Christmas Family Lunch In Central Victoria


Another year almost over, another Christmas-Newtonmas behind us! December appeared out of nowhere and with a family holiday to Warrnambool in the middle of the month, I ran out of time (and a little steam) to get the house remotely Christmassy. I’m happy to pass on the decorating but the kids wanted something. I don’t want a plastic Christmas tree and I don’t want a real one either (have you read The Little Fir Tree? SO SAD) and so this year we had this (and what’s in the top pic. Christmas-Newtonmas!). Ho ho ho:


Our relatives all had plans, so this year we did nothing whatsoever on Christmas day and I loved it. The kids got to do whatever they wanted but as it was a stinking hot day (I think it reached 37C/98.6F) that mostly involved all of us hanging out in the cooler part of the house reading or playing computer games. In the evening we watched The Santa Claus and the sequel. We’ve actually watched the first movie the previous two years but the kids forgot. Anyway, I asked Arthur and DeeW what food they wanted me to make (sausage rolls, apple pies). Our Christmas Day lunch and dinner were nothing special. The kids wanted toasted vegan cheese sandwiches for dinner and I was happy with their no-fuss request. So breakfast was when I gave them something healthy to eat (well, there is an unnecessary application of icing sugar on the strawberries but it’s SNOW, which makes it okay):


Christmas Day for me involved a lot of meal prep and having the oven on (blergh). Boxing Day (today) was to be at my sister and her partner’s home in sortof-central Victoria, about an hour’s drive from Melbourne. Fortunately the temperature dropped way down to a beautiful 22C/35.6F this time. There were to be eleven people for lunch so naturally we made enough food to feed sixty million.

I decided to take some cashew cheese and crackers. One of my favourite recipes is by Cate from A Traveling Cook. I attended her cooking classes and a great recipe was included in her class notes. I made one batch but created two flavours from it. The first is Cate’s recipe for extra sharp cheddar style. The second is the same but I added sundried tomatoes and truffle oil:


My sister made awesome roast potatoes tossed in semolina and rosemary:


My contribution was a salad made with freekeh, broccolini and smoked almonds. I loved the similar dish we had at the Maha vegan degustation and I’ve been experimenting with my own version but mehhh, something is missing. Gotta work on it some more but it was still okay:


My blurry lunch plate! I made a Tofurky roast which I really liked. Unfortunately I had misplaced my oven timer when it was cooking, and then got distracted talking to a neighbour so the poor Tofurky was a little bit of burnt. I made some gravy using the Silky Chickpea Gravy recipe from Appetite For Reduction by Isa Chandra M. My sister made tabouleh and the roast sweet potatoes and we threw in some garlic bread:christmas2015lunch

Dessert! I made the gingerbread cheezecake from Where’s The Beef? I had tried this cheezecake when Cindy from Where’s The Beef? brought it to a vegan potluck and I loved it. I’m very greedy when it comes to cheesecake crust so I doubled the crust ingredients. If you use a gluten free ginger biscuit, the whole cake can be gluten free:



More over zealous food preparation by me in the form of Black Forest Cherry Ripe Ripple Cake. I’ll be posting the recipe very soon. I made a few of these in trifle cups (Aldi had a packet of six for a few bucks recently) but figured that because we had so much food and other sweets, people could just spoon out a portion for themselves. Good call:


My mum and sister made Saraili, though this time with more orange flavour to the syrup. Soooo good!


We really need to walk all that food right off. My sister lives in such a great location. They currently have a neighbour’s horses on their land and some magpies that adore my sister’s partner because he feeds them. They come right up to the door looking for him. There are also lots of noisy cockatoos and other beautiful birds and kangaroos too, though they weren’t around today.


It’s a great area for post-food blowout walks:

christmas2015day2 christmas2015day3

Many hours later and I’m still so full! We had that nice rainbow up there on the drive home to cap off a wonderful day.

And pssst! I’ve started a Veganopoulous page on Facebook too if you’d like to follow me there.

Best wishes to you all for all for a great holiday season, and may whatever you’re doing be full of awesome!

14 thoughts on “Christmas Family Lunch In Central Victoria

  1. Double crust! That is smart work, I love the cheesecake crust too. Really glad you enjoyed this recipe so much.

    Your photos from around your sister’s property are lovely!

    • thanks! The cheezecake was very popular and my bro-in-law took the leftovers on his camping trip today with his newly vegan brother 😀

  2. Whilst your blog followers get to read about and see your food pics, I get to indulge in all the leftovers! Many thanks for my breakfast today (the addictive cashew cheese) and what will no doubt be a delicious lunch (the gingerbread cheezecake – again, addictive). I guess at some point today I will have some vegies (and contemplate some exercise) but in the meantime I’ll indulge in these yummy treats. What’s next on the menu!!!

  3. 37 degrees is a far cry from the two feet of snow that’s fallen around here but 22 degrees is perfect! Love seeing the country side, the forest and that beautiful charcoal grey horse! I have so many fond memories (and pictures) feeding aussie magpies <3 Happy Holidays!

    • thanks! As much as I hate hot weather I think I’d hate shoveling snow more. I think it would be fun for about an hour then the novelty would wear off fast 😉

  4. so many beautiful pictures — both of the food and of the setting. I love that you had such a quiet and peaceful (and boiling hot) xmas, followed by a festive Boxing Day gathering. We don’t have Boxing Day as an occasion here in the US, but it looks like fun. 🙂

  5. Wishing you a Happy New Year.
    It makes me smile to learn of the difference in weather – its pouring here and you have hot weather which is reflected in some of the food. Love the tree shaped watermelon. I haven’t had Tofurky and look forward to trying it one day. I love everything you have shared with us. See you in 2016.

    • I love seeing all the weather/seasonal foods from blogs overseas, I especially love it when it’s autumn in other countries!