On Saturday we had a little Christmas dinner among friends. It was David, Gaby, Ian, Anna and me and Christopher and we all contributed to the dinner by bringing different dishes, and the result was a great smorgasbord of Christmas food with an international touch.
Anna (who has a Russian mother and a Finnish father) served homemade blinis with smoked salmon, chives and creme fraiche as a starter. Wonderful!
Instead of a main course we had a buffet with different dishes; David and Gaby’s amazing ham, Anna’s Salad Olivier (Russian salad with boiled eggs, potatoes, carrots, beetroots, frankfurters, gherkins, grated apple and mayonnaise), roast potatoes, meatballs, anchovies bake, brussel sprouts with bacon, carrots in orange butter, green beans and a shallots and red wine gravy. Really nice! 🙂
Gaby made a lovely crumble with apple and blackberries for dessert. After that we had some Christmas sweets, the almond biscuits with cream and jam, clementines, tea, coffee and quite a lot of port.
I woke up poorly the next day though. 😦 I hate having the flu, but it is difficult to avoid it this time of year… I really hope I will be feeling better towards the end of the week, because I’m flying home to see my family and friends on Friday.
Anchovies bake, serves 6
10 large potatoes
1/2 packet anchovies with brine
300 ml cream
Grate the potatoes and the onions. Butter a regular dish and fill it halfway up with potatoes and onions. Cut the anchovies fillets in small pieces and scatter them on top. Put the rest of the potatoes and onions on top. Pour over the cream and the brine from the anchovies. Place a few dollops of butter around the dish, and sprinkle over some salt and white pepper. Lastly cover the dish with breadcrumbs. Bake in 200C for 45 mins to 1 hr. The potatoes should be soft and the top crispy.
Brussel sprouts with bacon
500 g brussel sprouts
8 slices of bacon
Trim the brussel sprouts (a really boring job, but it has to be done. Take the outer leaves off if they look manky and cut off the white bits). Boil them in salted water for 10 minutes or so. They should be softer but still quite firm.
Cut the bacon in pieces and fry them crispy in butter. Add the drained brussel sprouts, salt, pepper and grated nutmeg. Add the parsley and serve straight away.