This Christmas Eve, we are celebrating with a few of our dear friends. A chance to chat over a special meal, drink a cocktail or two and swap gifts. Christmas Eve needs to be a special affair, but a light one, nothing too heavy to digest as we have a huge feast coming up the following day.
A couple of our friends are vegetarian, so this means forgoing our usual fish pie for supper, so in search of something suitable that is also special, I discovered this recipe from Beth Kirby. A mushroom and Camembert pie. Beth’s recipe uses fennel and sherry which I chose to opt out, instead I used gin and kept it purely mushroom. Still delicious, and easy to make too.
So if you are looking for something delicious and vegetarian to serve over the festive season, then read on. It can be a lovely dish for Solstice celebrations or New Years day…
Having friends round is the perfect chance for me to get my styling on. There is nothing more satisfying, to me, than pottering around making a table pretty. This year I am using these beautiful blue/grey Halo plates from Denby teaming them with grey checked napkins from and gold cutlery from for a touch of festive bling.
Earlier in the week I had been foraging greenery to decorate the table. Nothing screams Christmas to me than fronds of ivy and fir. Just simply laid on the table around the crockery, for a loose, informal arrangement.
As a little flourish to each place setting I tied sprigs of fresh thyme with a gold coloured velvet ribbon. And as it is a party, gold glitter crowns for us to wear. These are from Anthropologie.
Mushroom & Camembert Pie
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- a large knob of unsalted butter
- a bunch fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped
- 2 medium shallots, diced
- 3 medium cloves garlic, minced
- 1.5 lbs mixed mushrooms, cleaned, stemmed, & roughly chopped
- sea salt & freshly ground black pepper to season
- a good glug of gin
- 2 tbsp cup flour
- 1/2 pint whole milk
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 100g camembert, rind removed, cut into cubes
- 1 sheet of fresh puff pastry (I use shop bought)
- 1 whole egg, lightly whisked, for brushing
- Thyme sprigs for garnish (optional)
- Heat oven to 400 F/200 C.
- Heat butter and oil in a an oven proof dish over medium heat. I am using my Denby Halo shallow cast iron dish which is brilliant for this recipe. Cook thyme, shallot, garlic and mushrooms with the salt and pepper until the mushrooms just start to release their liquid, about 5-10 minutes.
- Add the gin and cook until almost all of it evaporates. Stir in the mustard. Add the flour, and stir until none is visible. Whisk in the milk and simmer until it starts to thicken, then whisk in the cheese until melted.
- Once the cheese has melted turn off the heat and allow it to cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile roll out the pastry to fit your dish. Once cool, top the dish with the pastry and trim to a 1″ overhang. Tuck the overhang in, cut a vent in the stop, brush with egg, add any further decoration you wish. I cut a star out of the left over pastry.
- Bake on a sheet tray (to catch any sauce that bubbles over) 30 minutes or until puffed, deep golden brown, and pastry is completely cooked through.
- Note: You can make this ahead the day before. Simply top with the pastry and then cover. Do not brush with the egg wash until right before baking. It can also be made in about 8 individual ramekins.
Serve this pie with a sprightly salad or some of your favourite greens. I served kalets (kale tops) which have a nutty crunch.
recipe adapted from Local Milk.
Whilst the pie is in the oven, I set to making something to drink. It has to be a fizz based cocktail, so looking through recipes on Pinterest I came across a plum and thyme smash fizz (keeping with the thyme flavours).
Thyme & Plum smash fizz
- 2 plums skinned and chopped, plus 1 extra to slice thinly to garnish
- a bunch of fresh thyme
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- sugar syrup
- 1 bottle of Prosecco
- ice to serve
- muddle the chopped plums, thyme and lemon juice together
- pop into a cocktail shaker with a couple of cubes of ice
- add the sugar syrup and shake well.
- pour over ice in the glass (I am using the Denby lotus crystal wine glasses)
- top with prosecco and garnish with slices of plum and fresh thyme
Whilst our guests were enjoying a glass of fizz, I could get the pie out of the oven and place it on the table.
This mushroom & camembert pie can be made ahead, just add the pastry right before you bake it in the oven. Of course, this isn’t Christmas Eve supper, I made it for our weekend supper… a dry run as it were. But we shall be recreating this on December 24th.
Collaboration Note: This post was written in collaboration with Denby who provided the crockery, oven ware and glasses for our meal. Thank you for supporting the posts that make this blog possible.