Tuesday, 27 December 2011


Before I start anything.. here is my awesome Christmas present! Thanks parents! My first sewing machine. I also got framed art and some money to go to an embroidery class with Lara Sparks (check her out!) which I am very excited about. She has some awesome stuff on her website.

I made dinner on Christmas Eve. I saw this recipe on Pinterest and have been wanting to do it for a starter since. Now I'm home I don't have to pay for expensive fresh scallops myself! The recipe was a total success. It is so easy and simple. It must have been a fluke as I've never cooked scallops before but I seem to have cooked them for the perfect amount of time.

We bought the scallops two days before I cooked them and it was fine.

Season both sides of the scallops with plenty of salt and pepper.

Get the pan at it's hottest with a thin layer of olive oil.

Depending on the size (mine were fairly big) cook for two minutes on the first side and one minute on the second. My hob turned off while I was doing this for some reason so I cooked them a tiny bit longer as you want to get them nice and brown like below.

Plate up then immediately, then stick a large helping of butter (depending on the number of scallops you're doing) in the pan and mix it with the remnants of the burnt scallop.

Pour some white wine in until heated (won't take long!) then ta-da! You have this wonderful looking starter as below. The green is chopped parsley and in my opinion wouldn't be half as good without it.

For the main course I made crispy duck with a cherry sauce accompanied by parsley mash potato. I'm not sure if you can get this in the UK or the US, but I used Confit de Canard - already cooked legs of duck in duck fat.. tinned. It sounds a bit awful but the meat is unbelievably tender. It was so simple to make - knock off most of the fat then cook in the oven for around half an hour.. and you get perfect, fall off the bone, crispy skinned, leg of duck.. 

The cherry sauce was a Delia recipe, and can be found here. I had to bring the "Forest Feast sour cherries" and the "Morello Cherry Conserve" over from the UK but I'm sure substitutes would work just as well. 

For Boxing Day I contributed to the table with my own recipe of Christmas cabbage. 

1 red cabbage - thinly sliced
2 red onions - finely chopped
100g butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup port
1 cup orange juice

Melt the butter in a large(r than you think!) pan then cook the onions until soft.

Add the cinnamon and cook for a further minute or two.

Add the cabbage

I had about this much left as it was HUGE and I couldn't fit any more in the pan.

Add the sugar, port, orange juice, S&P and cook on a medium heat, stirring frequently, for at least 30 minutes.

It's ready when you have got it to your preferred consistency. I like it still with a crunch.

If you're reading this I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and have a great New Year's Eve planned!

1 comment:

  1. Ooh, scallops are my favourite treat :) And those look gorgeous. Great sewing machine, you lucky girl :)