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COOK AT HOME: Host Christmas in July

Decorative green wreath on a napkin as a part of table appointments, clean white tablecloth background, top view. Christmas table place setting.

If this current cold weather reminds you and your family of warm roasts, mulled wine and snow, then it may in fact be the season to be jolly. That’s right, Christmas in July is a great reason to get the family over, invite some friends and enjoy delicious food, wine and spread some Christmas-like joy.

No-one really knows where the term Christmas in July originated from however, it is thought to have come from the crispy, cool and snowy Blue Mountains in New South Wales. Aside from real Christmas being celebrated on the 25th of December, Christmas in July is the perfect opportunity to celebrate Christmas like our Northern hemisphere families do.

To host a festive July celebration below are some great QCWA Country Kitchen approved recipes to get you started.

Start with a delicious and healthy cheese platter packed with fruit, vegetables and wholegrain crackers. Opt for seasonal varieties in your local area.

 

fried cutlet in ceramic form on a wooden table

Enjoy pork, apple and sage burgers with a macadamia mustard for the main meal. Pair this with a side of seasonal vegetables coated in fresh herbs and spices.

green salad green beans with pesto.selective focus

For a side of delicious greens, go for this green bean salad.

 

For dessert, try this warm bread and berry pudding made with blueberries, sultanas on wholemeal bread.

Insights from Janelle Reeves – CK Facilitator at Kingaroy Branch

[caption id="attachment_2399" align="aligncenter" width="480"]Janelle Reeves Janelle Reeves, QCWA Gympie South Burnett Division, Kingaroy Branch.[/caption]

Why did you decide to get involved with QCWA’s Country Kitchens program?
I was a new member to QCWA Kingaroy Branch and just learning about the different activities offered to members. I enjoy cooking and like putting a healthy spin on old recipes. I also enjoy gardening and cooking with fresh produce. When the Country Kitchens program was introduced, I thought it sounded a great opportunity to combine the things I love and pass this onto others.

What part of the QCWA Country Kitchens program appeals to you the most and why?
It has been great to meet a variety of people wanting to learn how to make meals heathier.

What have you enjoyed the most about becoming a facilitator?
The interaction with our Country Kitchens’ Nutritionists/Dietitians has been fantastic. They have passed on a wealth of information.

In what ways have you been able to reinforce QCWA’s Country Kitchens five key messages within your community?
The five key messages were displayed at the Kingaroy Show and promoted at the cooking program. Ten workshops were held in Kingaroy during 2016 – five workshops in Kingaroy with Kingaroy Branch and another five with Kingaroy Twilight Branch. The hands-on demonstration preparing rice paper rolls was great and it encouraged participants to prepare meals at home and to eat more colourful vegetables in each day. At a recent Fair, fruit salad was promoted as a healthy snack. This helped reinforce what a serve (of fruit) looks like and that fresh fruit tastes great!

Does your Branch have a QCWA Country Kitchens inspired community activity or event planned in the near future?
This year we will be promoting a weekly walking group that would conclude with a healthy snack and some take home information about the five key messages.

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