To share and love: Forget the roast goose! Star chef Haya Molcho's Christmas menu takes you to the Middle East

Christmas is the festival of love and as is well known, the way to love is through the stomach.

To share and love: Forget the roast goose! Star chef Haya Molcho's Christmas menu takes you to the Middle East

Christmas is the festival of love and as is well known, the way to love is through the stomach. One who knows how to pamper loved ones with soul food and conjure up emotions in the meal is the scene chef Haya Molcho from the Levant. Your motor is the family. "We always had an open house, the door is never closed," she told us in an interview. Eating is done in community, with the family, with many friends and many, many dishes that are distributed on the table. You can taste from all bowls and of course you can also nibble from the neighboring plate, because sharing connects. She also recommends this concept for Christmas.

For the star, she has put together a Christmas menu that competes with the traditional roast duck and goose - a Middle Eastern grilled chicken. The icing on the cake is the mascarpone mousse with port wine for dessert. These are two dishes that can be easily modified and supplemented according to the guests' preferences. Her tip: lots of side dishes. "These make it easier. So there's something for everyone. A long table, many different and colorful plates, good company - that's a real feast and the greatest gift," says Haya Molcho.

Ingredients for 4 servings

Grilled Chicken

800g chicken thighs, skinless, boneless30g coriander, plucked20g mint, plucked10g green chilli with seeds8g water1/2 tsp red chilli powder1 pinch of ras el hanout1 tsp pickled mango1 tsp cumin1/2 tsp turmericJuice of 1/2 lemon3 tsp Salt20 g of sunflower oil

Ras el Neni Curry

240 g onions 100 g tomatoes 8 g garlic 8 g ginger 40 g sunflower oil 6 g ras el hanout 2 g red chili powder 40 g tomato paste 120 g water 6 g salt

Sumac Onions

80g onions 6g parsley 6g olive oil 6g lemon juice, freshly squeezed 1 pinch of salt 2g sumac

For serving

160 g canned chickpeas, drained160 g baby spinach40 g whipped creamCoriander, plucked

Clean and pat dry the chicken thighs. In a blender, blend all of the remaining chicken ingredients except for the oil into a fine paste. Finally, slowly pour in the oil until an emulsion forms. Marinate the chicken thighs in the paste and leave covered in the fridge overnight.

For the Ras el Neni curry, peel and halve the onions and cut into fine cubes. Remove the stalk from the tomatoes and chop roughly. Peel and finely grate the garlic and ginger. Sweat onion cubes in sunflower oil until translucent. Add the garlic, ginger and ras el hanout and sweat for 20 seconds while stirring. Add the remaining ingredients and let the curry simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes. Finely puree in the blender.

For the sumac onions, peel and halve the onions and cut into 0.5 cm strips. Finely chop the parsley. Mix all the ingredients for the sumac onions together thoroughly.

Preheat oven to 220°C fan oven. Roast the marinated chicken thighs, skin-side up, in the oven for about 15 minutes. Slowly heat the Ras el Neni curry with chickpeas and baby spinach. Place the curry mixture on a plate. Cut the chicken thighs into 1 cm wide slices and arrange on top. Pour cream in blobs on top. Garnish the chicken slices with sumac onions and coriander.

Tip: A tabuleh with cucumber, parsley, mint, red onion and lemon juice goes well with this.

Ingredients for 4 servings


80 g Cantucci 40 g port wine (red or white as desired) 200 g mascarpone 130 g cream 50 g sugar Mark of 1/4 vanilla bean

For serving

Cocoa powder

Place Cantucci on a flat baking sheet. Pour the port wine over the cantucci and leave to stand for 5-10 minutes. Place the mascarpone, heavy cream, sugar and vanilla seeds in the bowl of the stand mixer. Hit at low speed first. When all the ingredients have combined, increase the speed until you get a creamy consistency. Slowly fold in the soaked cantucci to create layers. Place the mascarpone mousse in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

To serve, scoop out dumplings from the mousse with a large spoon and place on plates. Sprinkle cocoa powder on top through a sieve.

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