02 January 2011

And so that was Christmas... a lot of food and good times with family + friends

I know. A week has past since Christmas day. I have read other blogs recounting Christmas foods and have been delighted. I am back in Melbourne now, and going to follow through on my promise of showing you what was eaten on Christmas day and beyond. Oh the food!

My parents are appreciators of fine food. Which is probably why I am. My Mum is an amazing cook, and she and I (well, she mostly) prepared a Christmas feast. Actually, most of my holiday was spent eating.

Here is how we started Christmas day. Gone are the 5.00 am wake ups. I gave those up when I worked in retail - Christmas day was my only sleep in! I was up at around 8.00 am. A freshly laid duck egg in my Noddy eggcup (Dad's was in his Liverpool eggcup), cheesy toast and baked beans.
My parents now have ducks. There are seven living in the former dog run. They are quite funny - they love to splash about in the makeshift ponds - a plastic doll's pram and the giant clamshell paddling pool we bought for Toby dog (but he was afraid of water!).


The day before Christmas Mum and I prepared some meat. This made it easier on Christmas day - less cooking. Mum basted a goose. I made stuffing, I heard the recipe on an American cooking podcast I download (The Splendid Table or KCRW Good Food - can't recall which one).

The ingredients were: sage and parsley from the garden
Two small onions from the garden and some dried apricots
A duck egg
Two gingerbread men
All mixed together with a small bit of butter and salt and pepper in the food processor
And pork mince mixed in post food processing
Here is Mum stuffing the duck with the gingerbread stuffing. She boned it. Clever!
The rolled duck
And the cooked duck. So delicious. The stuffing was divine. Note, this is not one of my parents' ducks.
On Christmas day we had the duck, some goose, and ham,
Potatoes and pumpkin in goose fat
Snow peas and baby carrots
My plate of food:
Dessert was meringues filled with yoghurt and topped with berries.
This is me with Mum and Dad on Christmas afternoon. I had a great stay with them.
At night, we took my grandfather back to his house and went to our friends in Albury for another feast. There were two kangaroos on their property.
The gorgeous table settting
We ate veal rolls - stuffed with blue cheese and garnished with fried sage
Prawns and lobster
Mum's mango salsa (tomato, coriander, mango)
Rocket and pumpkin salad
Mum's potato salad with home made mayonaise
There was also cold turkey and ham, and berries and King Island cream for dessert.

I love this picture :)
It was a wonderful Christmas, spent with family and friends. Lots of laughs were had, and beautiful presents were given. Gift giving is my favourite part of Christmas, and I think my loved ones liked my gifts. I bought Mum some cute earrings - spun silver birds nest filled with pearl eggs and mother of pearl birds, and bought Dad a home brew voucher. Other presents I gave were handmade hairclips, a magnetic boyfriend, a stamp set, a book on macarons, a pocket mirror, nailpolish, a passport wallet, some resin bowls, fairy babushka dolls, a Sia CD, VW bookmarks, a cinema voucher, babushka doll measuring spoons, a games shop voucher, two earring trees, a luggage tag, a Lavalier ceramic brooch, a silver bird necklace and a scarf.

I have not yet unpacked my presents to photograph them - but I can give you a quick rundown of what I received: A travel voucher, some money, a Coles Myer voucher, a cheese slicer, some olive oil, a bracelet, a Mimco purse set and hairclips, a book on thrift, Heston Blumenthal DVD from the Not Quite Nigella blog, a Borders voucher (for birthday and Christmas), some home made shortbread, pyjama pants, coasters, a Christmas decoration and a notebook. Here are two gifts - the Mimco set and notebook. I was very spoilt - thank you to everyone who bought me something - I am so lucky! :)

On Boxing Day we carried out tradition of visiting friends on a milking farm in country Victoria and staying for lunch. We've been doing this since 1989 - when I met one of the girls in the Royal Children's Hospital. They have cows, sheep, horses and pigs.

When we returned, we went to my parent's neighbours for drinks.
The drink I have is peach schnapps, strawberry liquer, citrus vodka and ginger beer. My own impromptu invention. It was very nice.

The next day I caught up with an old school friend over morning tea. We spent a lovely morning, chatting, looking to bright futures, and shopping. She's going through a tough time but is really optimistic. And she's also on my list of really brainy people that I know - about to hand in her PhD! Good luck, R!

Dad had planned a cheese lunch - we ate Pyengana cheese and pickles. The cheese is from Tasmania, made in April. It is a sharp cheddar, hard and crumbly.

In the late afternoon, some more friends stopped by. I had met their son in a different hospital when I was about eight too. We mostly talked about food. And marveled how we've maintained our friendship after meeting in hospital all those years ago.

And of course, we ate food!

These are beautiful homemade shortbread biscuits that my manager gave to me. They have dried fruit in them. So yummy.
And Mum made this citrus tart, which was made with duck eggs and home grown lemons. Delicious beyond words. Fruity desserts are my favourite.

That's the bulk of the food eaten on my Christmas break. I have one more food related blog from the Christmas break to share - a review of my favourite cafe in Albury. Look out for it soon! We went to that cafe on Mum's birthday. Here is one of the other pictures from that special day.
I had such a nice holiday! Thanks Mum and Dad and the friends I saw :) There are few days until I return to work and in this time, I plan to tidy my room, sort my wardrobe, clean the fridge, spend some voucher, do some writing/plan article and see a movie. Can I fit it all in??

10 comments:

  1. Yayayayyaa LOVE the food shots Carly!! It looks like you had a peaceful, happy Christmas on the farm.

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  2. Wow, all that food looks amaaaaazing! I have never eaten duck eggs - your parents ducks are so sweet! My parents used to own geese - cute, but very loud.
    Love all your outfits, those photos of you and your parents are just gorgeous. Oh and gift giving is my favourite part of Christmas too - I get ridiculously excited! xx

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  3. WOW, that noddy eggcup is SO cute!! merry xmas!x

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  4. I agree, that Noddy egg cup is awesome!
    Love your blog Carly, you have a very engaging and witty style of writing.
    All the best for 2011! :-)

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  5. I've just returned from dinner, stuffed to the brim, and your pictures still made me drool! Amazing pics!

    Happy new year to you, Carly!

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  6. Epic Christmas post, I love it! First off, omg I want your Noddy eggcup so badly!! Where did you get it from? Secondly, I love your festive outfits. And your festive food too! Great job on that stuffing, yum! Thirdly, your family looks so lovely and happy to have you home! Their ducks are super cute too. Lastly, your mum's citrus tart looks ridiculously amazing. I agree, fruity deserts are beautiful.
    Heidi xo

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  7. Thanks for your kind words on this post :)
    Mum will be pleased you all love the look of her cooking! She should start a restaurant!
    The Noddy eggcup was bought years ago. I've had it since I was three or four? They are rare!

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  8. You and your Mum are so beautiful together! I think she should start a cooking blog, everything she made looks absolutely delicious. If she starts a restaurant, she'll have to be able to deliver to the western US...actually, on second thought, I'd rather come to her place for take-out! :)

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