Food blogger Wee Lynn Teo takes us around Strathfield to find the best eats for Christmas

Fantasy: Neil Perry merrily sends out festive morsels while you mingle graciously, leaving in your wake charmed guests and the barest hint of eau de Cartier.

Reality: The hosts slog for five days, cooking everything from scratch.  Come 25 December, all they want for Christmas is a Panadol, a lie-down, and to escape from eau de turkey.

With the aid of Strathfield’s culinary elves I set out to liberate local kitchen slaves by sourcing the best pre-cooked courses in the region.

Kia generously puts me on the road and I embark on a safari in search of a first-class, fuss-free Christmas feast. 

I pinball across Strathfield in style, driving the sleek, futuristic Kia Cerato SLi sedan, which sports a coupe-like roofline and LED daytime running lights. 

Now it’s time to create your own marvellous menu from these easy options. 

 

Starters

Antipasto

Bring your heirloom reindeer platter to Italian deli Cibo & Cibo, select your favourite salumi and grilled vegetables ($20-$37/kg), and voilà!  Behold the immaculately arranged platter.  Simply transport home and serve. 

Owner Angelina Canturi also assembles delectable gourmet baskets – the perfect present for food-lovers.  She doesn’t charge extra for arranging the platter or packing the basket.

 

Tiger prawns

Rochester Street Quality Meats supplements its meats with salmon and barramundi.  This way, Homebush customers can get some surf with their turf.

I’ll be getting my turkey with 1kg of juicy cooked Queensland tiger prawns ($36.90) – especially brought in for Christmas – and dip them in wasabi mayonnaise.

 

Smoked salmon 

Inching along Parramatta Road to North Strathfield doesn’t faze me in my climate-controlled, USB-equipped Cerato cabin. 
I’m too busy singing along to my iPod’s Christmas jazz from six speakers. 

I arrive at Delitalia for 1kg of luxe smoked salmon for $30.  A titanic tray will be a hit
with guests. 

 

Salads 

Delitalia’s chilled counter houses prepared salads in classic and novel combinations, made fresh daily.

How about a 1-litre box ($9) of vinegar-free prosciutto, parmigiano and pomegranate salad?  Or a hearty vegetarian salad of grilled vegetables, avocado and bocconcini?  Sure beats washing countless salad leaves!

Reversing in the Bakehouse Quarter’s many-pillared car park is effortless, thanks to the Cerato’s rear-view camera display.

 

Mains

Ravioli hearts

Along the Hume Highway, red lights seem shorter when I’m ensconced in the Cerato’s electronically adjusted eight-way seat with lumbar support. 

Just off the highway is Frattelli’s Fresh Pasta which makes fresh, preservative-free pasta for supermarkets, restaurants and savvy retail customers. 

Spinach and ricotta ravioli hearts ($10 for a 1kg pack) are only available during the festive season.  Pair with mushroom cream sauce ($12 for 1 litre) for an instant, indulgent vegetarian dish.

 

Roasts

At Rochester Street Quality Meats, you can go the whole hog without stuffing and trussing.

Father-and-son duo David and Jhi Cornall can recite the provenance of their free-range, hormone-free and chemical-free meats faster than you can say “paddock to plate”.

 

Top picks for Christmas ($15-$30/kg) are:

Turkey with cranberry and sage stuffing– Game Farm turkeys. 

Standing rib roast with a 12-ingredient spice rub– grass-fed Aberdeen Black Angus.

Rolled pork loin with fig and pistachio stuffing– Western Plains Pork.  (Jhi’s tip on using boiling water to get crisp crackling really works.)

 

Desserts

Gingerbread

The delights at Cheeky Chocolate include an elaborate gingerbread mansion crafted to order by award-winning dessert chef Elicia Chan.

On a smaller scale are quaint miniature gingerbread houses, with Santa in front ($22).  Which child wouldn’t love these?

 

Christmas gelato, summer fruit

For a painless but popular dessert, get tubs of artisan gelato in Gelatissimo’s new Christmas flavours ($19.70 for a 1-litre tub).  Serve with fruit from Sydney Markets at Flemington.

Pan di Stelle (“Bread of the Stars”) is intensely chocolatey gelato embedding crunchy biscuit crumble.  To really dazzle your guests, serve it with firm, glossy cherries from boxes stamped “25-30mm” (the cherry’s diameter). 

Christmas Macaron is panna cotta gelato with red, green and silver macarons adding almond fragrance and chewiness.  This mild-flavoured gelato goes well with juicy mangoes.

 

We wish you a Strathfield Christmas,

And a feast full of cheer!
 

Get it here 

Cheeky Chocolate, 11 George St, North Strathfield, 9764 5966

Cibo & Cibo, 7 Cave Rd, Strathfield, 9642 5007

Delitalia, 3 George St, North Strathfield, 9746 1822 (where Harris Farm used to be)

Frattelli’s Fresh Pasta, 2/6 Braidwood Street, South Strathfield, 9742 3269

Gelatissimo, Strathfield Plaza, Shop 1, The Boulevarde, Strathfield, 9746 3965

Rochester Street Quality Meats, 25 Rochester St, Homebush, 9746 7603

Sydney Produce Market, Austin Avenue, Sydney Markets


Comments

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
If you have your own website, enter its address here and we will link to it for you. (please include http://).
eg. http://www.mysite.com.au
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.