With winter upon us, home entertaining has never been more enticing. If you need more of a reason to entertain at home than just chilly nights, think Christmas in July. Put up your Christmas decorations, organise a Kris Kringle among friends and family and invite your dearest and closest for a dinner party they won’t forget.

With the growing popularity of television cooking shows, the temptation is there to cook up a storm at home and produce delicious, healthy and impressive dishes while still being able to talk to guests and enjoy the evening.

We spoke with Nicholas Coughlin, one of Miele’s Culinary Experts in Knoxfield, Victoria, about how to whip up a mouthwatering and easy dinner party menu for your very own Christmas in July celebration.

“I’m a big fan of Christmas in July. The fact that it’s cold outside lends itself to enjoying the best food and drinks the season has to offer with those closest to us, be it friends or family,” Mr Coughlin said.

“Cooking with Miele appliances means that you’ll never need to rush around at the last minute to make sure everything is done. With features like Sous-vide in our steam range for preserving delicate flavours, and the food probe in our Ovens for things like roasts, you know that the food that gets put in front of your guests is the best it could possibly be,” he said.

“When cooking for a dinner party, I know that the Miele appliances will do justice to the quality of the ingredients you source and the hard work you put into the menu,” he added.

The entrée

Start your Christmas in July banquet with acclaimed Australian chef and Miele’s ambassador Shannon Bennett’s recipe – White Asparagus Soup.

“This soup works wonderfully as a counterbalance to the main course, with the mild olive oil and the sherry vinegar creating a delicate crispness without being too pungent and overwhelming. And the mint is a surprisingly good garnish, as well as a hint as to where the main is going,” said Mr Coughlin.

Recipe can be found here.

The main

Second course and the main event – Roast Pork Belly with Vegetables and Apple Chips, another recipe courtesy of Shannon Bennett.

“The longer, slower roast of this pork belly ensures that the most nuanced flavours of the cut are preserved, and the quick warm-up the next day using Miele’s exclusive Moisture Plus function means you’re going to get the crispiest skin and most tender meat,” Mr Coughlin said.

Recipe can be found here.

The dessert

Nothing says Christmas like Shannon Bennett’s Christmas Pudding topped with Brandy Anglaise and Brandy Butter.

“Prepare and cook everything the day before, then reheat the pudding during the post-mains recovery. The fact that Miele’s Steam Oven allows for such delicate and controlled cooking, means that as long as you’re covering the pudding properly, the hardest thing you’ll have to do in the six-hour cook is refill the water jug a couple of times,” said Mr Coughlin.

Top tips from Shannon Bennett include: ·

Puddings can be kept in the refrigerator for four months, well wrapped with cling wrap or frozen for up to 12 months.

Brandy Anglaise can be stored in the refrigerator for up to four days.

Brandy Butter can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer.

Recipe can be found here

Miele offers complimentary product demonstration classes at its eight Miele Experience Centres across Australia and New Zealand located at: Knoxfield, Victoria; South Melbourne, Victoria; Frenchs Forest, Sydney, NSW; Hilton, South Australia; Eagle Farm, Queensland; Claremont, Western Australia; Southport, Queensland; Auckland, New Zealand.

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