It’s that time of year when groups gather to celebrate. It often involves bringing a plate to share with others. It’s one of those Aussie customs you grow up with. Interestingly, if you haven’t grown up with the concept, the meaning can be a bit confusing. (Here’s an interesting post from Bob in Oz about the concept from a newcomer’s perspective).
Aussies enjoy casual dining, and when everyone brings something to contribute, it makes it simple and easy. Depending on the occasion, this might mean snacks, dessert, or even a salad/meat dish. Most often with celebrations involving kids, “bring a plate” means a sweet or savoury snack plate to contribute to a gathering.
This time of year can be extremely busy, and having simple food ideas up your sleeve for different occasions is useful. In partnership with Woolworths, I’ve put together six simple bring a plate ideas.
1. Festive Savoury or Sweet Biscuit Plate
Woolies have an extensive Christmas range this year, including these festive Savoury Biscuitsand Sweet Biscuits. This is great for when you don’t have a lot of time and need to whip something together.
Add cheese blocks and vegetables with the savoury platter.
Add a range of festive sweet biscuits to a plate.
2. Santa in a Pond
This festive take on Frog in a Pond is a HUGE hit with kids. It’s a little more time intensive (especially if you want to do coloured strip layers), but they are super simple to make. This recipe makes 8, however it would be easy to use a smaller container and make 12-16 serves.
What you need
Woolworths essentials plastic wine glasses (optional, or use regular glasses)
2 x packets of Woolworths Select Strawberry Jelly Crystals
2 x packets of Woolworths Select Lime Jelly Crystals
Cadbury Santa/Cadbury Elf Chocolates (Cadbury also have tree shaped chocolate)
For detailed tips for putting this together, click here.
3. Easy Biscuits Wreaths
If the kids want to get involved in making Christmas cookies, but you need it to be easy, try these simple biscuit wreaths.
What you need
- Arnott’s Rice Cookies
- Christmas m&ms
- Icing (I used pre-made Dr Oetker Designer Icing that can be piped straight on the biscuits)
Simply use icing to attach red and green m&ms to the biscuit.
4. Watermelon Christmas Trees
It’s good to provide healthy options too. Watermelon Christmas trees are easy and you can either serve them fresh or put them in the freezer for a frozen treat.
It’s all in how you cut the watermelon, and I’ve included step-by-step images below:
- Cut the watermelon in half, lengthways (not across the middle).
- Take the half and cut in half again, lengthways.
- Take the quarter piece and cut in half again, lengthways.
- Then cut the watermelon strip into triangle shapes.
- Make two cuts in the centre in the skin section of the triangle piece (a couple of centimetres apart)
- Cut excess skin away from the tree stem.
Christmas Fairy Bread
Make this Aussie classic festive by placing the fairy bread on your plate in the shape of a tree. Use a star cookie cutter to cut the bread for the top.
What you need
- Fresh white bread
- Star Cookie Cutter
- 100s & 1000s
6. Brandy Snap Baskets
I saw these Brandy Snap Baskets at my local Woolies and thought I would give them a try. They were amazing! If you need to bring a dessert, pre-whip the cream, and have fresh or frozen fruit ready. I used Frozen Cherries (so-so good) and Frozen Blueberries. Just before serving, slap it all together. Too easy.
Tip: It’s handy to keep frozen fruit in the freezer for those last minute summer desserts.
Bring on the summer gatherings!