Pumpkin Pie

For the past few weeks we have been at home visiting my family in Victoria for Christmas. My hubby is still getting used to the idea of Christmas in the searing heat, without snow, surrounded by gum trees instead of evergreens, eating cold meals instead of hot ones, going outside of a game of backyard cricket instead of being rugged up to go and toboggan down a hill…

So in order to make his transition to these strange warm Christmas’ I wanted to make some of this festive season feel like home for him.

My family was gathering together on Boxing Day to celebrate as a whole, so for Christmas Day lunch we had a HOT meal – turkey, mashed potatoes, bread and pumpkin pie for dessert! Needless to say, the meal made it feel more like Christmas for him.

This pumpkin pie recipe has been acclaimed as ‘One of the greatest pumpkin pies’ by some Canadian friends (and Aussies ones too!). It truly has a great home baked taste. For my Aussie friends who want to give pumpkin pie a try – this is where you need to start, because the recipes that I have seen in my Mum’s recipe books… well, they just don’t come close to capturing the flavour!

Pumpkin Pie

1/4 Kent pumpkin
2 eggs
1 cup ricotta cheese
3/4 cup cream
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger

Pie Crust:
190g plain flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup oil
2 tablespoon milk
pinch salt

Cut and peel pumpkin into large chunks and roast in moderate oven for 40 min or until pumpkin skin is starting to brown.
Combine all pie crust ingredients into pie dish and mix together. Once combined, press crust into pie dish and pierce crust with fork. Bake for 15 mins at 190°C. Remove once baked.
Puree pumpkin chunks, you should have about 2 cups of puree. Beat eggs until fluffy, then add remaining ingredients. Blend together until mixture is smooth. Pour into pie crust and bake for 15 mins at 220°C then lower to 180°C for another 40-50 mins. 



Christmas Pudding

With only 10 days until Christmas, I just had to share my favourite Christmas Recipe.

It’s hard for me to find a year where I haven’t enjoyed this Christmas classic. And I cannot wait to gobble this up again when we go home for Christmas.

May you have a wonderful Christmas season and enjoy the fellowship with your family and friends.

Christmas Pudding

450g raisins
450g currants
450g sultanas
250g peel
250g almonds, sliced
250g glace cherries
1 ½ cups sherry
450g flour
450g butter
450g brown sugar
1 teaspoon nutmeg
3 teaspoons mixed spice
300g breadcrumbs
5 eggs
2 tablespoons golden syrup
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon bi-carb soda

55g butter
55g flour
¾ cup milk
55g sugar
2 tablespoons rum

Combine all the dried fruit, peel, almonds and cherries in a bowl. Soak in sherry overnight – stir occasionally to increase absorption. Mix butter and flour together, add sugar, spice and breadcrumbs. Once mixed well, add eggs, syrup, milk and bi-carb soda. Lastly add fruit and mix well. Place mixture into greased pudding steamers. Boil in saucepan for 3-4 hours for a large pudding or 2-3 hours for a small pudding – be sure to check on water levels. If you do not have a pudding steamer, place mixture in a greased round ceramic bowl. Cover top with tin foil and use cooking string/elastic bands to seal so that the water doesn’t get in bowl.

Serve with custard and ice cream, or my new favourite – a wonderful white rum sauce. Melt butter in saucepan, add flour to make a thick paste. Lower the heat and cook for 1 minute (be careful not to burn). Using a whisk, slowly add the milk until the paste becomes a sauce (this will take about 5 minutes). Add the sugar and whisk until dissolved. Cook for 2 more minutes. Add the Rum just before serving.


Toblerone Cheesecake

I’m a chocolate lover… I can’t deny it! And this is an old faithful of mine.

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like Toblerone! Oh, so good!

And cheesecake, that delicious creamy smooth texture and amazing taste!

Combine these two things… and you will find yourself in cheesecake heaven!

Toblerone Cheesecake

1 cup Chocolate Biscuits
½ cup Butter
500g Cream Cheese
½ cup Sugar
200g Toblerone Chocolate
½ cup Thickened Cream

Crush the biscuits until it resembles breadcrumbs. Combine with melted butter and press into lightly greased spring form pan. Beat cream cheese with electric mixer for 2 minutes or until smooth. Add sugar, melted Toblerone chocolate and cream. Mix until well combined then pour into prepared crumb base and refrigerate for 2-3 hours until set. Serve with shaved Toblerone.