Mulled Wine Inspired Christmas Martini

‘Tis the season for Christmas parties & a little festive tipple!

Mulled-wine inspired Christmas Martini ● Christmas cocktail recipe ● Cake + Whisky

And in that field, things don’t get any better than a tangy Christmas Martini.

Mulled-wine inspired Christmas Martini ● Christmas cocktail recipe ● Cake + Whisky

I first tried them at the Borough Kitchen Christmas press do, and they immediately became a seasonal staple.

They are a modern take on traditional mulled wine and a real Christmas cracker of a drinks recipe!

Mulled-wine inspired Christmas Martini ● Christmas cocktail recipe ● Cake + Whisky

Super easy, quick and completely delicious, I have it on good authority that Mr & Mrs Claus enjoy a few of these on the run up to Christmas eve.

Just make sure you drink them responsibly… ‘elf & safety first, promise?!

Mulled-wine inspired Christmas Martini ● Christmas cocktail recipe ● Cake + Whisky

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Mulled Wine Inspired Christmas Martini

Healthy Chocolate Orange

I have a -fully disclosed- love affair with citrus fruit. Lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits, I love them all.

But my favourite, if I ever had to pick just one at gunpoint, would probably be blood oranges.

Healthy Chocolate Orange recipe (vegan, GF) | Cake + Whisky

I love how versatile they are (they work just as well in savoury dishes as they do in sweet ones and are wonderful both by themselves or paired with some more complex flavours). Plus they’re so pretty they make any plate look stunning.

The season for blood oranges is rather short though, so I make the most of them when they’re available. Which happens to be right about now.

Healthy Chocolate Orange recipe (vegan, GF) | Cake + Whisky

So when every food magazine is trying to push more Valentine-evocative strawberry/caramel/chocolate puds, I decided to use the season of love as another excuse to use blood oranges.

Inspired by Terry’s classic Chocolate Orange treat, this gorgeous blood orange salad is both healthy and sophisticated with a touch of nostalgia thrown in for good measure.

Healthy Chocolate Orange recipe (vegan, GF) | Cake + Whisky

It’s vegan and gluten-free (but you’d never guess it from tasting it!), and it’s much quicker and easier to make than it looks, so you don’t have to slave in the kitchen to impress your loved one. Basically the perfect Valentine’s Day dessert!

Healthy Chocolate Orange recipe (vegan, GF) | Cake + Whisky

Healthy chocolate orange (serves 2 – vegan, gluten free)
Ingredients:
  • 4 blood oranges
  • 50g good baking dark chocolate
  • 2 tbsp coconut cream
  • 1 tsp desiccated coconut
  • small sprinkle of sea salt flakes
Method:

(Steps 1, 2 & 3 can be made ahead of time, in which case you’ll want to keep the different elements in the fridge until serving time. Steps 4 & 5 however should be done right before serving)

1. Melt the chocolate over a double boiler. Take off the heat, then stir in the coconut cream and sea salt flakes. Put in the fridge to set for at least 2 hours.

2. Using a sharp knife (serated ones work best for this), cut away the peel and pith from the oranges, explosing the flesh. Slice the oranges as thin as you can, then arrange the slices onto two small plates.

3. Use a couple of hot teaspoons to form small quenelles of the chocolate truffle mixture.

4. Arrange the chocolate truffle quenelles on top of the orange slices.

5. In a dry pan, roast the desiccated coconut for a minute or so, until it turns slightly golden. Sprinkle on top of each plate and serve immediately.

Healthy Chocolate Orange

Christmas Orange Salad with Spiced Cranberries

Roasts with rivers of gravy, creamy cheese, followed by a big batch of cakes and puddings… Christmas food is nothing if not indulgent.

But it absolutely doesn’t have to be like that all the way. As for most things in life, it’s all about balance.

Christmas orange salad with spiced cranberries | Cake + WhiskyChristmas orange salad with spiced cranberries | Cake + Whisky

A crunchy brussel sprout slaw with the turkey. Plenty of fresh and dried fruit on your cheese board. And a tiny slice of pudding with this little wonder of a Christmas orange salad on the side.

Christmas orange salad with spiced cranberries | Cake + Whisky Christmas orange salad with spiced cranberries | Cake + Whisky

Bursting with festive flavours, yet still zesty and fresh, it’s the perfect way to end your Christmas meal…

So squeeze your chance & make this Christmas meal your zestier yet!

Christmas orange salad with spiced cranberries

Christmas Orange Salad with Spiced Cranberries (serves 4)

Ingredients:

  • 6 oranges or 8 tangerines
  • 1 big handful fresh cranberries
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 green cardamom pods or 1 black cardamom pod, slightly crushed
  • 1 small handful raisins
  • 5 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 300ml water

1. In a small saucepan, place the cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, raisins and water. Bring to a small boil and simmer for 10 min. Add the sugar, reduce the heat and cook until it start thickening.

2. Add the cranberries into the syrup and cook until they just start to rumple. Remove from the heat and let it cool completely.

3. Using a knife, cut off the peel and white pith from the oranges. Cut them in thin slices and arrange on a serving dish.

4. Top with the spiced cranberries and raisins and drizzle with a bit of the spiced cooking syrup. Serve immediately.

Christmas Orange Salad with Spiced Cranberries

Orange and Cardamom Galette des Rois

Eating super healthy might make sense after the whole Christmas over-eating. That’s what sensible people would do.

But the French think otherwise. On the other side of the Channel, January is the season for Galettes des Rois (Kings cake).

Orange & Cardamom Galette des Rois | Cake + Whisky

Traditonally eaten for Epiphany on January 6th, Galette des Rois is an indulgent puff pastry and almond cream pie (frangipane).

It contains a porcelain figurine, and the person who receives it becomes King or Queen.

But with great powers (and any paper crown) comes great responsabilities and the newly crowned monarch will have to offer his/her people a drink or host the next king cake party, hence the whole shebang lasting well onto January… (but then it means more cake, so why would I complain?)

Orange & Cardamom Galette des Rois | Cake + Whisky

Orange & Cardamom Galette des Rois (serves 6-8)

Ingredients: 1 block of all-butter puff pastry, 60g butter, 125g ground almonds, 125g caster sugar, 3 eggs, zest of an orange, 4 cardamom pods (shell removed and crushed into a fine powder), 1 egg yolk

1. Heat the oven to 200C/fanC180

2. Divide the puff pastry in half, roll out each piece and cut into a 25cm round. Put one round on a baking sheet.

3. Beat together the softened butter and caster sugar. Stir in the ground almonds, orange zest and crushed cardamom seeds, then beat in the 3 eggs.

4. Spoon the mixture over the pastry, spreading it evenly. Brush the edges of the pastry with water, then cover with the second piece, pressing the edges to seal.

5. Mark the top of the pastry from the centre to the edges like the spokes of a wheel, then brush with the beaten egg yolk.

6. Bake for 25-30 mins until crisp and golden.

Orange and Cardamom Galette des Rois