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Beef & LETTUCE CUPS; canapes There's no reason to miss out on these bite-size beautiesWhat would the festivities be without the odd little tipple?

MAKES 16 READY IN 15 MINUTES INGREDIENTS | 500g lean frying steaks, all visible fat removed | 4 level tbsp teriyaki marinade | 1tsp very finely chopped red chilli, plus extra slivers to serve | 1cm piece root ginger, peeled and grated | 1 garlic clove, peeled and grated | 1 cucumber, halved, deseeded and finely diced | 2tbsp each of finely chopped coriander and mint | Juice of 1 large lime | Salt and freshly ground black pepper | Low-calorie cooking spray | 16 little gem lettuce leaves, separated | Spring onion slivers, to serve METHOD 1 Put the steaks between 2 sheets of cling film and beat with a rolling pin until they're half of their original thickness. Then slice the steak very thinly and place in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the teriyaki marinade, red chilli, ginger and garlic, then pour it over the beef and toss to coat. Marinate for 30 minutes.

2 Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix the cucumber, chopped herbs and lime juice. Season well and set aside. Spray a large frying pan with the low-calorie cooking spray and place over a high heat. When hot, fry the steak slices for 2 minutes for rare to medium or 3 minutes for well done, turning the slices halfway through.

3 Arrange the lettuce leaves on two serving platters. Spoon the cucumber mixture into the lettuce leaves, top with the seared beef, then sprinkle with the red chilli and spring onion slivers.

CHAMPAGNE JELLY SHOTS MAKES 8 READY IN ABOUT 20 MINUTES INGREDIENTS | 2 sheets of leaf gelatine | 500ml champagne or sparkling white wine | 2tsp sweetener | Edible gold leaf, to decorate (optional) METHOD 1 Place the gelatine in a bowl of cold water for 10-12 minutes until softened. Heat 100ml of the champagne or sparkling wine in a pan with the sweetener.

2 Remove the gelatine from the water, squeeze out any excess liquid, and add it to the champagne, stirring until it has dissolved. Allow to cool, then pour in the rest of the champagne and stir to mix.

3 Pour the jelly into a shallow baking tray and chill for 3-4 hours or until set. Remove from the fridge, cut it into pieces and spoon into eight chilled shot glasses. Decorate with edible gold leaf for an extra special touch.

CHRISTMAS COCKTAILS MULLED WINE SERVES 8 READY IN 20 MINUTES INGREDIENTS | 75cl (750ml) bottle red wine | 1tbsp brandy or rum | Grated zest and juice of half an unwaxed lemon | 1 cinnamon stick, plus extra sticks to serve (optional) | 2 cloves | A pinch of freshly grated nutmeg | 2 level tsp brown sugar | Half an orange, thinly sliced, for decoration METHOD 1 Pour the wine into a pan. Add 300ml of water, the brandy or rum, lemon zest and juice, spices and sugar. Stir over a low heat until the wine is hot and the sugar has dissolved - don't let it boil.

2 Transfer the wine to a heatproof jug and float the orange slices on top. Serve in heatproof glasses with a cinnamon stick, if you like.

LIME SPRITZER SERVES 8 READY IN 5 MINUTES INGREDIENTS | 3 limes, thinly sliced | 400ml dry white wine | 650ml sparkling water | 3tbsp ginger cordial | Ice cubes, to serve METHOD 1 Put the lime slices in a large jug, pour in the white wine, sparkling water and ginger cordial, stir and chill.

into glasses and serve with ice.

2Pour FESTIVE FRUIT PUNCH SERVES 8 READY IN 15 MINUTES INGREDIENTS | 300ml unsweetened apple juice | 150ml cranberry juice | 150ml mango juice | 500ml low-calorie tonic water or soda water | 250g seedless grapes (a mix of colours will look great) | Ice cubes or crushed ice, to serve METHOD 1 Chill all the fruit juices and the tonic or soda water in the fridge. Thread the grapes onto eight cocktail sticks, set aside.

2 Pour the fruit juices and the tonic or soda water into a large jug, stir well and add plenty of ice. Pour the punch into glasses and top each one with a grape stick to serve.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Nov 20, 2016

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