4 Ingredients Christmas
I love Christmas and everything about it. Festive fare, family and friends, and a little time out from the business of life. Yet as we all know, it can also be an overwhelming amount of work! Clever entertaining to me is creating the illusion that I have been slaving away diligently in the kitchen, meticulously planning the menu, setting the table, choosing a theme, color, flowers, and prepping as much as I can so that when the time arrives, I too can actually enjoy myself.
As with all of my books in the 4 Ingredients series, 4 Ingredients Christmas is all about making cooking and entertaining at home fast and fabulous. I truly believe that as long as you have fresh ingredients, four are really all you need to come up with something delicious and impressive. (Special note: Salt, pepper, and water are not included in the four ingredients.) In this book, you’ll find recipes perfect for Christmas Eve treats, holiday brunches, and formal family dinners. Your table will be full of amazing-looking dishes that will appear much more complicated, time-consuming, and expensive than they actually are.
Where I live in Caloundra, along Australia’s gorgeous Sunshine Coast, December 25 is in the middle of our summer. Christmas to me means outdoor parties, grilled fish, fresh cherries and watermelon, ice cream, and ice-cold cocktails. It means decorating with pink petunias and bright orange nasturtiums in addition to a festive Christmas tree and hints of red and green throughout the house. The holiday wouldn’t feel complete without traditional dishes like Citrus-Glazed Ham, Maple & Pepper–Glazed Turkey, Seasoned Roast Vegetables, Plum Pudding, and Christmas cake (your fruitcake), which is why I’ve included glorious recipes for those in this book. But I also wanted American cooks to consider a Southern Hemisphere twist to the holiday with Watermelon & Feta Bites (you can replace the watermelon with pears, dates, or whatever lovely fruit is in season where you are), Ruby Jeweled Lobster Salad, and Caramel Ice Cream. Many of the desserts and sweet treats you’ll find here don’t require baking. For me, it’s a way of keeping my kitchen calm and cool for the many friends and family passing through it. For those of you at home in a winter wonderland, these dishes will help save time and oven space. By way of the beautiful photographs taken by Megan Slade, 4 Ingredients Christmas represents what my table looks like on Christmas Day and the day after . . . and the day after that . . .
The fact is, 4 Ingredients Christmas isn’t just a Christmas cookbook. My husband requests the Wild Mushroom Beef Wellington every year for his February birthday. My dad’s July birthday wouldn’t be the same without his beloved Chicken & Port Pâté. My sister-in-law, Nelly, asks for the Heavenly Halloumi Skewers every time she visits (which is a lot—“Hi, Nelly!”). Sunday
dinner is so much better with Roast Pork & Crispy Crackling, and the Lime & Macadamia Fudge makes a simple, elegant thank-you gift any day of the year.
It is my hope that 4 Ingredients Christmas will become your go-to cookbook for any occasion, be it Christmas, Thanksgiving, Mother’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries, or special dinner parties with family and friends.
Stress no more, my lovelies!
Take a deep breath, pour a glass of wine,
and start to plan your menu from the simply yummy recipes within.