Each year when the calendar page shows December, my girlfriends would arm themselves with a battery of vigorous workout sessions and insane diet regimens.
Nope, they’re not having a mass wedding or renewing their vows together. This is but a preparation all of them go through in the name of enjoying their Christmas parties while keeping the guilt trip to blubber-land at bay.
With so many high-calorie sinful temptations during the festive celebrations, it’s only right that one should fear the battle of the bulge afterward. Zenxin Agri-Organic has concocted several solutions for great tasting reduced-calorie dishes for that purpose.
I used to be a staunch believer that anything healthy can’t taste half as good as the real thing.. After securing a date with Mrs Ceridwen Wolf, Zenxin Agri-Organic’s Product Manager, I went down to the hypermart certain that Mrs Wolf wouldn’t succeed in budging my judgement, much less my taste buds.
But I was so wrong.
Upon reaching my destination I found myself shoved aside, between a Christmas tree and the demonstration table, by an army of “aunties” determined to learn how to make healthy yummy dishes.
Mrs Wolf whipping up some Christmas cheer.
Undeterred, I watched as the amiable Mrs Wolf quickly whipped up a batch of Delish Christmas Eggs, and at the same time, good-naturedly fielded the fast, strong queries the spectators threw at her.
“Whatever your grandmother ate would be the best thing for you to eat,” Mrs Wolf announced as she offered the plate of delish eggs all around. These were, in my opinion, named aptly as they were quite scrumptious.
The mix of tangy, sweet and tasty herbs was balanced out perfectly and will do great as starters or finger food.
Zesty Cranberry Sauce
Next up, she put together a saucer of Zesty Cranberry Sauce to go with turkey, and boy did it smell like Christmas. Not only was the sauce tasty with a nice tart, sweet finish, but it was also a visual treat. Its natural ruby red colouring is sure to bring out the Christmas spirits and smells when drizzled over desserts or turkey.
But the one thing that sold me was the Sweet Potato Pie. One bite into the sweet potato and the whole floor went silent. The filling was smooth, sweet and absolutely decadent, with the right touch of spices. I was pretty sure this is one dessert I’ll be lugging to many potluck parties over the Christmas and New Year’s period. The best thing about all of them is, they’re dead easy to prepare!
Sweet Potato Pie
Fret not if you are hankering after the recipes! It’s here for all to see!
6 organic eggs
1 pkt fresh organic chives
1 pkt fresh organic Italian parsley
1 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tsp gourmet mustard
Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper
1. Bring cold water and room temperature eggs to the boil gently and simmer for around 5 minutes. Any longer and your yolks will turn pale and lose their vibrant yellow.
2. Plunge the eggs into ice-cold water to cool them off. This will contract the eggs from the shells and allow them to be peeled without getting craters in their skin.
3. Peel the eggs carefully and halve them.
4. Remove the yolks again with care and mash with the other ingredients. Take a teaspoon and replace the mixture into the white half eggs and serve on a bed of lettuce.
2 cups washed fresh organic cranberries
1 stick of cinnamon
Juice of 1 orange
6-8 thinly pared strips or orange peel or organic orange zest
1⁄2 cup organic brown sugar
1⁄2 cup of water
1. Dissolve the brown sugar in the water by heating it in a saucepan.
2. Add the spices and orange zest and let this simmer for 3 mins until the room smells like Christmas, then add the cranberries and orange juice.
3. Simmer gently until thickened to desired consistency. Be very careful as the cranberries will pop and fly out of the pan unless you keep the lid on.
2 cups Zenxin organic baked sweet potato
1⁄2 cup butter
1⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon
1⁄4 tsp ground nutmeg
1⁄4 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp pure vanilla essence
1⁄2 cup organic brown sugar
2 organic eggs
1⁄2 cup organic cream
1 tbsp organic self-raising flour
1⁄2 cup organic walnut pieces
230g instant shortcut pastry
9 inch flan pie tin
2 tbsp butter
1⁄4 cup organic brown sugar
1⁄2 cup walnut pieces
A pinch of salt
1. Bake 4 medium sized sweet potatoes in the oven at 180°C for approximately 70 mins. Leave to cool and then peel off the skin. The longer you bake this, the sweeter the filling will be as the sweet potato will caramelise.
2. Butter the flan tin and cover with the pastry.
3. Measure out 2 cups of sweet potato and add the butter, spices and vanilla and mix well.
4. Stir in the 2 eggs, brown sugar, organic cream, flour and finally the walnut pieces.
5. Place mixture in flan dish and place this in the oven to bake for approximately 55 minutes. If you stick a knife into the pie and it comes out clean, it’s done.
6. While the pie is baking, prepare the topping.
7. Dissolve the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan using low heat. Wait until the mixture is bubbling then add the walnuts and a pinch of salt.
8. Stir for another 2 minutes then remove from the heat and pour onto a marble slab to cool or leave it aside in the pan to cool. Crumble and sprinkle over the pie to finish.
You can find more recipes by Mrs Wolf here.
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