Monday, 19 December 2011

Crap party food and awesome cheesiness

Morning all!  Can you believe it's less than a week until Christmas already??  Scary!!  Well I thought I'd show you some of the christmassy themed stuff I've eaten lately.  Starting with the food from my work Christmas do last Tuesday.

Unfortunately for yours truly, the vegan food pretty much sucked.  I was very grateful still to actually have a vegan menu offered to me, but wish it was better executed!!

The appetiser was the best bit... bread & hummus.

The starter was a (small) piece of melon.  At least it wasn't gross and hard!
 

The main was a potato thing (that really is the best I can describe it, as I'd had a few glasses of wine by this point) that was pretty good, but cold.  The sauce was cold, the veg were cold.  The peppers and aubergine were not properly cooked or seasoned at all.  I struggled to get my knife through the pepper!

Dessert was really REALLY imaginative - fruit salad!!  It was ok, but boring.

Aside from the food, it was an awesome night though!!


Onto some good GREAT eats.  My friend Jojo had a vegan wine & cheese party at her house, this past saturday and these were my offering - cheese & potato pasties.  I have given a vague recipe for this at the bottom of the post if anyone's interested.  They were good!

There was leftover pastry so I decided to make some mini pastries - these were filled with smooth speculoos paste and a few chocolate chips. YUM!

Onto the rest of the food.  Obligatory cheese & pineapple on a stick!

My friend Kip's awesome cheeseball, which is amazing and rolled in cranberries and nuts.  We always ask her to make this for parties because it is SO. FREAKING. GOOD!!  One day I will remember to ask her for the recipe for it!

In this pic is Kip's blue cheese dip, cheezly blue and cheddar with cranberries that I bought (it's their Christmas selection) and crock cheese from the uncheese cookbook - not sure who made the crock cheese, I think it was Jojo? I have that book and have never made anything from it, but the crock cheese was really good so I'm definitely going to have to make some soon!

Kip's awesome artichoke dip. This stuff was GOOD!  Also in this pic is my balsamic onion chutney. It was a recipe I found on the interwebz and was pretty good, but a bit too sweet for me.  My dad seems to like it though!

The spread!

The wine!!

After the party me and our friend Hana both stayed at Jojo's, so the next morning we all went for breakfast.  Although actually it was lunch really by the time we motored ourselves out the door.  We decided to go to Wai Kika Moo Kau, as Iydea stop serving breakfast at 11.20 - stupid time or what!!  Anyway, I got the brighton deli wrap, which was good, but just a bit too much salad for my liking.  The sausages were good (they tasted like Linda McCartney's to me!). 

Chips in the wrap - yes I am a genius!

Recipe for the vegan cheese pasties

Filling:
2 large potatoes (I used 2 bakers)
1 large onion
1 pack of cheezly (I used half a pack of white cheddar and half a pack of red cheddar) or whatever vegan cheese you like.  About 200g!
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp paprika
Salt & pepper to taste

Chop the potatoes into small dice and par-boil for 10 minutes (until JUST cooked but not too soft).  In the meatime, saute the onion in the oil and a pinch of salt for 5-10 mins, until cooked and starting to brown.  Add thyme and paprika and season lightly.

Mix together the potatoes, onion mixture and grated cheese then test for seasoning (I didn't need to add much salt as the cheese is pretty salty).  Chill the mixture (I left it overnight).

To assemble, I rolled out ready bought frozen puff pastry (I used the big pack of Jus-Rol) and cut around a cereal bowl for each one.  Then wet the edges of the circle and put a generous tablespoon of filling in the centre.  Folder over, press to seal and then use a fork to crimp the edges shut.  Place on a baking tray lined with parchment and spray lightly with olive oil. Bake 20-25 minutes at 180C/350F or until lightly browned. 

Cool on a cooling rack and try not to burn your tongue when you eat one too quickly because you are too hungry to wait (like I did)!

This filling makes a lot!  I used about 3/4 of the pack of Jus-Rol and got about 16 pasties, but it depends on your bowl size!  There was quite a bit of filling left so I have frozen it for future pasty making over christmas!! 

The rest of the pastry I used for the sweet pastries, which I cut out with a 1 cup metal measuring cup and filled with a tsp of speculoos paste and about 3 or 4 chocolate chips. These took about 15 minutes to bake.

That's it for now - hope you all have a fantasmical Christmas, if you celebrate it and I will see you after chrimbo for pics of Christmas dinner! YAY.


Sing it now.... "When the snowman brings the snow.... well he just might like to knooooowwww he put a great big smile on SOMEBODY'S FACE."  Yeah that'd be my face!! 

Laterz
xXx