It’s the most wonderful time of the year again! With the kids jingle belling, hearts will be glowing, marshmallow roasting, there’ll be parties hosting, it’s the happiest season of all…..hold up this sounds like a Christmas carol, ha ha.
One of my favorite things to do during the holiday is to entertain family and friends. I love, watching them enjoy great food, wine and conversation. It’s what memories are made of. We all live a very busy, hectic lives and sometimes the thought of cooking could be daunting.
Cooking for the holidays doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful. Just focus on the seasonal and the freshest ingredients. Be innovative this season, make clever use of what you have in your pantry (this is a good way of getting rid of stuff) to create a memorable meal.
- 1 cup rice flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup fresh milk
- 1 piece salted duck egg, sliced
- 1/2 cup cheese, grated
- 3 pieces raw eggs
- Pre-cut banana leaf
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Combine rice flour, baking powder, and salt then mix well. Set aside.
- Cream butter then gradually put in sugar while whisking.
- Add the eggs then whisk until every ingredient is well incorporated.
- Gradually add the rice flour, salt, and baking powder mixture then continue mixing.
- Pour in coconut milk and fresh milk then whisk some more for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Arrange the pre-cut banana leaf on a cake pan or baking pan.
- Pour the mixture into the pan.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven then top with sliced salted egg and grated cheese (do not turn the oven off).
- Put back in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the color of the top turn medium brown.
- Remove from the oven and let cool.
AVOCADO ICE CREAM
- 2 large avocados
- 1 teaspoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- Heavy cream and condensed milk need to be very cold.
- Make sure to chill the bowl and the beaters in the freezer for about 20 to 30 minutes as well.
- Start beating the cream at low speed to build smaller bubbles for a stable foam. When the mixture begins to thicken, increase the speed to medium, and continue to beat until you reach stiff peaks.
- Add the blended avocados to the whipped cream in thirds and fold in gently with a flexible spatula to prevent the whipped cream from deflating.
- Put it on a plastic or metal ice cream container & freeze the ice cream for at least 6-8 hours.
SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons (90g) salted butter, room temperature cut up into 6 pieces
- 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon salt
Heat granulated sugar in a medium heavy-duty saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly with a high heat resistant rubber spatula or wooden spoon. Sugar will form clumps and eventually melt into a thick brown, amber-colored liquid as you continue to stir. Be careful not to burn.
Once sugar is completely melted, immediately stir in the butter until melted and combined. Be careful in this step because the caramel will bubble rapidly when the butter is added. If you notice the butter separating or if the sugar clumps up, remove the pan from heat and vigorously whisk to combine it again. (If you’re nervous about the splatter, wear kitchen gloves. Keep whisking until it comes back together, even if it takes 3-4 minutes. It will eventually stop– just keep whisking. Return to heat when it’s combined again.)
After the butter has melted and combined with the caramelized sugar, cook for 2 minutes without stirring. Very slowly stir in a half cup of heavy cream. Since the heavy cream is colder than the hot caramel, the mixture will rapidly bubble when added. After all the heavy cream has been added, stop stirring and allow to boil for 1 minute. It will rise in the pan as it boils.
Remove from heat and stir in the salt. Allow to slightly cool down before using. Caramel thickens as it cools.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chef Aries is currently mastering his craft at Pauls Pizza Steakhouse while also working on his music by recording and covering songs of different genres on the side.