Christmas is about family, holidays – and of course, food! We spoke to two of Melbourne’s best restaurateurs about their favourite family Christmas recipes to provide some inspiration for your big Chrissie lunch.
Ricky Tobin, Meatmarket
“My favourite family Christmas recipe is a traditional Christmas pudding. I’m from Ireland, and winter Christmas’ were what I grew up with. Every year when Christmas comes around in Australia, I make sure there’s a traditional brandy soaked pudding with brandy butter to bring back memories.”
Recipe for Traditional Christmas Pudding from Ricky Tobin, Venue Manager at Meatmarket:
- 1 x 375g pkt raisins, coarsely chopped
- 1 x 300g pkt currants
- 150g sultanas
- 1 x 170g pkt craisins (dried cranberries)
- 250ml (1 cup) rum
- Melted butter, to grease
- 250g butter, at room temperature
- 200g (1 cup) firmly-packed brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 175g (2 1/2 cups) fresh breadcrumbs
- 75g (1/2 cup) self-raising flour
- 75g (1/2 cup) plain flour
- 1 teaspoon mixed spice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Warmed custard, to serve
- Combine raisins, currants, sultanas, craisins and rum in a bowl. Set aside for 6 hours to macerate.
- Brush a 2L (8-cup) capacity pudding basin with melted butter to grease. Line the base with non-stick baking paper.
- Use an electric beater to beat the butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition (mixture may appear curdled). Stir in breadcrumbs, combined flours, mixed spice and cinnamon. Add the raisin mixture and stir until combined. Spoon into basin.
- Place an upturned heatproof saucer in the base of a saucepan. Fill one-third of the saucepan with boiling water and bring to a simmer over low heat.
- Cut a 30cm-square piece of non-stick baking paper and a 30cm-square piece of foil. Place paper on foil and fold to make a pleat in the centre. Place over basin, foil-side up. Tie a double piece of kitchen string around basin to secure. To make a handle, tie a double piece of string loosely over the top of the basin.
- Lower the basin onto the saucer in saucepan. Add enough boiling water to reach two-thirds of the way up the basin. Simmer, covered, over low heat, adding boiling water when necessary, for four hours or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the pudding comes out clean.
- Remove basin from pan. Set aside for five minutes. Pour over custard to serve.
Chanyut Nitmaha, BangPop
“As Thai people do not celebrate Christmas, this will be more of a family holiday favourite. Here is our favourite family dish of steamed barramundi.” This meal is served over the festive season (New Year) in Charlie’s family, as it is always made during the holidays when the whole family is together.Recipe for Steamed Barramundi with Chilli Lime Dressing from Chanyut Nitmaha (Charlie), Head Chef at BangPop:
- 1 whole barramundi
- 3 sliced garlic cloves
- 10 chopped chillies
- 1 teaspoon castor sugar
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- Place whole barramundi on a hot plate.
- Place all ingredients over the barramundi and place in a steamer.
- Cook for 20min.
- Add coriander as garnish and serve.