November almost always breezes by faster than any month of the year, with Christmas just around the corner. So we've rounded up some chefs this early to come up with a weekly series of easy-to-follow recipes, featuring unique and festive dishes for Noche Buena.
To demonstrate how Australians celebrate their sunny Christmas through desserts, Chef Kooch Laxamana of the Wicked Kitchen prepared an interesting meal-ender recipe fit to brighten any Noche Buena table.
What You Need:
1 pack Gelatin (any flavor)
250 grams Lady fingers, sponge cake or jelly roll
½ cup Cointreau / Grand Marnier (optional)
1 cup fruit cocktail mix or fresh fruits
2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 pcs egg yolks
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/3 cup white sugar
fresh fruits for topping
1. Arrange cake slices or lady fingers in a bowl. Sprinkle with Grand Marnier or Cointreau.
2. Make gelatin according to directions on packet. Add mixture to the bowl of cake slices and refrigerate 'til set.
3. In a saucepan, heat milk and vanilla extract over medium heat. Cook, while stirring constantly, for 5 minutes or until hot (do not allow to boil). Remove saucepan from heat.
4. Whisk egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar in a heatproof bowl until well-combined. Pour hot milk mixture over egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Return to saucepan and cook over low heat until mixture boils and thickens. Cover surface with plastic wrap and cool.
5. When gelatin has set, layer fresh fruits or fruit mix over cake layer. Add vanilla custard. (You may add or repeat layers, depending on the size of your bowl)
6. On the last layer, spread whipped cream and top with more fruits.
You may want to try out other varations of this dessert, depending on the fruit or sweets of your choice. Chef Kooch suggests chocolate brownies spiked with Kahlua or Baileys, with chocolate pudding and chocolate chips; or you can use different fruits and come up with sponge cake with fresh mangoes and strawberry gelatin.
There you have it, a vibrant piece that will surely please all guests in your dinner table. For more unique Noche Buena ideas, watch out for next week's Christmas Specials.