Christmas is already here. It is enough to go out and see the streets lit up, contemplate the shop windows flooded with red and hear Christmas carols everywhere. With less than 10 days to Christmas Eve, most of us are looking forward to family gatherings… but also with some trepidation. Conversation, laughter, and culinary delights give way to binge eating and a few extra pounds if we eat too heavy meals and dinners. To avoid this, we can delight our loved ones with a light menu that will fill their stomachs and souls with happiness, without leaving negative after-effects.
For many people, the Christmas season is synonymous with food in abundance. Dinners in which an endless succession of dishes are piling up in front of our eyes… and inside our bodies. However, this has been changing in recent years. Most people have come to realize that it’s not the quantity that matters, but the quality of what they eat. A light menu can be much more delicious, elegant and comforting than a copious and excessive one.
For this reason, at Pazo Baión we have designed a light and easy-to-prepare menu composed of four dishes in which the raw materials, seasonal products, and the pairing shine: our three Rías Baixas.
Open the notes app on your cell phone or take paper and pen, this light menu to toast Christmas with Pazo Baión and your loved ones will make your lunches and dinners shine with their light.
Cebreiro cheese, walnuts, and apple pâté paired with Gran a Gran
Throughout this month, the charcuterie and sausage areas of supermarkets are filled with pâtés. There are all kinds and conditions. Made from meats, fruits, dairy products… Pâté is, without a doubt, a typical Christmas product, so we can’t think of a better way to start our light menu to triumph this holiday season than making a very simple homemade pâté. For this, we are going to use a world-famous Galician product, the delicious Cebreiro cheese, and two seasonal products: apple and walnut.
Ingredients A tub of spreadable cheese A generous piece of do Cebreiro cheese One apple 200 grams of chopped walnuts
The preparation of this dish could not be easier. First of all, you have to mix the cheese spread with the Cebreiro cheese. To do this, just arm yourself with a fork and patience and mix them little by little until you get a homogeneous mass. Then add the finely chopped walnuts and the apple also cut into small pieces. All the ingredients are unified and the dish is ready. It is as simple as that. If you want to embellish and embellish this simple dish you can crown the pâté with some whole walnuts.
What’s left? Devour it accompanied by Gran a Gran, our semi-dry wine, the perfect companion for the most delicious pâtés, whose honeyed and candied notes combine perfectly with the flavor of cheese with as much personality as Cebreiro.
Grilled razor clams paired with Pazo Baión
In a light menu for Christmas, a sample of the exquisite Galician seafood could not be missing. Even more, if we take into account that Pazo Baión is located a few kilometers from the Arousa estuary, popularly known as the marine pantry of Europe.
When designing our light menu we have opted for a raw material that shines with little light and needs little effort when preparing the dish: razor clams. This classic of our gastronomy will delight your guests and, in addition, will consume very little effort.
Ingredients Half a kilo of razor clams A clove of garlic Parsley Half a lemon Extra olive oil Coarse salt
The most important step when preparing this dish for our light menu is the first of them all: clean the razor clams well. Unfortunately, almost all of us have found ourselves at some time with remains of sand in some mollusk and we know that it is an unpleasant sensation that weighs down the enjoyment of any delicatessen of the sea. That is why it is so important to make sure that our razors are well-cleaned. For it is advisable to place them vertically in a container full of water and coarse salt for three hours, changing the water for a new one every hour.
At the end of this operation, we must pass them through water and clean them carefully, to confirm that there are no remains or impurities and to eliminate the excess salt that could have been caused by the previous step. From this point on, everything will be a piece of cake.
First, you will have to clean the parsley and chop it very finely. You must also chop the garlic into thin slices. Once you have undertaken these simple actions it will be time to cook the razor clams. Prepare a griddle, pour the olive oil, and brown the garlic for a couple of minutes with the salt.
