Thursday, December 16, 2010

Chef in Action: Christmas Edition

Christmas. . .. a perfect time for friends and families get together for some heart warming food and drinks.  This year, Chris and I decided to host a Christmas party at my place.                                                                                                                        The logic is simple:  we always go away in Christmas and we never get to attend any of the friends' parties.  So we will host one ... 2 weeks before Christmas.  We (well I) also sent out the invites before Halloween .. just in case (talking about being a control freak!)  Part of the fun of hosting a party is that I get to decorate the place + wrapping gifts and what's in for Chris you may ask? well he gets to cook and bake to show off his culinary talents!

For this year's Christmas party, Chris and I decided (well under my dictatorship) that we will make Macarons as takeaway for our guests.  Special Thanks to Williams Sonoma for the very tasty recipe.  Here is how we started:

Very important ingredient: Cream of Tartar!  We initially thought we could substitute with baking soda.  BIG MISTAKE!!  Our first attempt was a total disaster.  They looked ok in the oven but they didn't last... they deflated the moment they came out from the oven.  

Tips from Chef: don't let any egg yokes mixed in with the whites.

Love my KitchenAid Mixer!  Looks great and practical.  The only downside is: it is SO heavy!
and I got assigned the very important job of actually "making" these little Macaroons.

In the oven at 325F and 10 minutes later:

Here is what we have baked ... and hm... our secret ingredient:

These little macaroons are very delicate and so when spreading the filling, make sure you go gentle:

Here is the chocolate ones, we decided to play up the "black and white" theme.

Guests loved them and so did we!  They are actually surprisingly easy to make and you should give it a shot too!

Now here comes the traditional German Cake.  I will have to say, it's both good looking and extremely tasty!

Here is what you need: a dough and fillings.  In our case, the filling is poppie seed paste (Mohn Fix) from Germany

Chef in action: rolling the dough ... and for me, loving my counter top!

Step 2: Apply a thin layer of the filling and then start rolling:

Step 3: Form the roll into a circle, mark a star design on the roll, and brush the egg yoke on the roll to glaze

Tips from Chef: alternatively, you can also cut up the roll in small pieces and just let them baked that way.  Easy to do and super fast to bake.

In the oven at 170C for about 30 mins and here is our tasty treat!

We also made a Tiramisu as well and here is my moment to shine: coco dust design (hm. .. by Martha)

Here is the last of the three parts Christmas Special.  Hope you'd enjoyed some of the ideas we have this year from decor to DIYs to yummy food.  All these ideas are simple to follow and it is very rewarding to see the ideas come to life!  Try some of them, you won't be disappointed!

1 comment:

  1. Tim - I need your email address! Please contact me at