If you’re looking to spice things up in the kitchen this Christmas, you’ve come to the right place. We have put together a go-to guide on how to turn everyday ingredients, spices and herbs into different festive goodies! Here’s how to experience a delicious holiday season.
Read on to find out more. Happy Holidays!
1. Festive Spice Rub
A great spice rub for pork, chicken or salmon! Simply blend 4 parts sea salt with 2 parts of dried cracked rosemary until the mixture is fairly ground. Add 2 parts minced garlic and 1 part coarse ground black pepper until the spice rub is well-blended and you’re done!
Use a pestle and mortar if you can to allow the herbs to fully release and bring out its aroma and flavour! If you don’t have dried cracked rosemary, simply put dried rosemary into a disposable bag and pound it with a rolling pin until the dried rosemary breaks apart!
Cole & Mason Ceramic Pestle & Mortar
Cole & Mason INVERTA Flip Back Acrylic Pepper And Salt Mill
2. Spice Mixes for Baking
Prepare a batch of aromatic spice mix for baking cookies and pies, or store them in little glass containers as Christmas gifts for friends and family.
All you need is cinnamon (1 tbsp), nutmeg (1 tsp), ground ginger (1/2 tsp), allspice (1/4 tsp) and cloves (1/4 tsp). Simply grind these whole spices in a spice grinder, give it a little shake-up with a whisk and you’re all set.
Try adding a dash of it into your apple pie filling before baking – the aroma alone adds an instant festive touch to your Christmas dessert table!
3. Sugar? Yes, please!
Flavoured sugar is all the rage now – they are great as Christmas gifts, and add an instant burst of flavour to your culinary creations. Here’s two to get you started:
Lemon & Mint Sugar
What you need: Rind of 1 lemon, handful of fresh mint leaves, ¼ cup granulated sugar
1. Microwave the lemon rind and mint leaves separately until completely dry (make sure not to burn it!)
2. Finely chop the lemon rind and mint leaves
3. Add sugar and process till very finely ground
Basil & Lime Sugar
What you need: Rind of 1 lime, handful of basil leaves, ¼ cup granulated sugar
1. Microwave the lime rind and basil leaves until completely dry (make sure not to burn it!)
2. Finely chop the lime rind and basil leaves
2. Add sugar and process till very finely ground
Feel free to mix and match your favourite herb and fruit – strawberry and basil, peach and mint… the possibilities are endless!
4. Fancy Flavours – DIY Herb-infused Olive Oil
Herb-infused olive oil is a perfect way to jazz up a salad, drizzle over a plate of pasta, or as an appetizer served with slices of artisan bread! Instead of using store-bought herb-infused olive oil, try making it yourself! It’s simple and best of all – there are no added preservatives or additives! Here are some of our favourite flavour combinations:
Garlic & Chilli Olive Oil
What you need: 3 roasted whole garlic, red chilli flakes (4 tsp), 2 cups olive oil
1. Combine roasted garlic cloves, red chilli flakes and oil in a saucepan and bring to a low simmer
2. Allow to cool. Place garlic cloves into bottle and add remaining oil
3. Seal and refrigerate up to 1 month
Rosemary Olive Oil
What you need: 2 cups olive oil, 6-8 sprigs fresh rosemary sprigs
1. Combine oil and rosemary in a saucepan and bring to a low simmer.
2. Allow to cool. Place rosemary sprigs into bottle and add remaining oil
3. Seal and refrigerate up to 1 month
5. Christmas Snowballs!
A perfectly creamy chocolate truffle is your answer when it comes to satisfying that sweet tooth this festive season. Add a few cracks of black pepper to spice things up – you’d be surprised that the combination works really well! Here’s a handy dandy recipe:
What you need: 150g chopped good-quality dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids), 150ml heavy cream, 25g unsalted butter, cracked black pepper, toppings of your choice
1. Heat the cream and butter on low heat till fully melted. Remove from heat and pour over chopped chocolate. Leave it untouched for 5 minutes
2. Stir until smooth. Add a few cracks of black pepper – taste and adjust to your liking!
3. To shape your truffles, use a melon baller or a mini-scoop and scoop the mixture. Shape it with your hands and place onto silicone baking mat or greaseproof paper to prevent sticking.
4. Coat with powdered sugar, nuts or any toppings you desire!
The best thing about these truffles is that you can customize and personalize them however you like! We love the combination of chopped pistachios and dried cranberries!