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    Sunday, December 21, 2008

    Counting Down For Christmas

    It’s getting busy and I love it.
    Of course, as everyone does, I am making lists in my sleep.

    I have been up the last few mornings in the middle of the night.
    Can’t sleep, so I have been doing chores.

    On Saturday morning at 4am, I wrapped the Christmas presents.
    That job - Done

    I then drove 60 kms to Matakana to buy duck fat, only to find that the Duck man no longer has a stall there. What a pain BUT I do have some duck fat. We will have to supplement it with clarified butter and olive oil.
    Of course this is for the roast potatoes on Christmas Day.

    On my return, I settled myself in the kitchen to make Vegetable Fritters for the Celebration Party, being held at our son and daughter-in-law’s house that night.

    Helen’s brother Neil and his American Bride Nikki are here for Christmas and the summer holiday.
    They got married in September. Helen took Sophia our granddaughter to North Carolina for the Wedding.
    They rented a house on a beautiful beach and partied for a week.
    Here is our 11 year old Sophia in the Kitchen with her Uncle Neil (a chef)
    She has inherited the family passion for food.
    I love the concentration.
    We weren’t able to go, so we celebrated here on Saturday.
    Son Dan reading his wedding speech to the happy couple.
    Of course there was excellent food. Ciabatta rubbed with garlic and tomato.
    Very good guacamole, Spicy Tuna wraps and Dan also made some scrumptious meat balls with a very spicy chili yogurt dip.
    Sophia requested that my contribution be the Vege Fritters.
    A version of this recipe was the first blog I ever did back in February 2006.
    How about that?

    It is cheap and easy, just a little time frying the fritters but that’s not too hard
    The secret is to toss the vege in the flour before adding the eggs
    The same way you flour fruit for a fruit cake.
    This makes about 50 little fritters
    By the way when it is not corn season use frozen corn.

    Vegetable Fritters

    2 carrots grated
    2 courgette grated
    2 cobs fresh corn micro waved - 2 minutes per cob
    3 spring onions chopped
    Sea salt and black freshly ground black pepper
    Zest 1 lemon grated
    1 cup Self Rising flour
    3 large eggs

    Vegetable oil for frying

    Remove kernels off corn cobs
    Add to carrots, courgettes and spring onions.
    Add lemon zest and season with S & P
    Toss the vege with the flour
    Beat the eggs and add
    Cook one and check for seasoning adjust if necessary
    Cook small spoonfuls over medium heat in your best vegetable oil.

    You can prepare these ahead.
    Just reheat for about 5 minutes in a 180C oven

    A little squeeze of lemon juice over them before serving.

    I can assure they will just jump off the plate.

    My husband sailed north on Thursday to Whangaroa. About 180 miles away.
    A delivery trip in preparation for our summer holiday up there.
    It took them 3 days of lovely sailing, fishing eating and I suspect drinking a little too much.
    Of course he and the crew had to get back here so I drove up to pick them up. It takes me about 3 1/2 hours.
    Whangaroa is a beautiful place. I am also taken with this little house just as you drive into the town. So I stopped and took the shot. Cute eh?
    By the time I arrived they had packed the boat in the marina where it will stay till we drive back up on the 27th December.
    Here is Cajun Moon in all her glory with son-in-law Chris preparing to disembark.
    So we arrived home safely.

    This morning while making my lists of things to do in the next 3 days, I decided to make the stuffing balls for Christmas and freeze them.
    They are fabulous if you don't want to stuff your poultry. Everyone loves stuffing.

    They were a it different than I normally make, and this is a keeper they are great.
    This amount makes 20 balls. I have to make a second batch there is not enough. So I will make more this afternoon

    Stuffing Balls for Christmas Day

    4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
    1 corn cob micro waved 2 minutes, kernels removed

    1 shallot finely chopped (About 2 tablespoons)
    2 tablespoon olive oil
    8-10 sage leaves chopped

    3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
    3 tablespoons parsley finely chopped
    8 dried apricots finely chopped
    1/2 cup dried cranberries finely chopped
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    2 eggs
    1/4 cup chicken stock

    More olive oil

    Gently sauté the shallot in the oil
    Add sage leaves and let cook about a minute
    This develops the flavour.

    Meanwhile toss everything into a big bowl

    Form balls with wet hands
    Fry in olive oil till brown..

    These can be served at room temperature.
    If you freeze them
    Just thaw them and pop into 180C oven for about 5 minutes, to freshen them up.
    Surround your poultry with these little balls.
    They are delicious.
    So another job done!

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