Special Christmas recipes

Fresh Fish Cocktail
800 - 1kg fresh fish fillet, cut into cubes 2 large lettuce, leaves washed
180ml mayonnaise 120ml thick plain yoghurt
2 tbsp coriander, very finely grated 3 large carrots, grated
1 lemon, juice and grated rind Lemon wedges
3 tbsp tomato ketchup Salt to taste

Cook fish in salted water, flake with fork and chill. Set aside a small lettuce leaf per person. Mix well mayonnaise tomato ketchup, yoghurt, coriander, a pinch of salt and chill. In large bowl, break remaining lettuce leaves into very small pieces and mix well with carrots, lemon juice and rind. Stir in fish and mayonnaise. Chill.

To serve
Put a lettuce leaf in a cocktail glass, neatly pile on fish mixture, make small cut in the centre of a lemon wedge and stick it on the rim of each glass. Put the rest of the fish cocktail in a clean bowl and serve.

Potato, Bacon and Cauliflower Cheese

200g bacon, cubed and fried crisp 500g cooked peas and carrot cubes
500g potatoes, cut cubes, boiled 90g butter/margarine
500g cauliflower florets, boiled
2 cups grated cheese
4 cups milk
½ cup wheat flour
½ tsp ground black pepper Salt

Melt butter in pan over medium heat. Add flour and cook stirring for 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat gradually stir in milk, return to heat and cook stirring constantly, until mixture boils. Stain if lumps have formed. Stir in cheese, salt and pepper.

Mix vegetables and bacon together. Lightly grease 1 or 2 oven-proof dishes. Put in vegetable mixture, pour over the cheese sauce and bake at 190C/375F/gas mark 5, until golden brown. Prepare a day ahead, chill and re-heat before serving.

Roast Stuffed Turkey
Ingredients (for stuffing)
5.5kg dressed turkey 10 sausages
385g (4½ cups) fresh breadcrumbs 200g dates, chopped
160g roasted, skinned nuts, chopped 2 tbsp lemon rind, finely grated
100g cooked rice
1 large egg, whisked
100g Butter/margarine 1 chicken stock cube
You will need foil paper
8 medium potatoes, quartered 3 large carrots, sliced thick

Rub turkey inside-out with salt and brush skin with melted butter. Combine stuffing ingredients together with meat from two sausages (skin removed), and stuff turkey cavity loosely. Make small balls out of the remaining mixture.

Grease roasting pan, put turkey in pan and cover with foil paper. Cut sausages in half. Brush sausages, stuffing balls and vegetables with oil and put around turkey. Bake at 180C/350F/ gas mark 4. Remove foil after 2¼ hours, basting turkey occasionally with melted butter. Bake until golden and juices run clear when pierced in thickest part of the thigh. To make Gravy: Add a little water to bottom of turkey pan, scrap sediment, strain, mix with 3 tbsp four, add 1 cup water and boil stirring for 5 mins, until smooth and thick.

Rainbow Pasta Salad
500g spiral pasta, boiled, drained 1 small cabbage, shredded
3 large carrots, grated 1 medium onion, finely sliced
2 large green peppers, diced 10 black olives
150g salami, thinly sliced & halved 5 medium tomatoes

60ml (¼ cup) olive oil 60ml (¼ cup) white wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, finely grated
2 tbsp coriander, finely chopped
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper powder

Put dressing ingredients in a bottle with lid, shake well and chill separately overnight, with pasta, vegetables, salami and olives. The next day, mix pasta, tomato quarters and the rest of ingredients in a large bowl. Pour over dressing, mix and chill until ready to serve.

Chocolate Cherry Cake

200g wheat flour
300g sugar
50g cocoa
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
100g margarine
200ml milk
2 eggs
1x 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla essence
A tiny pinch salt

For icing
250g icing sugar 100g soft butter/margarine
4 large chilled bars chocolate, grated 14 red glace cherries, cut into half
1x15ml (1 tsp) liquid e.g. milk, boiled, cooled water or fruit juice

Grease 2 20cm sandwich tins and line with greaseproof paper. Sift together all the dry ingredients. Add the margarine and 175ml of milk. Stir, beat well until smooth. Add remaining milk, eggs and vanilla. Beat for a minute. Pour into tins and bake in pre-heated oven at 180C/350F/gas mark 4, for 35-40 mins. The cake is ready when firm to touch. Cool and cut into half lengthwise and ice.

Method (icing)
Sift icing sugar and gradually add to butter with liquid, beating well until icing is smooth and easy to spread. Spread layer of icing on the top of cut piece of cake and dot with half the cherries. Cover with other half of the cake. Cover the rest of the cake with the rest of the icing. Decorate with grated chocolate and remaining cherries