East Aurora, NY Level 1
Hello all, for those of you who celebrate Christmas, and those of you who are also responsible for the cooking of the traditional Christmas meal, what are your plans for Christmas lunch or dinner?
What is traditional in your country and do you feel it's best to stick to that, or do you go "off piste" and do something different?
I tend to stick to traditional, but that doesn't mean turkey. Here in the UK, most people think of a roast turkey as the required main course for a Christmas meal, but actually, that is an imported American tradition. Goose would be a far more traditional British option, but not many people go for that anymore (expensive!). I don't actually know anyone that loves turkey, so I usually go for a different bird.
What if you are vegetarian or vegan? Last year, due to Christmas kind of being cancelled here in London, I spent it with my one housemate who was officially a pescatarian (although mostly ate vegan food) so I had to get creative. It turns out better than I thought.
Anyway, I am rather late in planning the Christmas meal I am shortly to cook for my family. We are talking about people from different cultures who have very different preferences. Ideas and inspiration would be greatly appreciated.
Wow, good effort by your mum. No one in my family likes Xmas pudding or Xmas cake, so I don't bother with them anymore. No one even likes mince pies. Desert is always the trickiest part of this meal. I still haven't decided what I am making!
I love a prawn cocktail too!
I made garlic and herb chicken and the duck tagine with clementines.
I didn't make the truffle parsnip brioche thingy, but I might still make it just to see what it's like, as I have so many parsnips still!
For sides, I went with roast potatoes with sage, honey and black pepper roasted parsnips and carrots, the sizzled Brussel sprouts with pistachios and pomegranate (below) and vegan stuffing balls.
There were a few other things that I didn't end up making in the end because you kind of need to eat them as soon as they are ready. The food got packed up for my family.
Did you have Xmas with your family and your usual traditional meal?
So, here are some "off piste" recipes that I am considering as alternatives to this year's Christmas dinner, considering not all my guests are used to the usual British fair.
A Moroccan inspired Duck Tagine with clementines:
A different take on the parsnip side (usually do them honey glazed). This is a truffled parsnip brioche pudding with hazelnut and thyme butter:
A bit adventurous, but what do you think?
I think that truffle (like oysters) is one of those acquired tastes that people either love or hate but it will be just one of several sides, so people can take it or leave it as they please. I think I have enough parsnips to do the more traditional version too as a different option. I am still not sure about the oyster complaint as no one was forced to eat them!
It's often good to whip up some homemade ice-cream or Gelato.... it's a lot easier than people realise..
Meanwhile down under in New Zealand, most people have Christmas meals out side in the fresh air and Summer sun.
Some people have traditional foods from their country of origin, others a mixture.
They are nice if one cuts out the sugar dominance, and tops them with an abundance of fresh fruits in season like cherries, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries some freshly whipped cream and / or icecream produced from our cows on the farms of New Zealand.
Remember Desserts were created as Treat foods.
@Mark116, it's good for the brain to convert different measurements we use across the world.
To make smaller or larger portions, just divide or multiply them along with cooking times.
There's some fabulous traditional and simple recipes using only a handful of ingredients in Papers Past NZ archives as there is likely to be in one's own country newspaper archives.
Venison is yum, one of my favourite meats.
Roasted Persimmons are a good alternative to apricots with meat.
@Helen427 and community friends our Christmas lunch this year is a Prawn (shrimp on the barbeque) with garlic and butter and fresh fruit to follow. Our Christmas day usually starts with a cooked breakfast and when all the family are here for the lunch or evening gathering is is a cold selection with cold ham, chicken, prawns and sometimes crayfish (lobster). A selection of different salads and everyone serve themselves (less waste).
Deserts after a break is fresh fruit and cheese platters, pavlova, triffle, plum pudding but we dont put the alcohol flame on as this is a bit "posh" for us and why would you burn the alcohol when you can drink it.
That sounds so delicious. I used to live in Cape Town, where they are big on barbecues too, but I only remember having the traditional Christmas lunch of turkey and all the trimmings. Barbecued prawns sound like an amazing alternative.
@Laurelle3 Ok, I am hungry now .D it sounds delicious.
Just curious... does Santa wear a bathing suit and arrives on a ski jet in Australia? 🙂
Your description of pavlova reminds me of a traditional British summertime dessert called Eaton Mess. Have you heard of it?
Yes, the above photo shows a take on Eton Mess with cake, but traditionally, there's no cake, just meringues, strawberries and whipped cream, although people often add other summer berries (and in the example below looks like they have added strawberry compote). Then it's all just thrown together, hence the 'mess' part of the name.
That photo is not so 'messy'. It can definitely be done much more easily if you don't want it to look pristine.
I will definitely whip it up for you when you come to stay with me 🙂