Christmas 2023

Christmas 2023

Remember all those Christmas movies we watched? Some of the famous lines in them are memorable because they are funny, poignant or memorable.

Or all three.

Here are some that I love.

“Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to.” — Fred Gailey in Miracle on 34th Street.

“The thing about trains ... it doesn’t matter where they’re going. What matters is deciding to get on.” — Conductor in The Polar Express.

“This is extremely important. Will you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back?" — Kevin McCallister in Home Alone.

“It’s Christmas Eve. It’s the one night of the year when we all act a little nicer, we smile a little easier, we cheer a little more.” — Frank Cross in Scrooged.

“I realised that Christmas is the time to be with the people you love.” — Billy Mack Love Actually.

This Christmas, make something sweet for someone you love.

Like this quick dessert from

Quick chocolate panforte

½ (110g) caster sugar

½ cup (175g) honey

50g unsalted butter

300g good quality fruit mince

1 2/3 cups (250g) plain flour, sifted

1 cup (100g) cocoa powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

! tsp mixed spice

Grated zest of 1 orange

2/3 cup (100g) each roasted hazelnuts, slivered pistachios and macadamias

1/2 cup (100g) chopped dried figs

Icing sugar, to dust.

Preheat oven to 160°C and line an 18cm x 28cm lamington pan with baking paper.

Stir sugar, honey, butter and mince in a pan over low heat for 3-5 minutes until sugar dissolves.

Sift flour, cocoa and spices into a large bowl. Add zest, nuts, figs, mince mixture and a pinch of salt. Stir to combine well, the mixture will be quite stiff. Tip into the prepared pan and use wet hands to press the top all over until smooth.

Bake for 15-18 minutes until firm on top. Cool in pan, then invert onto a board and dust with icing sugar.

Cut lengthways into 5 thin sections, then cut widthways into 8 sections to form about 40 x 3cm squares.

Keep for one month in an airtight container in fridge, then pack into muslin or cellophane gift bags.

I wish everyone a joyous and peaceful Christmas, full of love, family and friends and good food.

Peace on earth.