Joulupöytään - Christmas Table

This is more a post to share pictures of what we had on our Christmas table than a recipe share. 

Clockwise: Lanttulaatikko, Porkkanalaatikko, Mulled Lamb, Joulu Kinkku
Clockwise: Kuorrutettu kukkakaali, Pear tart & Lemon Tart, Scrambled Eggs with Salmon with Hollandaise Sauce,  Joulupuuro


Tuna and Mixed Nuts Salad

Salads are perfect for Summer days. They're quick and easy to put together, leaving you lots more time to enjoy the longer days.

This tuna salad is an adaptation from one that I'd tasted a while back. A friend had made it as a quick dinner before we headed out for a property viewing near Sydenham Hill in South East London. It is light, refreshing, yet filled with lots of protein to last you longer.

  • 100g bag of Italian Style Salad leaves (or salad leaves of your choice)
  • 2 slices of Tuna Steaks (approx. 200g)
  • Handful of Pistachio Nuts (shelled, roughly chopped / crushed)
  • Handful of Brazil Nuts (roughly chopped / crushed)
  • Handful of Cashew Nuts (roughly chopped / crushed)
  • Handful of Mixed Seeds (Sunflower, Pumpkin, Linseed, Sesame Seeds)
  • Handful of Mixed Dried Fruits (Raisins, Sultanas, Cranberries)
  • 4 tsp Capers
  • 2-3 swigs Olive Oil
  • Rub tuna steaks with sea salt, wash off with water, then pat dry with kitchen towel. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
  • Heat up frying pan with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, then fry tuna steaks (to your individual preference).
  • Whilst the tuna is in the pan, empty bag of salad leaves into mixing bowl.
  • Crush or roughly chop up all the nuts - I find a pestel and mortar very handy for this job.
  • When tuna is ready, chop them up into cubes of approx. 2cm x 2cm. Add chopped tuna chunks into mixing bowl.
  • Sprinkle crushed nuts, mixed seeds, mixed fruits, and capers over the top.
  • Drizzle olive oil over the salad mix, stir well to evenly coat.
  • Season to personal taste and serve with your choice of bread.


Kerabu Beehoon (Kerabu Vermicelli Noodles)

This is a Nyonya style noodle - spicy, tangy, refreshing, and appetising!

Preparation does take a while, however when all ingredients are assembled the mixing is easy peasy job. Served cold it's perfect for a Summer picnic, or a big party. If you prefer a warm meal, you can heat it up in the microwave too.

This dish always reminds me of the lazy weekend picnics we had as kids along Batu Ferringhi stretch of beach in Penang. Nothing beats a refreshing light noodle to fill your tummy after a dip in the sea!

Recipe below has been adapted as living abroad presents a challenge in finding authentic ingredients. For those who love food, this shouldn't stop us from making good food. We make do with what we can get our hands on.


  • 400g Vermicelli Noodles
  • 400g Beansprouts
  • 250-300g King Prawns
  • 30-40g Dried Shrimps
  • 30g Fresh Mint
  • 30g Flat Leaf Parsley
  • 15-20 Bulb Shallots
  • 50g Desicated Coconut
    Mixing Sauce:
  • 3-4 Lime / 1.5 Lemon Juice
  • 4 tbsp Tom Yum Paste
  • 4 tbsp Bottled Sambal Belachen (Fresh Belachan if available)
  • 2-3 tsp Fish Sauce (add more to suit personal taste)
  • 1-2 tsp Sugar to taste
  • Blanche noodles in boiling water, turn off heat and cover with lid for 4-5mins. Drain under tap water to prevent noodles from breaking. Set aside for later.
  • Wash beansprouts, blanche and set aside for later.
  • Cook king prawns in boiling water. Let cool, then halve or sliced thinly and set aside.
  • Soak dried shrimps in hot water, drain and roughly pound into pulp.
  • Thinly slice fresh mint, and flat leaf parsley.
  • Peel shallots and finely slice.
  • Lightly fry (without oil) desicated coconut in a shallow pan

  • In a mixing bowl, add all mixing sauce ingredients, stir well and set aside.
  • When all ingredients are gathered, in a large bowl or container mix thoroughly all the ingredients except desicated coconut and mint leaves for just before serving.
    NOTE:Above recipe yields approximately 12-14 portions depending on how hungry the crowd you are feeding feels.

