it doesn’t do the food justice. Like most restaurants bread was brought first but at Neuevo37 the selection was a little bit more unusual – they offered a fruit & nut loaf for example.

For entrée I had the jamon (served with a pair of space-age tweezers) and hubby had the beef & chorizo stew. Both were amazing and perfect sized portions. I find some restaurants are tending to serve such large meals these days which makes it difficult to enjoy the whole meal. I much prefer quality over quantity.

For mains hubby had the duck confeit which was served with a chocolate and hazelnut smear. I had the Braised Wagyu beef cheeks with sweet potato, and brussel sprouts.

For dessert I had the hot chocolate and (best ever) churroz and hubby had the bread pudding. He said it wasn’t quite as good as @ChefMrWilson’s but very close.

The next morning we headed back to Nuevo37 for breakfast. I could go on and on about the variety of foods served then (fresh honeycomb & honey anyone?) but I’ll leave that for you to explore. Overall it was a magnificent birthday & I know we’ll be back at the Hilton; sooner rather than later hopefully.

Cheers,

Cherrie