Alongside the presents, decorations, and festive films, delicious food is without a doubt one of the highlights of Christmas Day. While roast turkey and all the trimmings symbolises the hallmark of Christmas for many people,there are so many other exciting variations of festive foods out there to try. If you fancy shaking up the tradition this year, check out our seven Christmas dinner ideas from around the world for some inspiration.
First up, we’re heading to Aus for some festive food inspo. Fancy adding something different into the mix this year? Do it in true Aussie style with a selection of seafood, cold meats, and fruit. Australian Christmas cuisine means a whole host of seasonal summer dishes and fresh, local ingredients. From mangoes to salad, roast chicken to cherries, all the foods to complement the hot climate can be found on the menu. Right at the top of the list is seafood, and lots of it. Popular dishes include smoked oysters and chargrilled prawns. Delicious!
While most of us are tucked up in bed, eagerly awaiting the arrival of Father Christmas, midnight in Costa Rica constitutes the prime time when many families sit down to eat their festive meal. A traditional Costa Rican Christmas dinner consists of plates full of tamales. While each family is said to have its own secret recipe usinga unique blend of ingredients, the twofundamentalelements of tamales are a corn-based dough andfillings likebeef, cheese, and chicken. This year, consider mixing up your Christmas Eve spread with some delicious tamales. Lightweight and tasty, they’ll go down a treat with a nice glass of bubbly. Get the family together and have some fun trying out a new recipe. And who knows, it might become a new Christmas favourite!
In Finland, Christmas dinner is traditionally served on the 24th of December. Joulupyta, translated as Yule Table, is the name given to the foods eaten throughout the festive period. Most Finns would agree that slow-baked ham topped with homemade mustard is the star of the show, withsteaming casserolein at close second. Favoured by many for its sheer convenience, a casserole can be prepared a couple of days in advance, meaning less stress for the Christmas dinner host or hostess. Go ahead and substitute some traditional Finnish winter cuisine into your Christmas Day feast this year.
This year, stray away from the turkey and stuffing and go gourmet instead. The perfect way to celebrate the festivities with a group of friends, the Dutch Christmas tradition of gourmetten consists of each person grillingfoods likefish, sausage, and vegetablesat the table with their own individual pan and spoon. It’s a prolonged, relaxed process, which means plenty of time for chatting and filling up the glasses. Swap out your classic dinnerware and make room for some raclette pans this Christmas!
A typical Portuguese Christmas dinner looks like Bacalhau com todos, a tasty meal consisting of codfish served with boiled potatoes, cabbage and eggs. But it’s the sweet treats that follow that constitute the main attraction. This year, swap out the Christmas pud for some pastries and desserts instead. Rabanadas, slices of French toast soaked in egg and milk, should definitely have a place alongside the Christmas crackers. Or, if you’re partial to a hot bowl of rice pudding, give arroz doce a try. To top it all off, tuck into a slice of Portuguese king cake, a sweet, fluffy bread adorned with nuts and fruit.
Add a little Greek flavour to your Christmas dinner this year with a popular dessert dish. Found on dinner tables right the way through December in Greece, melomakarona, or Christmas honey cookies, are moist and flavourful baked goods made up of flour, honey, and syrup. Soft, fluffy and super easy to bake, these delicious treats will fill your home with fabulous Christmassy scents such as orange and cinnamon. A classic sweet loved by all, wash yours down with a steaming mug of hot chocolate and stick on a festive film.
While there are many delicious Russian Christmas dishes to savour, top of the list is Olivier salad. The perfect meal to enjoy with a slice of bread and several glasses of wine, this delightful dish is made up of a tasty blend of boiled meat and potatoes, eggs, carrots, and pickles. Consider trying this salad as a wind-down meal on Boxing Day.
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