Dish up a scrumptious feast that won’t break the bank this Christmas

What you need to know:

The merry-making season is here and now that we have some time on our hands, what better way to celebrate with our loved ones than bringing to life those recipes you have read in books or watched in movies?

The recipes of this Christmas feast are simple but scrumptious and will neither break your back nor your bank balance!


This goat curry is delicious and has a rich, unique flavour that goes well with most staples.

Ingredients (Serves 6)

  • 2 kg lean goat meat, cut into medium-size pieces
  • 2 medium-size onions, sliced
  • 5 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp ginger, minced
  • 1 heaped tbsp beef masala
  • 2 tsps curry powder
  • 1 chicken stock cube, crumbled up
  • 3 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1½ tbsp. Royco, mixed with a little water

Salt to taste


1. Put the meat in a large saucepan, pour in enough water to just cover it, add 1 tsp of salt and boil until just cooked.

2. In another large pan, heat the oil and brown the meat stirring frequently. Add the beef masala, curry powder, stock cube and onions and cook stirring for a few minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook stirring for a few more seconds without burning the garlic.

3. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste and cook stirring for a few minutes. Add a little water and continue cooking until the tomatoes are cooked. Add the Royco mixture and cook scrapping any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan into the curry.

4. Add enough water to make a thick sauce, reduce the heat and simmer for a few more minutes before turning off the heat.


Hasselback potatoes make a delicious side dish that is delightful to the eyes. This dish is best served hot, so start preparing it towards the end of your cooking.

Ingredients (Serve 6)

l 24 large potatoes, unpeeled

l 2½ tbsp oil

l 4 tbsp salted butter

l 2 tsp garlic powder

l Finely grated rind of 3 large lemons

l 1 cup (g) parmesan cheese, finely grated

l 2 tbsp finely chopped parsley

l 1 tsp salt and ½ tsp ground black pepper


1. Mix the butter with lemon zest and put aside. Preheat the oven to 425F/210C/gas mark 5. Line a large baking tray with aluminum foil. Mix the salt with the black pepper and put aside.

2. Wash the potatoes using a soft cloth to remove the dirt without damaging the skin.

3. Place each clean, unpeeled potato in the hollow of a large wooden spoon and slice into thin slices without slicing through to the bottom of the potato, so that the potato stays intact.

4. Put the potatoes on the aluminum foil. Mix the garlic powder with the olive oil and gently brush over and between the potato slices. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper mixture and bake for 50-55 minutes, or until fairly tender. (The potatoes slices should open up at this stage.)

5. Gently brush the tops and between the slice with the lemon butter mixture.

6. Sprinkle the cheese between the slice of the potatoes and continue baking until the potatoes are fully tender. Brush the potatoes with the oil from the baking sheet and sprinkle over parsley. Serve hot.


Cassava cheese is yummy and easy to prepare. The cheese sauce in this recipe makes a large batch, so that you can save some in the fridge, to make another batch of cassava cheese, or any other cheese dish of your choice.


  • 2kg cassava peeled, washed
  • 250g butter/margarine
  • 2 small chicken stock cubes, crumbled up
  • 750ml or more milk
  • 200g plain flour
  • 250g cheese, grated
  • 1 level tsp ground black pepper
  • Aromat to taste
  • Hot water


1. Cut the cassava into medium-size cubes and boil in a large pan with the stock cubes and ½ tsp of salt, until cooked but fairly firm.

2.         Make the cheese sauce by melting the butter/margarine in a large saucepan. Add the flour, black pepper and ½ tsp of salt and cook stirring for a few minutes. Gradually whisk in the milk and bring to a boil whisking constantly, until thickened. Whisk in more milk if necessary to make a thick, pourable consistency.

3. Stir in the cheese until melted. Thin the sauce with hot water, so that it is thick, but pours easily.

4. Drain the cassava and put it in half of the cheese sauce (save the rest future use). The cassava should be covered by the cheese sauce, so top it up with some hot water if necessary. Stir gently, bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes, before serving.


Your family will love this tasty fried chicken, which crispy on the outside and nice and juicy on the inside.

