Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas 2009

Christmas is only celebrated for one day here. I can't imagine how people can go back to work on Boxing Day, but luckily this year, B. Day fell on a Saturday. Well, maybe two days of celebration if you include the eve because most of us have Christmas dinner on the eve. Which means you can suddenly find yourself with nothing to do and no where to go on Christmas night. But lucky for us, we've been busy eating at home and at friends'. Wonderful isn't it, to just eat and talk and laugh with friends and family.

We had about 18 people over on Christmas Eve, a perfect number I think because it is more cosy and manageable than my previous Christmas dinners of 30 to 40 guests. I am beginning to change how I entertain at home. A smaller number is much more intimate and meaningful. This year, instead of a casual buffet, I did a sit down dinner and we all agreed later that it was much nicer than buffet-style. Just a little bit more effort was needed to put the tables together and arrange the sitting. It worked because my kids and Yi's friend G from Melbourne served the guests, and everything went very well because of the extra help. I found out later that Ming had thought that the leaf salad was dressed (it wasn't) and everybody was eating plain rabbit food. Otherwise, we had a great time but we forgot to make New Year's resolutions so we'll have to have another party for that. We did celebrate the best Christmas present for our family: Wey did unexpectedly well in his PMR exams. The results were released Christmas Eve morning. Now I just have to find a way to get out of the promise I made him--a trip to Japan.


We ate out in the back patio, so eat your hearts out, those having a white Christmas.


The kids made a sangria with a whole bottle of champagne...



Appetizer served by the kids became a full plate of baked crab & lobster gratin, grilled prawns & mushrooms, serrano ham and rock melon roll and the un-dressed salad.


Turkey with chestnut stuffing, a yummy Italian pumpkin dish made by G, a beet and apple salad that received high marks and scalloped potatoes with anchovies.


This was my favorite item: panettone. Panettone is the best substitute for the traditional fruit cake because it is much more healthier. This panettone turned out unbelievably good, especially with coffee. I have decided to make it my traditional Christmas food.


Of course, for our climate, I always make traditional English trifle. Everybody loved this, and I made it the next day to bring to a friend's party, and again the next day for another party. The only problem was, the whole town ran out of fresh cream on Christmas Eve! Luckily I bought 2 bottles of Australian Bulla heavy cream two days before so the first trifle was the best because the next too were made with Nestle reduced cream, which is not as good and much more expensive too. Btw, get your Bulla cream and other western foodstuff at the wholesaler, Lim Lee Seng, near Supertanker. SO much cheaper and fresher.



Thank God for G who made these choc chips and pecan shortbread cookies in lighting time. I've always disliked making cookies because I haven't got the patience but G proved to me that it's no hassle. And the cookies were delicious!


Anonymous said...

Merry (belated) Xmas! I'd rather b @ UR fabulous backyard party than a white Xmas. As usual, UR pictures speak volume. Could almost sense d food aroma & hear d Xmas music playing in d background ...... Excellant host!

Whising U & d family a very Happy New Year!

Mike C

Precious Pea said...

What a lovely Christmas spread! I really envy all your invited guests! I love Boxing day here..had so much fun shopping yesterday.

Wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year in advance!

Edith said...

Your spread of Christmas goodies is awesome.

Merry Christmas.

NEE said...

MErry Christmas to you and family. i love looking beautiful dinner set ups. yours is one of them, gorgeous. can i come for dinner too. hehe...

tracieMoo said...

I would definitely have to agree with you that having everyone seated on one table is better than having a buffet. I see great family teamwork getting your own parts done, and the food was great so I guess the undressed salad wasn't much of a problem. I enjoyed reading this post. Have a Happy New Year :)

Mina said...

Yes, like Precious Pea, I envy your guests. What beautiful settings and delicious spread of Christmas specialties! Merry Christmas and congratulations to your kid!

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

I wish I can be your guest as I really want to taste all these lovely foods, all look just yummy !! Happy Holidays!!

