Chilled-Out Party Planning | Free delivery in time for Christmas

Part planning with Dairy Diary

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Chilled-Out Party Planning

My other half will tell you that I’m a bit (or a lot!) of a perfectionist. That comes in pretty handy as a Managing Editor but is not quite so helpful at home.

This Christmas, however, I aim
to be a vision of calm and
tranquillity, even if everything
is going pear-shaped!

We are hosting a couple of parties, but instead of running around trying to cook 500 different foods whilst entertaining and topping up drinks. I am going to plan it so that everything can be made in advance and I can actually socialise and enjoy myself.

The easiest option is a buffet – no pressure to keep everything hot and no washing up! I have asked everyone to bring along a plate of goodies – anything goes – and I am going to make some mulled wine, a few nibbles and a couple of dishes that can be prepared in advance. I’ve also ordered some gorgeous festive disposable plates and napkins online so everything will still look pretty!

Here’s my selection from Dairy Diary. They might come in handy for your Christmas do too.

Mulled Wine

Mulled Wine

Serves 12
Time 5 mins, plus infusing time
Calories 131 per glass
Fat 0g of which 0g is saturated
Suitable for vegetarians

Whole cloves 4
Oranges 2, cut into wedges
Lemon 1, cut into wedges
Red wine 2 x 75cl bottles
Orange juice 600ml (1 pint)
Water 900ml (1½ pints)
Clear honey 4 tbsp or to taste
Ground ginger 2 tsp
Cinnamon stick 5cm (2in) piece, plus extra sticks to serve, optional

1 Press 1 clove into 4 of the orange and lemon wedges.

2 Place all ingredients in a large pan and bring to a simmer, not a rapid boil. Leave to infuse at the lowest heat for 30 minutes.

3 Reheat as and when ready to serve. 4 Ladle into heatproof glasses or mugs and add a piece of cinnamon stick to each as a stirrer, if using.

Cook’s tip To make a non-alcoholic version, use cranberry juice in place of the wine.

A Dairy Diary recipe

Forestier PâtéForestier Pâté

Serves 6
Time 20 mins, plus chilling time
Calories 332 per portion
Fat 27g of which 16g is saturated

Butter 150g (5oz)
Onion 1 small, peeled and finely chopped
Garlic 1 clove, peeled and crushed
Chicken livers 450g (1lb), trimmed and chopped
Mushrooms 150g (5oz), chopped
Bay leaves 2, plus extra to garnish
Dried thyme ½ tsp, plus extra to garnish
Brandy 2 tbsp
Double cream 75ml (2½fl oz)
French bread and salad leaves to serve

1 Melt 25g (1oz) butter and gently fry onion and garlic. Add livers, mushrooms, bay leaves and thyme and season. Cover and simmer gently for about 10 minutes or until livers are tender. Remove bay leaves, then add brandy.

2 Cool slightly, transfer to a blender and whizz until smooth. Stir in cream and check seasoning.

3 Melt rest of butter and scoop off white sediment. Pour pâté into a large serving dish or 6 small pots. Pour over butter, add extra bay leaves and thyme and chill for 2–3 hours. Serve with slices of French bread toast and salad leaves.

A Dairy Diary recipe

Raspberry Trifle

Raspberry Trifle recipe

Serves 8
Time 20 mins
Calories 339 per portion
Fat 24g of which
13.4g is saturated
Suitable for vegetarians

Trifle sponges 4
Raspberry jam 2 tbsp
Sherry 4 tbsp
Amaretti biscuits 25g (1oz), crumbled
Raspberries 150g (5oz), plus extra to decorate
Double cream 300ml (½ pint)
Custard 425g can
Amaretto liqueur 2 tbsp, optional

1 Halve trifle sponges and sandwich together with jam. Cut into quarters and arrange in a trifle dish.

2 Pour sherry over sponges and sprinkle with amaretti. Reserving a few raspberries for decoration, place remainder in dish.

3 Stir 3 tbsp cream into custard, then pour over fruit, cover and chill.

4 Whip remaining cream with liqueur, if using, until soft peaks form. Spread over custard and decorate with reserved raspberries.

A Dairy Diary recipe

Parmesan Crisp Canapes

Parmesan Crisp Canapes

Click here to view the recipe on the Dairy Diary website.

There is a great choice of sample recipes from Dairy Diary 2014 and Clever One Pot cookbook. Plus we have a huge selection for every occasion in the Recipe Library.

Where would I be without the Dairy Diary for all these ideas?

I’ll let you into a little secret…..
postage is free for the next week*.

So get your orders in for friends and family now – guaranteed delivery delivery before Christmas. You can buy the Dairy Diary Set for just an extra couple of pounds and get a pocket diary, notes organiser and a pen too. Bargaintastic and a beautiful gift!

Free delivery on everything at Dairy Diary!

* Free delivery on all UK orders placed before 18 December 2013.

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