  • Ingredients (Serves 6)
  • 2kg chicken, cut into 12 pieces
  • ½ litre plain yoghurt
  • 2 tsp Royco
  • 1 small chicken stock cube, crumbled
  • 1 tsp Aromat
  • ½ tsp each salt and ground black pepper
  • Oil for deep-frying


1. Put the chicken in a container. Mix 1 tsp Aromat and the stock cube into the yoghurt and pour it over the chicken pieces. Chill in the fridge overnight, turning occasionally.

2. Mix the flour with the Royco, salt and black pepper and put it in a large plastic bag. Add the chicken pieces and shake vigourously to coat well.

3. Place the coated chicken on a large tray and cover with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Leave it there until the flour forms a paste-like consistency.

4. Heat enough oil for deep-frying on high heat. Brown the chicken on both sides and then reduce the heat, cover the pan and cook for about 30 minutes. Return the heat to high briefly and fry until extra crispy. Drain well before serving.


Cleanse your palate with this fresh vegetable salad. 

Ingredients (Serves 6)

  • 2 large heads of lettuce, shredded
  • 3 large carrots, cut into match sticks strips
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 large red bell peppers, cut into match stick strips
  • 2 large green bell peppers, cut inti match stick strips
  • Leaves of 5 coriander stems, chopped

For the dressing

  • 22.5ml (1½ tbsp) fresh lemon juice
  • 45ml (3 tbsp) olive oil
  • 1 tsp Aromat


1. Gently mix the salad ingredients in a large bowl so that they are evenly distributed. Chill in a closed container in the fridge, until ready to serve.

2. When ready to serve, put the dressing ingredients in a small bottle, close the lid and shake vigourously until emulsified (creamed). Pour over the salad and gently mix to coat all the ingredients.


This simple cocktail is a show-stopper that is bound to impress your family and friends! It is best to pour the juices in the glasses just before serving.

Ingredients (Serves 6)

  • 1 large, ripe watermelon
  • 6 large mangoes
  • 4 cups crushed, frozen ice
  • 6 small slices of lemon (garnish)
  • Sugar to taste
  • Vanilla ice-cream (optional)


1. Cut the watermelon in small pieces and remove all the seeds with the tip of a sharp knife. Peel the mango and cut into small pieces. Freeze in separate containers.

2. Blend the mango with 2 cups crushed ice until smooth. Add sugar to your taste and return it to the fridge.

3. Wash and dry the blender and blend the watermelon with 2 cups crushed ice until smooth. Add sugar to your taste.

4. Pour a little of the blended mango juice into each glass. Slowly and carefully pour some of the watermelon juice over the mango juice, so that one juice is on top of the other and does not mix much. Make a small slit on one side of each lemon slice and fix it to the edge of each glass. Top each glass with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream, if you wish. Serve straight away.


Round off your Christmas feast with this rich, luxuriant coconut cake.


  • 360g (3 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 200g (1 cup) sugar
  • 2¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • A pinch salt
  • 227g (1 cup) butter/margarine, room temperature
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 240ml (1 cup) milk, room temperature
  • 10ml (2 tsp) vanilla essence
  • 100g (1 cup) desiccated coconut
  • For the buttercream
  • 150g icing sugar
  • 75g butter/margarine, softened
  • 1 tbsp vanilla essence
  • 1 cup or more desiccated coconut


1. Preheat the oven to 350F/177C/gas mark 4 and grease and line two 9’’ (23cm) round cake pans.

2. In a large mixing bowl sieve together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the butter/margarine and mix together with a paddle attachment of an electric mixer or with a wooden spoon, until the mixture is crumbly.

3. Add the eggs, milk and vanilla and mix at low speed until well combined. Increase the speed to medium and beat until fluffy, about 1 minute.

4. Fold in the desiccated coconut. Divide the batter between the two prepared pans smoothing out the top. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Cool the cake in the pan for 20 minutes before inverting on a cooling rack to cool completely.

5. Put the butter/margarine and vanilla in a mixing bowl and beat on medium speed for a few minutes. Gradually add the icing sugar and continue beating on medium speed until well mixed. Increase the speed to high and beat until fluffy.

6. Sandwich the two cakes together with the buttercream and spread the rest on the top and sides of the cake. Cover the top and sides with desiccated coconut.

I wish you all a merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!