At My Tradition

Christmas tree

Jason from Don’t Boil the Sauce has started off At My Tradition for bloggers to share their end of year traditions. We celebrate summer solstice in our house, but it’s very much like a nature based Christmas so we have many of the same traditions.

Christmas tree decorations

The main feature in the house is the tree which is covered in red and white decorations, many of them made by my Aunty and some made by myself. We have fairy lights but tend to not put them on to save electricity. Our tree is missing something for the top, but we haven’t found the right thing yet. There is also some red and white heart banners my Aunty also made.


We all have stockings, even the dog who gets some treats on the day. Here’s mine – I used iron-on transfers to add the birds, so it’s a unique stocking.

Christmas pudding

We alternate who’s family we spend Christmas day with each year and do all the traditional Christmasy things then. You know….. Christmas crackers and silly paper hats, and coins in the pudding.

In our family we try to have a roast meal on solstice day (but sometimes we do a day that’s close by).  Matt cooks it and we usually have the works with Yorkshire puddings. Afterwards we have Christmas pudding and save the mince pies for another day because we are usually full by then. I made a Christmas pudding one year, but since then my pudding pan has gone rusty! I try to make rum balls and gingerbread around this time of year.

Happy summer solstice.

Thanks Jason for organising At My Tradition

Book review: Maggie’s Christmas by Maggie Beer


I was pleased as punch when I got myself a copy of Maggie’s Christmas by Maggie Beer.

The book is divided into sections and includes crabbing at Port Parham, Pre-Christmas Drinks, Carols Buffet, Christmas Eve Supper, Christmas Day Lunch, Boxing Day Leftoverss and then New Year’s Eve Lunch and Dinner as well as Food for the Beach House.


The book is illustrated by full pages of colour photography for most of the recipes.

Some of the recipes contain unusual ingredients such as burrata, vino cotto, and verjuice which you can find at a good deli or online at Maggie Beer.


The only drawback to the book is most of the recipes serve 8 people, which is ideal if you have a big family, but not so good for the every day. But these are really recipes for special occasions so it is appropriate.

I cooked the warm brioche and ice-cream sandwiches and since it was my first time at brioche, I was comforted by Maggie’s reassuring instructions that the mixture would be moist. They were delicious.


Be tempted by seasonal recipes such as pickled fig-glazed leg of ham, pavlova with lady finger banana and passion fruit topping, and Christmas pudding with cumquat brandy butter. For Christmas day lunch choose between roost goose with marmalade and cumquat stuffing and goose fat roasted potatoes, roast turkey with prune and orange stuffing and Cumberland sauce, or roast pork loin with verjuice and grapes.

Maggie’s Christmas by Maggie Beer is a beautiful book you’ll want to cherish for special occasions with family.

Maggie’s Christmas by Maggie Beer – available on