Big Boys Oven said...

A belated Christmas wishes to you and your family, have a great New Year! from us the boys!

Zurin said...

Whata feast Terri! my kind of setting...not more than 20 guests and a seated dinner....and all those food AND help! lol :)))) happy new year

LianneK said...

What a feast! Everything looks extra, EXTRA yummy and scrumptous! Merry Christmas Terri and have a great 2010!

ganache-ganache said...

I've got all the cream in KK :P
Loved your panettone, care to share the recipe ?

Here's wishing you & your family a Happy New Year.

Anonymous said...

Terrie, Your family is sooo lucky to have you:) Great mom and a wonderful cook! I jealouslah! ;)

Unknown said...

Darn, you made me hungry... woots~ Prosciutto and rock melon!

su said...

hi terri,

your christmas party photos are awesome! can you care to share your english trifle recipe? it looks really yummy.

btw, i sent you an email about my HK trip with my girlfriends last month and how we visited those makan places with help culled from your blog. wonder if you received it?

wishing you a meaningful year ahead!


triShie said...

Hi Terri!
a belated Merry Christmas and an awesome New Years 2010 to you and family!!!

TeaLady said...

Merry Christmas, Terri, and Happy New Year. Your table is beautiful. ANd the feast looks to die for. 18 people. wow. we only had 9, but it was a quiet Christmas.

looking for to your 2010 poss.

terri@adailyobsession said...

mike: hello, happy new year to you n family!

pp: happy new year!

edith: happy new year!

nee: anytime:) happy new year!

tracie: happy new year!

mina; Thank you; happy new year!

sonia: remind me again b4 christmas this year :) Happy new year!

bbo: boys, happy new year!

zurin: it was fun :D happy new year!

lianne: you too, happy new year!

ganache: i did think of asking u :DD happy new year!

anon: photos can be deceiving..happy new year!

johnathan: happy new year to u n wifey!

su: didn't i reply u? oh dear, i must spend some time on replying emails this week. happy new year!

trishie: happy new year! how r u??

tealady: happy new year! me too, i check ur posts every day :))

triShie said...

heeyyy terri. i'm doing good, thanks for asking! finding myself an alien to the blogsphere again. been mia too many times.

i really miss coming to your blog and when i do, i'm always entertained! :)

the lunch guy said...

sorry to be late to the party, but better late than never.

as always, looks great.

i see that you make reference to scalloped potatoes with anchovies. also known as jansson's frestelse (janssons's temptation). i love this dish. some of these taters accompanied with a thick slice of seared ham or grilled sausages makes a perfect lunch or quick dinner. and any leftovers with poached eggs at breakfast time is a great way to start the day.

i first came across this dish back in '78 when i was working at a country in that had an international day every week. we would pick a country and develop a small specials menu of their cuisine. this was not only an effort to stimulate customer interest but it was also self-serving. everyone in the kitchen wanted to learn new things and not just cook the regular menu all of the time. needless to say, it was a great success and it kept bringing regulars back because they weren't bored with our menu.

the dish is quite simplistic and relies on only a few ingredients. these links here will take you to 2 recipes i find to be accurate. my only watch points would be that when this is made be certain you have the best anchovies and cream you can find. further, unsalted butter is good, the 'chovies will add enough salt as it is. the rest is a breeze. and last but not least, the tates can be sliced thin, cut into matchsticks or shredded, it all depends on the look and texture you prefer. if you are plating p the dinners sliced is great, if it is a buffet, your guests will find the other configurations easier to spoon form the casserole dish.

this 1st recipe incorporates a topping of bread crumbs, which is what i like to do. affords one more layer of texture and flavor:

viv said...

Hi Teri,
Can you share the recipe to your Trifle? There are so many versions on the internet. Did you use custard? Or just cream?
I'm attempting to make it next Friday. Many thanks.

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