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Fun & Festive

Two of our most-loved local foodies share their favourite Christmas recipes that are sure to be crowd-pleasers among family and friends.

Sweet Marmalade Ham

Serves 8

  • 1/2 ham on the bone
  • 150g ham glaze or jar of marmalade
  • 30 cloves
  • 24 fresh, plump cherries
  1. Preheat oven to 170°C.
  2. Remove the outer skin of the ham and reserve (use when storing ham to keep moist).
  3. Using a sharp knife, score the fat into diamond shapes.
  4. Place the ham on a rack in a roasting tray and brush with glaze (we love Buderim Ginger Marmalade).
  5. Pour one cup of water into the roasting pan.
  6. Bake the ham for 25 minutes until golden, remove from the oven and set aside.
  7. If there is liquid in the base of the pan, place it on the stove and reduce over a medium heat until syrupy. Then pour it over ham before serving.
  8. Garnish with cherries before serving.

This recipe is supplied by Kim McCosker, of 4 Ingredients.

Martin’s French Toast

Martin’s French Toast is fabulous for a Boxing Day breakfast with extended family.  It’s great as an easy breakfast, or trick it up for a quick dessert. Martin’s hot tip is to use good-quality bacon and real Canadian maple syrup.

Serves 6

  • 8 eggs
  • 500ml thickened cream
  • 1 large Turkish bread loaf
  • 12 rashers of bacon (two per person)
  • cinnamon sugar
  1. Cook the bacon in an oven or fry pan.
  2. Whisk together the eggs and cream.
  3. Cut the Turkish bread into slices, roughly 1-1.5cm-thick ( 12 to 14 slices).
  4. Place the bread into the egg mix and sprinkle liberally with cinnamon.
  5. Melt a little butter in the fry pan and place the bread cinnamon-side down . Then turn over and sprinkle the other side with cinnamon.
  6. Cook until golden and serve with bacon and maple syrup.

Here are some variations on breakfast or for a quick dessert:
Fry banana halves or 1/2 peaches and serve with a dollop of yoghurt/ice cream, maple syrup and toasted almonds. Replace cinnamon and sprinkle with ginger and nutmeg and serve with poached pear or cooked apple, maple syrup, ice cream and cream.

This recipe is supplied by Martin Duncan.

Christmas is a time of fun, festive food and family traditions. We caught up with four popular locals to discover how they will celebrate this year. They offer some of their top tips on how to enjoy a stress-free day.

Ashley Robinson General manager, Alex Surf Club 

How will you spend Christmas Day this year? – We will get an early visit from our two grandkids and then I will do the lunchtime patrol at Alex.

What will definitely be on your Christmas table? Prawns for sure and Coopers Sparkling Ale! I grew up with the hot roast lunch, the pudding with the lucky coins in it and mum slaving over a hot stove to feed us and our free-loading relatives from Melbourne. So, we do the exact opposite – simple is good.

Do you have any family Christmas traditions? The lifeguard visit has become a bit of a tradition, trying to look after the people who look after us at Christmas. We have always tried to drop something nice down to the lifeguard on patrol at Wurtulla.

What is your top tip on reducing the stress at Christmas time? Relax, let your family do whatever makes them happy on Christmas day. No pressure. In my view, Christmas is for kids to enjoy themselves and young families to relax and not worry about what anyone else expects them to do.


Caroline Hutchinson Breakfast announcer, 92.7 MIX FM

How will you spend Christmas Day this year? – I have a grandbaby! Baby Rocco is just over three months old and he is the only present we need this Christmas. But my brother and his family will be here from Bendigo, John’s sister and her family will be up from Brisbane and we’ll all have lunch together
at home.

What will definitely be on your Christmas table? My mum makes the ham, we do seafood and salads, nachos and fried rice (don’t ask – just weird!). My niece Ava and I will make dessert – probably whatever is in the Coles Christmas magazine.

What family traditions do you have? – We always start the day with a swim at Kawana. We go home and put on our Christmas clobber, then drive to Buderim for a champagne with dear friends. The restis a bit more fluid but always finishes with cocktails and a very raucous game of Stealing Santa.

What is your top tip on reducing the stress at Christmas time? Make a plan for the day as a family, then give everyone a job. If you know what will annoy you – discarded wrapping paper, gifts left on the floor, or people not helping – lay down the law early. Other than that, remember Instagram isn’t real life. Other people’s perfect photos had plenty of tears, tantrums and dry turkey behind the scenes. Smile, tell people you love them, and buy your own present if you think it will help.


Martin Duncan The Sunshine Coast Foodie

How will you spend Christmas day this year? – I’m very excited to have special friends up from Brisbane staying a few days. On the day, we will enjoy a healthy, light breakfast, then set up a beautiful long table. My mum will arrive at 11am and my amazing neighbours at noon. There will be a cocktail or two and then on to feasting. Most probably there will be nana naps from food comas, a movie, popcorn and ice cream.

What will definitely be on your Christmas table? – I’ve been craving a sherry trifle with jelly and fruit like my grandma used to make. So, I’ll have a crack at making a huge one. We also love a good pavlova with crunch, fluffy inside and topped with lashings of whipped cream, fresh berries and stone fruit. There will also be Christmas pudding with custard and good vanilla ice cream for my traditional peeps.

What family traditions do you have? – We always watch the move Love Actually on Christmas Eve. However, this year Shirley Valentine has been requested. For the last few years, we have enjoyed wicked cocktails and a fun Secret Santa where you steal presents.

What is your top tip on reducing the stress at Christmas time? – You don’t need to make it hard on yourself. I like to do buffet style with beautiful salads, fresh seafood and leg ham. Remember to get food back in the fridge asap so you can safely use leftovers for easy entertaining over the holidays.


Kim McCosker Founder/author, 4 Ingredients

How will you spend Christmas Day this year? – Christmas Day this year will be a big, festive, family event at our house: a long Christmas-themed table with all the trimmings that everyone contributes to. Everyone gets on famously, so we are all really excited for the big day.

What will definitely be on your Christmas table? – Christmas ham, glazed with Buderim Ginger Marmalade and cloves: salty, sweet and spicy all in one mouthful is everyone’s favourite. Potato salad, beetroot and feta salad, roast salmon, roast chickens with stuffing balls and roast vegies. My mum’s boiled plum pudding and custard, my mother-in-law’s trifle, and my sister-in law’s pavlova.

What family traditions do you have? – There will be the obligatory game of Heads and Tales, with $50 prizemoney for the last person standing. The kids have always loved this start to the day and even now, as adults, they still look forward to it. Also, a sunset cruise on Pumicestone Passage and a karaoke tune or two.

What is your top tip on reducing the stress at Christmas time? – Plan ahead. Don’t leave buying things until the day before. Share the load. Everyone wants to contribute, so let them, as there is nothing nicer than being complimented for your contribution. Don’t stress when things go wrong. If you are the host, just roll with it. Most guests are just pleased to be at someone else’s house.

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