Christmas is a time of celebration and indulgence, but this does not mean that you and your family cannot eat healthily while still indulging. These Christmas recipes are easy to prepare, and are healthy and nutritious.
Red and White Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette
This salad of fruits and vegetables makes an excellent side to a main course, and is light and tasty.
4 cups thinly sliced hearts of romaine
2 heads Belgian endive, cored and thinly sliced
1 bulb fennel, trimmed, cored, quartered and thinly sliced
425g canned hearts of palm, drained, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1/2 head radicchio, cored, quartered and thinly sliced
1 red apple, cored and cut into matchsticks
1 cup thinly sliced radishes
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 shallot, peeled and quartered
1/4 cup champagne vinegar, or white-wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Preparation for vinaigrette: combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.
Toss all ingredients except for vinaigrette in a large bowl. Add the vinaigrette and toss. Add pepper to taste.
Citrus Ginger Cake
This yummy dessert can be made one day in advance, which is handy for those busy holiday days.
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup mild-flavoured extra-virgin olive oil
2 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
2 tablespoons freshly grated orange or lemon zest
1/3 cup fresh orange or lemon juice
5 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger, divided
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar
Preheat oven to 177°C and oil a 20-cm round cake plan before lining it with oiled baking paper.
In a bowl, mix the honey, oil, egg yolks, zest, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons crystallized ginger together. In a separate bowl, sift the whole-wheat pastry flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt together. Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
Stir the honey mixture into the sifted flour mixture before folding the egg whites into the mixture. Bake the batter for around 35 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Allow to cool before sifting sugar over the top of the cake and garnish with the remaining ginger.
Prawns and Asparagus in Garlic Aioli
1.5kg (about 40) medium green prawns, peeled leaving tails intact and de-veined
5 bunches asparagus, woody ends trimmed
2 lemons, rind finely grated, juiced
1 tbs olive oil
Olive oil spray
Small basil leaves, to serve
170g (2/3 cup) 97 per cent fat-free mayonnaise
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbs chopped fresh basil
40 bamboo skewers
Soak 40 bamboo skewers in water for around 20 minutes. Mix the lemon rind, lemon juice and oil in a bowl and season with pepper. Coat prawns and asparagus with mixture and place in fridge for 1-4 hours to marinate.
In a bowl, mix the mayonnaise, lemon juice, garlic and basil. Season with pepper.
Drain the prawns and thread on to the skewers. Drain asparagus, and grill both on a chargrill or barbeque grill on high until the prawns are cooked and the asparagus is tender. Serve with basil aioli and basil leaves.
Salmon with Walnut and Chilli Salsa
80g pitted green olives
3/4 cup chopped fresh coriander
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
60g dry-roasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
1 long fresh green chilli, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tbs red wine vinegar
3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp caster sugar
1 (about 1.3kg) skin-on salmon fillet, pin boned
60ml (1/4 cup) fresh lemon juice
Lemon wedges, to serve
Cover olives with cold water and leave to soak for 20 minutes. Drain and halve the olives before returning them to the bowl. Add walnuts, coriander, basil, onion and chilli, and stir to mix well
Mix the vinegar, oil and sugar and add to the olive mixture. Toss and season with pepper to taste.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a baking pan or dish with non-stick baking paper. Place the salmon in the pan and drizzle with lemon juice and season with pepper. Cover with baking paper and bake for around 20 minutes or until cooked.
Serve on a serving platter with lemon wedges and olive mixture.