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A very quiet one for us – but great nonetheless to kick back,  relax and feast.  The day was sunny and warm – no wind – perfect for a mid-afternoon lunch outside.  The Champagne got opened while putting the finishing touches to lunch – and ‘mmmmmmm’ it was a great drop –  Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut – delectably dry and a perfect complement to the entrées.

Our feast menu was far far too much food, but isn’t that what you do on Christmas day?  The menu:

  • Barbeque prawns with chilli and lime dressing
  • Scallop tarts with pea and mint purée
  • Ham on the bone glazed with Bourbon, orange marmalade and ginger
  • Chicken breast rolled in Bacon stuffed with Cranberries and Pinenuts
  • Roast beetroot salad, with Feta, Red Pepper and Red Onion
  • New potatoes

It was great team-work with Mr MWCED and I in the kitchen.   All came together perfectly and we even managed to have a clean kitchen at the end of the day.

BUT….. I hear you say…….. where was dessert?   Can you REALLY believe we could fit dessert in after all of the above?   We just couldn’t.  Not even later in the evening.  And Mr MWCED had made some special almond tuilles for an easy ice-cream sandwich.  Yup, we even said ‘no’ to ice-cream.

Most of the food we have made before and roll out from time to time – but the newbie for us was the Scallop Tarts.   Will definitely repeat – and hope you might enjoy trying these too:

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2 sheets frozen puff pastry
40g butter chopped
1 small onion, chopped finely ( I used a shallot)
¾ cup (90g) frozen peas
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
18 large (400g) scallops without roe
30 g micro greens
1-1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
lemon wedges to serve

Preheat oven to 220.celsius (200.celsius fan-forced). Line two oven trays with baking paper.

Cut out 8 x 10cm rounds (or whatever size you want – I made mine quite small to fit just one scallop on); place on trays. Top with another sheet of baking paper, then another baking tray (this stops pastry puffing during cooking). Bake pastry for around 12 minutes or until golden or crisp.

Melt butter in a medium pan over medium heat; cook onion until soft but not coloured. Add peas and water and bring to boil. Simmer for around 3 minutes until peas are tender. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.   Process pea mixture and mint in a small food processor until smooth, taste and adjust seasoning if required.     If made ahead, put covered in fridge and then reheat slowly in oven prior to using.

Either barbeque scallops, briefly on each side, or heat oil in frying pan and cook on stove-top.

Divide pea puree between the pastry rounds, scatter micro-greens over puree, top with scallop/s and serve.

the above will serve 8 as a starter – I halved the ingredients for 3 of us – this is an easy recipe to increase or decrease as required.