Aimée: Christmas is a time where everyone can relax, spend quality time with each other and enjoy indulging a little but what exactly does Christmas mean to you Dine?
Undine: ‘Well, Christmas is my absolute favourite time of the year. For me Christmas is when colleagues take some time for a hot drink at a Christmas market after a long day at work and it means finding joy in little things like wearing a crazy Christmas jumper. Even the Christmas-scrooge’s get Christmas songs in their heads so there must be something special with this season!’
Aimée: Definitely! So what do you and your family normally eat for Christmas dinner?
Undine: ‘In my family we follow the German Christmas tradition so on the 24th we eat potato salad and sausages. It may sound a bit sad but I love it and really look forward to the meal each year! The food for the other two holidays normally change, we often have a roast turkey or duck with dumplings and red or green cabbage.’
Aimée: There's something very sweet about traditions at Christmas time, but speaking of food, what’s your opinion on letting yourself go a little at Christmas time and eating those things you might not normally let yourself?
Undine: ‘I think it’s important to enjoy the festive days with family and friends and that includes good food. Soul food is called that because its good for our soul after all! But I recommend to avoid overeating. My tip for everyone would be: Just eat the things you really love. Don’t feel forced to eat the cookies the neighbour bought from the supermarket. Save some calories for your really favourite Christmas yummies instead.’
Aimée: That's really great advice, so because you're such a foodie do you like to be in the kitchen at Christmas or will someone else be cooking this year?
Undine: ‘We all cook together actually. Each of us usually prepares something and then everyone comes together and enjoys the food. I’m normally responsible for the dessert which is usually something like a christmassy cake.’
Aimée: That sounds so yummy! So let's get to it, what recipes do you have for us today?
Undine: For today I prepared a New York Cheesecake with speculoos crust. I will make this one for my family this year as well! Then I also made a warm red cabbage salad with mini-dumplings and of course a potato salad with sausages.
Aimée: And so why, out of all the things you could have chosen, did you pick these?
Undine: ‘As a food blogger I’m always interested in experimenting with the macros. The New Year Cheesecake is a healthier, high protein version of a normal cheesecake. Instead of heavy cream cheese and sour cream I used cottage cheese and quark. Both are high in protein and that turns the cake into a little Christmas treat which is still high in Protein and low in fat.’
‘Moving onto the second dish: The potato salad is vegan and also are the sausages. People might not be aware but the traditional Berlin potato salad is vegan. It consists of simply just potatoes, gherkins, onions, an apple and some herbs and vinegar.’
‘And last but not least I also made the dumplings and a warm red cabbage-salad as I think Christmas food can be really heavy and I thought it would be nice to have a fresher version of the traditional red cabbage. There are also apples, walnuts, pomegranate and a nice dressing in it. Instead of bread you can have small dumplings with it which fits really nicely I think.’
- Crumble all cookies in a small bag with the help of a glass or anything else. Mix well with the melted butter and Xucker. Then press the mixture into the bottom oft he pan. You can use your fingers for that. Put the dough in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- For the filling, mix all other ingredients at medium-low speed until creamy. It is important to mix only with medium speed and not for too long, otherwise the filling will become too fluid and run out of your form.
- Preheat the oven to 220°C.
- Now pour in the filling and bake the cake for 15 minutes at 220°C. Turn down the heat to 135°C and bake for another hour.
- After baking let the cake chill for another hour in the oven. This is really important so that the cake wont collapse within. Before serving put the cake in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
- Cut out the stalk of the cabbage. Cut in half and cook in hot water for a few minutes until the cabbage is soft.
- Meanwhile cut the apple into small slices. Separate the pomegranate kernels. Wash and chop the parsley.
- Take the cabbage out of the water and cut it into small strips. In a bowl mix it together with the apples, pomegranate, parsley and walnuts.
- In a small glass put all ingredients for the dressing. Put on the lid and mix well. Pour over the salad and still eat warm.
- Cook the potatoes through and peel them. Then put them evenly on a baking tray and bake them for about 15 Minuten at 150°C. It’s important that there is enough space so that the potatoes can evaporate well.
- Put the potatoes through a potatoe press twice. You can also use a blender if you don’t have a press.
- Melt the butter and add together with the other ingredients to the mashed potatoes. Mix everything well until there is a nice dough. If the dough is really sticky add some more food starch.
- Cover your hands with food starch and form small dumblings out of the dough.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a simmer. Drop the dumplings carefully into the simmering water and cook for about 15 minutes. Do not boil or the dumplings will fall apart.
- Serve the dumplings together with the warm Red Cabbage-Salad.
- Cook and peel the potatoes. Cut into small slices, add to a big bowl and set aside to cool.
- In a pan with some oil fry the sausages on medium heat.
- Meanwhile cut the apple, onion, gherkins, and spring onions into small pieces.
- When the potatoes are cool enough mix all ingredients for the salad together.
- In a glass whisk together all ingredients for the dressing and pour over the salad.
- I recommend to let the salad rest for a few hours and allow the salad to blend well before eating.
- Eat both the salad and sausages, together.
What are we both up to during Christmas?
We intend to spend some time simply enjoying and appreciating the things we have. Taking some time to recharge and catch up with those important things that may still have managed to slip under the radar whilst we’re running around our busy schedules. We’ll be adding some sport in here and there but also letting ourselves fully relax and be ready to start the new year with a bang!