Christmas Dips and more

Tzatziki Dip
½ a large cucumber
2 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons quality extra virgin olive oil
1 x 500g tub of strained Greek yoghurt
1 small bunch of fresh dill
a few sprigs of fresh mint
1 lemon

Cut the cucumber in half and scrape the seeds out then finely grate. Add some salt and put in a sieve to drain for a few hours or overnight in fridge.
Grate or finely chop garlic and add to oil and let rest for a few hours to mellow out the harshness.
Once the liquid has drained from cucumber, add the garlic and oil and then add to yoghurt and stir.
Finely chop dill and mint, add to mixture with a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon juice. Combine all ingredients ready to serve.
Cut up fresh veg like, celery, carrots, capsicum, cucumber or warmed pitta bread to serve.

1 tin of chickpeas
1 clove of crushed garlic
1 tablespoon tahini
1 lemon squeezed
1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

Empty tin of chickpeas into a sieve and rinse with water.
Add finely crush garlic and chickpeas, tahini, juice of a lemon, oil and a pinch of salt and blend in food processor and smooth. Use spatula to scrape down sides and add water if needed to make smooth.
Add salt and pepper or paprika to garnish and for taste.
Cut up fresh veg like, celery, carrots, capsicum, cucumber or warmed pitta bread to serve.

Sage & Blueberry Gin Fizz

Serves 7 cups

1.5 cups frozen blueberries
2/3 cups fresh lemon juice
6 cups sparkling water
½ cup packed fresh sage leaves
2.5 cups gin
¼ cup sugar

In a medium sized pot over medium high heat, combine frozen blueberries, lemon juice and water. Stir until sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to a simmer.
Muddle berries well, mashing them in the pot. Add the sage. Simmer for 1-2 minutes.
Remove from stove and let sit overnight or for several hours (the longer it sits the more the sage will come through).
Strain the blueberry mixture, pressing down hard on the berries with a muddler or back of big spoon. Allowing them to release their colourful juice.
Place blueberry sage syrup in a large punch bowl or glass beverage container.
Add gin and garnish with  few sage leaves and lemon slices.



30ml Gin
Tonic dash
Soda dash

Add gin, ice, squeeze of lime into a glass and top with half tonic and half soda.

Lychee Martinee

Serves 2

4 canned lychees in syrup
150ml good vodka
Splash of dry vermouth

Put 2 lychees into freezer for 20mins to chill
Add the remaining lychees into a cocktail shaker, along with a handful of ice, a splash of the lychee syrup from can, the vodka and the vermouth. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds and then strain into cocktail glasses.

This is a healthy, low calorie cocktail.