Leave those shop-bought sauces on the shop shelf – with a Vitamix, making incredible sauces from scratch has never been easier.
For a lot of us, the best part about Christmas dinner isn’t the turkey – it’s the fact that there are so many different things to add to your plate. Roast parsnips, buttered carrots, spoonful’s of stuffing, lashings of gravy; every person at the dinner table can take a little bit of what they want and assemble their own plate according to what they like.
One of the best ways to add something a little different to the traditional festive offering is to bring a few flavourful sauces to the table. Some complement the rich, comforting elements of a Christmas spread, while others provide a contrasting sweetness. But while many home cooks will simply buy a jar of ready-made sauce to decant into a bowl, making your own not only bolsters your foodie credentials – it results in some truly outstanding sauces that might become the most popular element of your Christmas dinner. And by using a Vitamix to create them, your family will be astounded at just how incredible they taste.
This smooth, traditional sauce can be traced back to Medieval times, and it sits pride of place on many a Christmas dinner table. The subtle spicing from the cloves, nutmeg and bay leaves combined with the rich cream and milk works incredibly well with the classic turkey, vegetables and gravy that make up a Christmas dinner. Once the milk has been infused with an onion and the spices, it can be strained before being blitzed with the most important element – the bread. Shop-bought versions tend to have a claggy, slightly lumpy texture, but by making it at home with a Vitamix you’ll be rewarded with a silky smooth sauce that’s just the right consistency. You can even get creative and add your own herbs or spices into the mix, for something a little more personal.
Bread sauce complements a Christmas dinner, but cranberry sauce contrasts, adding a sweet, tart flavour to cut through all that delicious savouriness. Most ready-made sauces are full of sugar and tend to taste like jam, which can be a bit overpowering. Making it at home is healthier, results in a much better texture and means you can add other ingredients such as citrus zest and wine – try cracked black pepper, cardamom or juniper berries for something a little different. After simmering the berries until they break down, you can either pulse them in the Vitamix for a rough, chunky finish, or wait until they form a purée before stirring through a few whole cranberries at the end.
The traditional Christmas pudding that’s served at the end of the festive meal can be a bit divisive, but serve a jug of brandy custard on the side and you’ll find everyone can suddenly make room for a little dessert. Brandy butter is the traditional accompaniment but it tends to be far too rich – taking those classic flavours and turning them into a custard is far more appealing. It’s also incredibly easy; just place sugar, milk, double cream, the seeds of half a vanilla pod and some egg yolks into a Vitamix and blend. The friction of the blades will gently cook and thicken the ingredients into a custard, at which point you can stir through a good glug of brandy before serving it warm with your pudding.