Then add the razor clams, wait for them to open, and then place them in such a way that the meat is in contact with the heating surface for one minute. When finished, turn them over, sauté them with oil and the juice of half a lemon, let them cook for another half minute in this position, turn off the heat and distribute the parsley on top. We promise you that they will smell and taste great.
This dish will become a sublime culinary experience if you pair it with our Pazo Baión, the perfect companion for seafood. A wine that stands out for its intense varietal perfume and sensational development in the mouth.
Baked capon paired with Vides de Fontán
Poultry is one of the most important products of our gastronomy. A true classic that is used to prepare the most tender stews or to star in surprising roasts. Christmas is the perfect occasion to get the family together and take advantage of the occasion to roast a capon. For this, we will need, basically, the best raw material, an oven, and patience.
Ingredients One capon Four potatoes Extra olive oil Two cloves of garlic Two oranges or two lemons A glass of brandy Rosemary, thyme, and oregano to taste Salt and pepper
First, we have to prepare the marinade for the capon. To do this, we crush the garlic and mix it with the spices, a generous dash of oil, salt, pepper, and orange or lemon juice. Once we have this preparation finished, we proceed to spread it on the capon, which must be previously well cleaned.
Preheat the oven to 180º, place the capon in a tray, and put it inside. Then, pour the brandy over the capon and let it cook for three hours. Every half an hour or three-quarters of an hour we should open the oven and sprinkle the chicken with the juice it releases, to prevent it from drying out during cooking. After an hour and a half, we can introduce the potatoes in the tray, previously cut into slices.
When 15 minutes are left until the end of the baking time, we can put the capon in the oven, bathe it again in its juice and activate the grill so that the skin is as shiny as in the photograph.
Once we have taken the capon out of the oven, there is only one last step left before serving this delicious meat from our light menu: turning its juice into a sensational sauce. To do this, we will collect all the broth from the tray, separate a small amount and pour the rest into a frying pan. In the broth that we have set aside, we will add a spoonful of cornstarch and dissolve it. Then, we will also add this mixture to the frying pan and we will stir until it acquires the texture of the sauce. When you have achieved this, turn off the heat and pour it into a saucepan, so that your loved ones can accompany the capon with this wonderful sauce.
What is the final step? Serve the capon and open a bottle of Vides de Fontán, a Rías Baixas whose aging process extends over three years and which stands out in the wine Olympus for the spicy and smoky notes that make it the best pairing for white meats such as the baked capon of our Christmas light menu.
Lime mousse paired with Gran a Gran
After the first three delicacies of our light menu, it’s time for a dessert that will not only sweeten the palates of your family and friends but also refresh them: a lime mousse.
The mousse is a fascinating dessert in which the flavor is as important as the texture. A dish that delights the little ones at home, but also the older ones. A perfect alternative to the typical Christmas sweets and the best way to end a light menu and avoid a binge.
Ingredients Two lemons and two limes Half a kilo of Greek yogurt 250 grams of condensed milk Half a liter of liquid whipping cream Sugar
The first step consists of squeezing the lemons and limes and grating the latter. Next, proceed to whip the cream. To do this, beat the cream constantly with a little sugar until it acquires the consistency of whipped cream. Once you have achieved this, pour in the condensed milk, yogurt, juice, and half of the lime zest. Mix everything until the result is homogeneous.
From here you will only have to slowly add the cream, being very careful not to let it go down. To do this we recommend you use enveloping movements and be delicate. When everything is fully integrated you will only have to pour the mixture into pretty containers, garnish with the rest of the lime zest, giving a fun green touch to the dessert of our light menu, and put the mousse in the fridge until serving time.
And that’s it, so much for your work as chef of this light menu so that Christmas does not fill us up, but gives us good feelings and culinary delights. Grab a bottle of Gran a Gran and fill the glasses of all your guests, enjoy this refreshing dessert together, chat, reminisce, laugh and toast to the year that is coming to an end and that 2023 will be full of good news.
At Pazo Baión we will also toast to your health!