Sunday, January 6, 2008

Gianduja Mousse Torte & Christmas 2007

Happy 2008 everyone! I hope you spent Christmas and the New Year with loved ones and good friends as I did! I also managed some well-deserved rest after all that cooking and baking leading up to Christmas, so that was good too. I left the meals to Chloe and Ming to organise; it’s really nice to have others think about what to serve up for a change. That’s not to say that I took a break from leisurely baking or dessert making, on the contrary, I had a couple of ‘young-er’ girlfriends of mine over the other day and we whipped up a mean Frangelico Tiramisu, Paige and I baked some Lemon Polenta Cranberry cookies that were ‘to die for’ – not literally, thank goodness! Chloe and I baked a Chocolate and Potato cake – definitely her favourite ingredients in the whole wide world, and I made a Chocoholic’s Ultimate Chocolate Mars Bars Cake for Chloe’s 14th Birthday on the 3rd of January.

Christmas Day was easy, I decided that we would do a ‘pot-luck’ and everybody made a dish or two so I didn’t have to slave over a hot kitchen, the weather wasn’t too bad though, 34 degrees Celsius, rather mild compared to Boxing Day, a whopping 44.2 degrees Celsius! We didn’t have the traditional Christmas Turkey and the works –too heavy, I thought, so I made ‘Babi Chin’- a braised pork belly in shallots, garlic and aromatic coriander served with steamed Chinese Buns and some gourmet lettuce and as a second dish, ‘Popiah’ – a Malaysian-Singaporean hawker favourite of stir fried turnip with dried shrimp wrapped in spring roll skins with lettuce, prawns, chopped omelette, Chinese sausage, crushed peanuts and fried shallots, a little dark sweet soy caramel and a prawn paste chilli jam.

You must be wondering why I have not mentioned this dessert that you’re looking at. I’ve decided to call it ‘Gianduja Mousse Torte’- it’s the Christmas Day dessert that I painstakingly made for my family and friends. This dessert that took me two days to create (because of the lack of expertise (hey, this is my first time experimenting with, attempting and putting this dessert together!) and only 8 dessert rings!) is the reason why I’ve not written a post about it up until now. THE VERY THOUGHT OF WRITING OUT THE RECIPE for the Gianduja (pronounced ‘zhan-du-ya’ meaning hazelnut paste. The commercial product ‘nutella’ is what it is) mousse, then the Jaconde layer (a thin, pliable almond sponge), followed by the chocolate caramel truffle layer, not mentioning the dark chocolate mousse and hazelnut wheat biscuit layers IS ENOUGH TO SEND ME OFF ON A HOLIDAY. So, I hope you will be happy with the photos.

And on Christmas Day...

The Dramatic sistas Chloe and Paige happily posing...

...and doing the sisterly thing...

...While Ming captures a candid shot of me preparing the buffet table...

Gift Opening!

... and some of us are hmmmmm.. very enthusiastic! HA!HA!

Some of the Chrissy Food!

The 'Popiah' DIY station...

Kim and Kenny at the Buffet spread...

It's Dessert time! My Gianduja Mousse Torte..

A Lovely Gingerbread House made by Tania of "LittleCheffo". To view the complete set of the Gingerbread House photos, head on to Tania's Blog!

I have something to share with you all. 2008 is a special year for me, as I will be embarking on Teaching Cooking and Baking classes. It’s all very exciting for me and I will have the full details for you on this blog when I’m all ready. With the hustle and bustle of the Holiday Season, ‘Oh for the Love of Food!’ turned ONE very quietly. That’s ok; it was a humbling time for me as I reflected on all the beautiful new friendships I’ve made through this blog. I am very thankful for all the kindness, assistance, and encouraging comments I’ve received from all of you. I hope that 2008 will be another wonderful year of Food Blogging, another wonderful year of getting to know you better. I pray that we will not lose focus of the most important people, relationships and moments of our lives. God Bless you all.


Big Boys Oven said...

oh Carol, what a lovely spread of food and we hope to be able to taste your cooking and baking one day soon.
We wish you first on your embarkment of your baking and cooking class this 2008!
babe, we love your gianduja mousse torte!
send our regards to ming and the beautiful daughters of yours! :)

Ming the Merciless said...

Looked like you guys had a fabulous party. The food on the table looked sooooo good. I love the pokpia idea for Christmas, since it's summer over there. Glad to see your beautiful home.