    For a more authentic taste, source for below ingredients to replace the substitutes above:
  • Asian Lime
  • Asian Mint Leaves
  • Fresh Shredded Coconut
  • Freshly Pounded Sambal Belachan (alternatively use a blender)


Honey Butter

  • 1 cup Salted butter
  • 2/3 cup Honey
  • 1/2 cup Icing/powdered sugar
  1. Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk in an electric mixer for a few minutes until the honey butter turns fluffy and the colour turns from golden to a light cream shade.
  3. Serve at room temperature. Goes well with any freshly-baked bread, cornbread or pancakes.


    Eggs Benedict with Smoked Salmon

    (Serves 4)
    • 8 eggs    
    • 8 pieces Smoked salmon
    • 16 stalks Asparagus (optional)
    • 4 English muffins (split)
    • 50g butter
    • 2 tsp vinegar
    Hollandaise sauce
    • 200g unsalted butter
    • 3 egg yolks
    • 1 tbsp lemon juice
    • 2 tbsp hot water
    • Pinch of Ground black pepper
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    1. To make the hollandaise sauce, whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a bowl.
    2. Place the bowl over a metal rack in a saucepan with simmering water.
    3. Continue to whisk rapidly. Then pour in melted butter and continue whisking until sauce is thickened.
    4. Add salt and black pepper and mix well. Remove from heat and set aside for use later.
    5. To poach the eggs, bring water in a saucepan to almost boiling. If water is boiling, lower the heat until it is no longer boiling. 
    6. Add 2 teaspoons of vinegar to the water.
    7. Break an egg into a cup.  Swirl the vinegared water briskly to form a vortex and slide an egg in. Let the egg curl round and set to a neat round shape. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then remove with a slotted spoon. 
    8. Immerse the egg into ice-cold water to stop the egg from cooking further.
    9. Repeat with the other eggs, one at a time, re-swirling the water as you slide the eggs in. 
    10. Split the muffins and toast them lightly. Spread butter on muffins.
    11. Place a slice of smoked salmon and 2 stalks of asparagus on each muffin and top with a poached egg. 
    12. Pour hollandaise sauce on top and serve.


    Slow-cooked Old-Style Mustard Chicken

    • 2 tbsp Olive oil
    • 1.5kg Chicken (chopped into chunky pieces)
    • 2 large Onions (cut into wedges)
    • 3 Carrots (cut into chunky pieces)
    • 5 cloves Garlic (minced)
    • 20g Fresh tarragon
    • 3 cups White wine
    • 3 cups Chicken stock
    • 4 tbsp Old-style mustard (the type with mustard seeds in it)
    • 5 tbsp Creme fraiche
    • 1 tbsp Corn flour (mixed with 6 tbsp water)
    • 3 tbsp Caster sugar
    • Salt & pepper to taste
    • Lemon (cut into wedges for garnishing)
    1. Marinate chicken in white wine, caster sugar, salt and pepper for about an hour.
    2. Heat pot with olive oil. Add garlic and fry till slightly brown.
    3. Add onions and fry till brown, then add carrots and continue frying.
    4. Add chicken and fry for 3 minutes, then add white wine and fry for 5 minutes. 
    5. Add chicken stock, old-style mustard, tarragon and turn chicken several times until chicken is cooked.
    6. Add caster sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
    7. Transfer everything into a slow cooker and cook for 5 hours on high heat.
    8. Drain and remove chicken and the vegetables from slow cooker and arrange on  a large serving dish.
    9. Transfer the remaining stock from the slow cooker to a pan.
    10. Add creme fraiche and stir well, then add cornflour and stir until stock thickens. Pour thickened stock onto the chicken and vegetables on serving dish.
    11. Garnish with lemon wedges and a few sprigs of tarragon.


    Beet Cake