What a weekend! Outside the sun is blazing and the summer humidity is at a stifling high, but fortunately for us, it’s cold and cozy inside: we’re celebrating all things Christmas in July this weekend!
Christmas is my favourite time of the year, and why not enjoy it twice if you can?
Saturday was Christmas night in our house, and to celebrate, our family gathered around a fantastic (red and green) dinner of grilled lobster tails with lemon butter, followed by rich and decadent gluten-free mini chocolate yule logs that my daughter had baked for everyone. What a treat!
While we enjoyed our dessert, we (of course) huddled together and relaxed with a few Christmas movies. Honestly, we all needed the fun excuse to take a break from all that is going on right now. It was perfect.
There Can Never Be Enough Mincemeat
One of our December Christmas traditions is sitting down to a big family breakfast after all the wrapping and bows have been tossed aside. I do the cooking while my family pokes through each other’s gifts and tidies up the aftermath. Every year, our girl’s demand the same breakfast: homemade cinnamon buns, lots of bacon, poached eggs, toast, fruit, orange juice, tea and (for me) coffee.
Being the only gluten-free member of our family, I used to make my own cinnamon buns, but over the years that has changed and now I have a new tradition: homemade gluten-free scones topped with mincemeat. Yum! Such a rich and decadent way to celebrate the season.
Making my own mincemeat has become a tradition in our house and I always make a big batch, keeping some for myself, and gifting a jar or two to friends or family members. Most people think of mincemeat in the traditional sense of pies or tarts, but I use it in a variety of ways (because again, you can never get enough of it in my opinion): shortbread bars, cookies, pancakes….
If you love mincemeat as much as I do, you’ll love these holiday recipes to help you get the most out of your mincemeat during the season:
The possibilities are endless and it’s such a short season – enjoy your mincemeat any way you can, and as much as you can. Even if it means you have to celebrate Christmas twice in one year to try it in every recipe you can!
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 Tbsp allspice
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp mace
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- 1 & 1/4 cups currants
- 1 & 1/4 cups raisins
- 1 & 1/4 cups sultana raisins
- 1/2 cup mixed candied peel finely chopped
- 1 small Granny Smith apple peeled and finely chopped
- 1/2 cup butter cut into cubes
- 1/2 cup chopped almonds
- 1 cup brown sugar
- zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 2/3 cup brandy
- In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the spice mix. Set aside.
- Combine currants, raisins, sultanas, peel, apple, butter, almonds, sugar and zest and juice of lemon in a large saucepan over low heat. Add 1 tsp of the spice mix and stir gently until the butter melts. Once melted, simmer gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove saucepan from the heat and allow to cool about 30 minutes. Stir in brandy.
- Spoon mincemeat into sterilized jars and label.