It’s that time again for all those delightful dishes we look forward to the whole year! Keeping the festivities in mind, Koluu has shared with us two delicious recipes to tingle all those sweet buds…
Photographs Menaka Aravinda
Lemony Mince Pies
For the Lemony Pies, Koluu uses a regular mincemeat mix with sultanas, cherries and a few spices and adds lemon for that extra bit of freshness. He also recommends using paper muffin cases to cook the mince pies, so that the pastry would be nice and thin, and can easily be removed from the baking tin. You can serve them warm or cold adding a dusting of flour for that seasonal feeling.
50g plain flour
60g cashew-nuts or almonds, ground
75g golden icing sugar
175g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
2 egg yolks
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
2 tbsp Amaretto (almond liqueur)
1 tbsp brown sugar, to dust
12-hole muffin tin, lined with paper cases
9cm (3½ inch) and 6cm (2½ inch) pastry cutter, and mini festive cutters
Process the flour with the cashew-nuts or almonds and icing sugar and pulse for 30 seconds. Add the butter, continue until the mixture crumbles. Add the egg yolks and 1-2 tbsp of cold water and process until it comes together. Knead the dough lightly on a floured surface. Wrap and chill for one hour.
Mix the mincemeat, lemon zest and liqueur. Set the oven to 190°C and heat up a flat baking sheet.
Roll out the pastry and cut out 12 large rounds and 12 smaller rounds. Press the large rounds into each paper case and spoon 2 tsp of mincemeat. Brush the edges with water.
Use mini cutters to stamp out tiny festive shapes on the small rounds and top each mince pie, sealing the edges well. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Put the muffin tray on the hot baking sheet and then bake for 20-25 mins until it turns golden.
Even though it’s enjoyed right throughout the year, the Chocolate Roll or ‘Yule Log’ is yet another Christmassy dessert that shows up during December. Koluu’s twist on it, with a dusting of icing sugar and a strawberry garnish, gives you that warm fuzzy feeling that’s none other than Christmas!
175g plain chocolate, broken into pieces
175g caster sugar
6 eggs, separated
2 level tbsp cocoa, sieved
300ml double cream
Grease a 33 x 23 cm (13 x 9 inch) Swiss roll tin and line it with non-stick baking parchment. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water. Allow to cool. Whisk the sugar and egg yolks until light and creamy. Add the cooled chocolate, stir until blended.
Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until stiff but not dry. Stir a large spoonful into the chocolate mixture, mix gently and fold in the remaining egg whites, then the cocoa. Pour evenly into the tin. Bake in a pre-heated oven for 20 minutes until firm to the touch.
Remove the cake from the oven, leave in the tin and place a cooling rack over the top. Place a clean damp tea towel on the rack, and leave for several hours or overnight in a cool place. If the towel dries, simply re-dampen.
Whip the cream until it just holds its shape. Dust a large piece of grease proof paper with icing sugar and turn the cake out. Peel off the the lining paper, spread the whipped cream and roll up tightly like a Swiss roll, starting with one of the short edges. Use the paper to help.
“Don’t worry if the Chocolate Roll cracks – that’s quite normal and gives it that natural look. Garnish it with some strawberries or any other fruit you like to add that extra bit of flavour. The Chocolate Roll can be enjoyed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or even some whipped cream, during this ‘sweet’ time of the year…”