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Embrace the Season Ahead with Warming Winter Recipes

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Embrace the Season Ahead with Warming Winter Recipes


Happy first day of winter, fellow foodies! Winter is one of our favourite times of the year and not just because of the holidays.

We love winter because it’s the season of hot drinks and steaming soups, sumptuous stews and rich desserts. It’s a time to indulge in delicacies (oysters, anyone?) and cozy comfort foods and stay warm with a good book.

Our go-to winter menu includes a delicate French soup, a modern twist on a classic Greek Christmas lunch, and a tea-infused chocolate dessert that will have you reaching for seconds.

Bon appétit!


STARTER: White Winter Soup (from New French Table)

two bowls of white soup with chestnet garnish

What you need:
2 tbsp butter
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celeriac, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks
570 ml milk
250 ml water
1 sage leaf
1 sprig of thyme
200 g peeled and cooked chestnuts
pinch of freshly grated or ground nutmeg
salt and freshly ground black pepper

How to make it:

1. Place one tablespoon of the butter in a large pan over a medium heat. Once melted, add the onion and cook, stirring continuously, until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the celeriac to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes, until it has just started to take on some colour. Add the milk and water to the pan, along with the sage leaf and thyme sprig. Bring to a gentle simmer and leave to cook, uncovered, for 25 minutes, until the celeriac is tender.

2. Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter in a small pan over a low heat. Once melted, add the chestnuts to the pan and stir to coat in the butter. Cook gently for 2–3 minutes, until the chestnuts are heated all the way through. Set aside and keep warm. 

3. Once the celeriac is tender, remove the herbs from the pan and discard. Transfer the soup to a blender (this may need to be done in batches) and blend until completely smooth. Season the soup to taste with salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg, then transfer to serving bowls. Serve the soup hot with the chestnuts alongside.

Serves 4.


MAIN: Savoy Cabbage Dolmades with Egg-Free Avgolemono (from Mazi: Modern Greek Food)

blue plate with lettuce wraps and light cream sauce on white marble counter

What you need:
1 very large Savoy cabbage with big leaves
500 g minced pork
250 g minced beef
150 g spring onions, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
30 g short-grain or Arborio rice
50 g dill, chopped
4 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling over the dolmades (or use melted butter)
salt and pepper

microherbs, to garnish

For the lemon sauce:
100 g butter
100 g plain flour
800 ml vegetable stock
100 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
pinch of salt

How to make it:

1. Separate the leaves of the Savoy cabbage, wash them well and then blanch them in salted boiling water until softened. Transfer them to a large bowl of ice-cold water to cool quickly, then remove, pat dry and set aside.

2. Put all the remaining main ingredients in a large bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands.

3. Use the coarsest cabbage leaves to line the base of a shallow flameproof casserole dish. Lay the remaining cabbage leaves out on a work surface with their bases nearest to you. Place about 1 tbsp of the minced meat mixture in the centre of each leaf. Fold the sides of each leaf over the filling, then tightly roll from the base of the leaf towards the top.

4. Place the filled and rolled cabbage leaves on top of the cabbage leaves in the casserole, sitting them next to each other in tightly packed rows. Pour in enough boiling water to cover the rolls, then drizzle with olive oil, or melted butter if you prefer. Place a large heatproof plate, upside down, on top of the rolled cabbage leaves so that they are held in place, cover with the lid and simmer for 25–30 minutes or until the cabbage leaves are soft and the mince is fully cooked. You may have to add a little more water if necessary.

5. For the lemon sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat, add the flour and cook, whisking with a balloon whisk, until a smooth paste (roux) forms. Gradually add the stock and cook until the mixture thickens slightly, whisking constantly. Add the lemon juice and salt, then remove the pan from the heat. Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve.

6. Pour the lemon sauce on a platter, then remove the cabbage dolmades from the casserole and place them on top. Garnish with microherbs and serve immediately.

Serves 4.



DESSERT: Bowls of Choco-Chai (from Tea: History, Terroirs, Varieties)

two white bowls with blue stripes filled with chocolate mousse on white counter

What you need:
1 cup light cream (10%) or whole milk
4 tbsp Camellia chai spice/tea mix
4 tbsp brown or granulated sugar
6 oz. semisweet chocolate
3 eggs

How to make it:

1. Mix the cream and chai in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Remove from the heat and let infuse for 15 minutes.

2. Chop the chocolate using a food processor or mixer.

3. Reheat the chai infusion and then strain through a fine sieve.

4. Restart the food processor, pour in the hot infusion and blend until chocolate is fully melted. Add the eggs one at a time and blend for 30 to 60 seconds, until the mixture is smooth.

5. Fill small tea bowls or glasses, about 1/3 cup, with the choco-chai.

6. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and then serve with a garnish of your choice (lightly whipped cream, cocoa powder, or sugar-coated fennel seeds).


Tea pairing: Chai Camellia, Darjeeling Second Flush, or Assam Banaspaty

Serves 6-8.



Get the books:

 New French Table

 Mazi: Modern Greek Food

 Tea: History, Terroirs, Varieties

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