Christmas Party Food

 

Mince Pies with Cashew Icing

Makes 10-12 pies

Crust

  • 2 cups cashews
  • 1 cup raw oat flour*
  • 1⁄4 cup agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • pinch salt
  1.  Grind all ingredients in a food processor until thoroughly mixed.
  2.  Press the mixture into a tart/muffin tray that has been wrapped in cling film (plastic wrap) and dehydrate on a mesh dehydrator tray for 2-3 hours.
  3.  Remove the crusts from the cases and dehydrate out of the case for a further 8+ hours, still on the mesh dehydrator sheet.

*Raw oat flour is made by milling raw oats in a coffee grinder or high-speed blender. If you don’t have raw oats available and you don’t mind using oats that have been steamed to preserve shelf life, then non- raw oats will also work.

 

Cashew Icing

  • 11⁄2 cups cashews
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1⁄4 cup agave
  • 1⁄2 cup water

Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until completely smooth.

 

Filling

  • 11⁄2 cups soft dates, stones and flowers removed
  • 1⁄2 cup orange juice
  • 2 apples, chopped small
  • 11⁄2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • 1 cup raisins, roughly chopped
  • pinch salt
  • pinch nutmeg
  1. Grind all ingredients except the apple and raisins until they form a paste.
  2. Add in the apple and raisins and process for a further 5-10 seconds until fully combined.
  3. Fill each of the cases with a little of the mixture then top with the cashew icing and a pinch of the nutmeg.

 

 

Chocolate Macaroons with Spiced Centres

Makes 10 macaroons

For the macaroons

  • 2 cups desiccated coconut
  • 1⁄2 cup pecans, ground in a food
  • processor
  • 1⁄2 cup cacao powder
  • 1⁄2 cup agave
  • 1⁄4 cup tahini
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • pinch salt

For the Spiced Centres

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1⁄2 cup orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • pinch salt
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons agave

Combine all macaroon ingredients in a bowl; mix thoroughly.
Blend the ingredients for the spiced cashew cream in a high-speed blender.

 

To assemble

  1. Line a small mould with some plastic wrap. In the picture  a mini- cheesecake pan is used, but a small cutter or metal ring will work perfectly.
  2. Fill halfway with the macaroon mixture.
  3. Push the mixture down into the mould with your fingers, so it takes on the shape of the base of the mould.
  4. Form an indentation in the macaroon mixture to make a “well”.
  5. Roughly make a lid for the macaroon, out of the mixture, and place on top.
  6. Use your fingers to seal it neatly.
  7. Lift up the edges of the plastic wrap and you should be able to remove the macaroon as a whole, complete with spicy centre.
  8. Top with more desiccated coconut and dehydrate for 8 hours at 105 degrees F.

 

 

Rolled Courgette ribbons with Sweet Beet Paté

Makes 30 rolls

Sweet beet paté

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1⁄4 cup beetroot juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon agave

Grind all ingredients in a food processor until thoroughly combined. Set aside.

 

To assemble

  • 3-4 courgettes (zucchini), cut into long, thin slices on a mandoline
  • Several handfuls of rocket (arugula)
  • Sprigs of dill
  • 1 red pepper, cut julienne style
  • 30-40 chives

1. Lay out a piece of the sliced courgette, pat it dry with some kitchen paper and spread a small amount of the paté along the length of it.

2. At the end of the courgette closest to you place a few leaves of rocket, a piece of the julienned red pepper and a sprig of dill, so they all stick out the same side.

3. Start to roll that end away from you to form a roll.

4.  Stand on its end and tie a single chive around to secure it. Trim the ends of the chive.

5. When you’ve had a go a doing one or two and you got the technique, you can do them in batches of 5, to speed up the process.

6. Serve immediately

 

Recipes by Russell James, published in the Winter 2008 issue of Get Fresh

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