The gianduja mousse torte (even the name is hard to pronounce) looks delicious.

Gloria Baker said...

Carol, all looks so lovely, really nice. Gloria

Nora B. said...

Dear Carol,
So many news! Firstly have belated birthday to Chloe. Also have blog anniversary, I'm so glad that you ventured into blogging - your food photos are always so elegant and inspiring.

Your Christmas spread sounds delicious, no wonder you needed a break. Everyone looked like they had a great day.

I am so jealous about the classes you are taking, I wish to do the same some day. I will experience the classes vicariously through you, so do post about what you are learning.

Now, your mousse torte looks so pro, are you sure you need classes? I would have needed more than two days to make such an elegant dessert. I am sure everyone was impressed.

Have a fantastic year ahead Carol, thanks for being part of my blogging world.

xx Nora

SIG said...

That is truly a gorgeous meal you had, and not forgetting the gorgeous desserts. I would like to know more about that polenta cookie. A belated happy birthday to Chloe. I see she is a Capricorn just like my girl. Everyone is dressed in white... how lovely.

daphne said...

what a lovely gathering! warm and cosy. Great idea on the pot luck. Oh oh! and the cakes look amazing! baking and cooking lessons sound exciting!! Cheers to 2008!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Carol.., wow your Christmas buffet look so lovely, and the presentation too, beautiful!! Must teach me how to make the Gianduja Mousse Torte. I am sooo looking forward to your cooking and baking class, do count me in...!!!

Erica Indradjaja

tigerfish said...

It's so heartwarming to see a family party/gathering with big gorgeous smiles and delicious food!
Happy New Year once again!

Joy said...

People must love going to your place during the holidays! I could probably eat 3 of this in one sitting.

Hope you enjoyed your Christmas and New Year celebrations, Carol!

Please go to The Goddess In You where I have a meme for you :D

The Goddess In You
Norwich Daily Photo
Your Love Coach

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Oh, Carol, what an elegant way to ring in the new year.

Mandy said...

wow, I wish I was there to try the gianduja mousse torte. They look absolutely delicious.
All the best for the baking and cooking class,it sounds so exciting!

Chibog in Chief said...

oh dear carol, thank you for inviting us to have a peep in this celebration!!! the food look all delicious!! i agree with you on doing a pot-luck thing, i often do the same...

what a lovely daughters you've got!! happy new year to you and more blessings to come for 2008!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year !

ooh ... I love poh pia...I'm definitely going to ask my mom to cook some when I'm back for CNY :)

Love your gianduja mousse torte.

thwany said...

you sure have some lucky family and friends- i'd love to be invited a wonderful epicurean holiday event like that!

Dwiana P said...

Carol, what a great time you have with your family. All the food look so delish! If you invite me, I would love to come to your party - with all kind of great food and friendly people:)

Dwiana P said...

Carol........ do you know that you are one of the DMBLGIT dec07 winner? I just found it out. Congratulation!!!

Mansi said...

Oh My God!! you made that fabulous cake Carol!! its brilliant:) I wish I could take some classes from you girl!

looks like you all had a great time! wish you a very happy and fabulous 2008!!

btw, if you have a veg dish somewhere in your archive, do send it in for my Game Night Party event (details on my blog:)) I'd Love to have your entry:)

Anonymous said...

Carol...T_T the foods looks so yummmyyyyyy huaaaaaa me want me want....
Carol congratulation for the baking and cooking clases that you will start i really can't wait to join the clases.....T_T
Carol thank you so much for the ginger bread photo....mmmuuaaahhhh
GBU and family always

Anonymous said...

Happy belated birthday to your blog and Chloe! That torte is so inspiring, where's the recipe from? If I have the book in my collection, I'm definitely trying it. Popiah! We're having that for CNY soon!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

Looks like you had a wonderful holiday season with family. I love the idea of having a potluck for Christmas. It makes it so much easier on the cooks! The Nutella/hazelnut mousse sounds devine. I will just have to be happy with the photos and imagine the dessert itself. I have had too many sweets over the holidays already!!!

Anonymous said...

You look beautiful, your children look beautiful, your food looks beautiful!

How wonderful, thank you for sharing.

I am going to give the polenta cookies a whirl, they look so nice. Of course, your superb photos mean I can almost taste them... if that makes sense :)

All the very best for 2008. Congratulations on your study opportunity.

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