Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Dinner, Santa,

shrimp cocktailSo the menu for last night was English style Shrimp cocktail, oven barbecued pork chops with runner beans and goat cheese potato purée followed by mincemeat tart and a dollop of cream. I have previously posted the recipes for all of these except the dessert and the beans which were just plain. I gave my new pant suit a trial run too. It is now a dirty pant suit, well the top anyway. The food went down well and our guests apparently enjoyed everything. I ate too much potato. Oh well, tomorrow is another day. The picture shows the shrimp with a North American style sauce which is predominantly tomato ketchup and horseradish. Our sauce is not the same but of course I forgot to take pictures. It’s made with ketchup, mayonnaise, Worcester sauce, lemon juice, onion and celery. We also add lettuce to the bottom of the dish.

I just discovered Santa is a Canadian. We all know he lives at the SantaNorth Pole and at the current time the North Pole is in the northern reaches of Canada. Canadian air forces currently have the job of escorting his sleigh on Christmas Eve having had the responsibility passed on to them by Norad. The Department of Immigration apparently awarded Santa full Canadian citizenship although, as stated, he is really a citizen of the world.

Here’s a nice goodie of a recipe from, just right for a chocoholic.

Pecan-Chocolate Chip Pie

Source: Cooking at a Glance - Pies and Pastries

Makes 10 servings
There's only one way to improve on a pecan pie: Add chocolate! The resulting pie is rich and filling, so cut the pieces small.

For the Pie:
3 eggs
1 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup margarine or butter, melted
one 6-ounce package semisweet chocolate pieces (1 cup) or 1 cup chopped semisweet chocolate
1 cup pecan halves
Pastry for Single-Crust Pie
For the Topping:
10 pecan halves
1 cup whipping cream, whipped

In a medium mixing bowl use a rotary beater or wire whisk to lightly beat eggs just till mixed. Stir in corn syrup, sugar, and melted margarine or butter. Mix well. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the chocolate pieces; stir remaining chocolate pieces and 1 cup pecan halves into filling. Set filling aside.
Prepare and roll out pastry as directed. Line a 9-inch pie plate with pastry. Trim and crimp edge of pastry. Pour filling into pastry shell. To prevent overbrowning, cover the edge of the pie with foil. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 20-25 minutes more, or till center appears nearly set when shaken. Cool on a rack.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan melt reserved chocolate pieces over low heat. Dip one end of each of the 10 pecan halves into melted chocolate. Place on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet and refrigerate about 15 minutes, or till chocolate is firm.
Dollop whipped cream on each slice. Insert a chocolate-dipped pecan half in each dollop of whipped cream. Store in the refrigerator.

Have a great day


  1. Hi Jo. How wonderful if I could have a meal with you. As you know I'm travelling and it's always a challenge to find food you like. Everything seems to be a carbohydrate overload. Makes me realise how healthily we eat in Australia. If I don't stop stuffing my face with baguettes, Roquefort cheese, Gouda cheese, Brie cheese, duck rilettes, duck pate....I'll have to pay for an extra plane seat, lol!

    1. I wish you could come to dinner Denise. I know what you mean about the European food. The French, in particular, have wonderful food but they don't eat so much of it (or they didn't) so they don't become the size of houses. Duck anything sounds wonderful to me as duck is priced beyond my pocket book in Canada.

  2. The menu sounds wonderful. I am cheating with my pecan pie this year. I found a wonderful jarred filling at Williams-Sonoma. But maybe I'll add some chocolate.

    1. My cooking is no longer as involved as it used to be, or as yours is, just can't spend that much time standing any more. As it is I sit down to slice the beans, whip the cream and peel the shrimp.

      Your pie sounds good.

  3. I love a good pecan pie. I'm looking for recipes that don't use corn syrup. I do have one that I can modify. Haven't mad it yet. I'll let you know when I do.

    Glad your dinner party went well! Great menu and easy to do. Nothing wrong with easy. The purpose of a dinner party is socializing with your guests. Can't do it justice if you're dragging from putting together a complicated menu. Mom always said, simple and elegant.

    Sia McKye Over Coffee

  4. Me too Sia. Never see one without syrup, what do you use instead?

    You are so right, you really don't want to be dragging when you are supposed to be entertaining. These days I have to do a lot of prep work in order to avoid just that.

  5. Hi Jo
    I know you said you've posted the recipes before but can you let me have the goat cheese/potato puree recipe as we've just bought a huge goat cheese home from Fuerteventura (their most famous export item)

    1. Well, didn't you send me one? I have emailed you the recipe. Enjoy