This Monday we had another Birthday party for Will this time with a few friends across the Street at the Water Prince, we had Malpeque Oysters, Lobster and Halibut one of my favourite fish. Will had coconut cream pie made on the premises, it is so good. A friend who is a baritone and actor came in to sing Happy Birthday to the boy who was surprised. It was a fun afternoon.
Well we are getting ready for the Holidays, Will has been cooking up a storm, muffins, cookies, Christmas Puddings 2 big and 2 small, a very rich recipe with lots of Brandy. He also made bread (no machine) by hand, mince meat pies (45) small ones. Today it was Tourtière or French Canadian Meat pie, something English Canadians find exotic and cannot make on their own, one of those strange Canadian Factoids. The Tourtière is no longer made with the Tourte Bird which is extinct since 1914. It is a mixture of veal, pork and beef, very nice and the smell in the kitchen screams Christmas Season. This meat pie should not be confused with the Acadian Meat pie which is a very different recipe and preparation, made of shredded beef and mash potatoes. The Acadians live in the Maritimes in Canada and are a distinct French speaking group from other French Canadians in Canada. We already have a year old Fruit Cake soaking in Brandy which is a traditional gift from our Friend John in Ottawa. Every year for the last 38 years no matter where we might be in the World, he makes one for us and sends it to us. It is truly a marvel unlike any other Fruit cake I know of.
Our one and only Pointsettia which is a mixture of pink, red and yellow, it stands 2 feet across.
We are going to make Amuse gueule for our Xmas Eve Party, note that I use the old French culinary expression Amuse gueule and NOT Amuse bouche which is so common today amongst the prissy class. The word gueule is an old French word and refers to the mouth of the lion or wolf, meaning that the food in small bites is so good you devour it. The new expression means nothing to me and is frankly silly, a bit like saying; Oh I will have one but should not because I’m on a diet. Well then honey let me show you the door.
I am looking for a good Stilton Cheese and I may have found one today. No Stilton is not like other blue cheese. Stilton is an English cheese, produced in two varieties: Blue, which has had Penicillium roqueforti added to generate a characteristic smell and taste and White. I want the Blue. Which I will put into a light pastry and served hot. Will also wants to make other little bouchées for our guests. We will also have sweets like the mince meat mini tarts. We make all of this from scratch which means that I go out with long lists of ingredients.
Cheese star crackers made with very old Cheddar for that extra sharp taste, you cannot eat only one.
Mince Meat tarts, first make the mince meat and store in jars and then the pastry and assemble. Again very nice to have with a drink or coffee.
Today I also went to the dentist for a cleaning and well I was told I have beautiful teeth, again the Colgate poster kid, what can I say… Afterwards came home and polished the famous 30 Sterling Silver Christmas balls and the 10 Towle Sterling Silver Floral Ornaments, so tomorrow we can decorate the tree. We have Delft ornaments this year to add after our trip to The Netherlands. Photos coming.
Sterling Silver ornaments all hand polished each year. Neiman Marcus has them each year.
We have our menu planned for Lunch on Christmas day, we will be 6 people. As for New Year’s Eve I really don’t know at this time, I prefer to either stay at home or maybe we will go to the Club for a drink. Then for January 1, 2020, Levée Day in PEI, I am wondering if I will go either to volunteer at Government House or to the Club. Not sure what to do. In either case you greet hundreds of people in 2 hours, a little exhausting.
So it is all coming together. Not to forget there is also Hanukkah on 22 December, in fact every year at Christmas lunch we give our guests some chocolate geld which come in the form of Canadian $1 and $2 dollar coins.