Inspired by the wonderful food critic and writer Roger Wolfson, who often tells us the importance of staying outside of our comfort zone, this year I have decided to go slightly wild with my choices for Christmas dinner. We will be doing duck instead of turkey, that I suppose ought to be the first thing to mention here, yet beyond this I have found a few recipes, and invented a couple more, which I think could work very well this Christmas and I intend to give them my very best effort.
And so, here are a couple of the dishes which I will be trying for this Christmas dinner, perhaps they may inspire you, or revolt, naturally I’m hoping for the former.
Balsamic Figs and Sprouts
No matter which side of the sprout loving fence you happen to fall on, there is always something novel that can be done with them to spice them up a little. To this end I plan to mix those little critters with some fresh figs and some red grapes. The plan is to drizzle them in oil to loosen them up and then roast them for around 40 minutes. After they are well roasted and ready to go, I’m going to drizzle balsamic vinegar on and serve. The end result should be a sort of sticky and sweet dish with the earthiness of those sprouts firing through.
Stuffing Choice, Hazelnut, Orange and Pancetta
I am having a mildly friendly stuffing battle with a very dear friend of mine this year and the weapon which I have chosen is orange, hazelnut and pancetta. I have also found a delightful little bakery which sells delicious bread, which I shall be drying out and then crumbling up into crumbs, something which I have decided not to tell the bakery. The plan is then to mix up onion, garlic, butter and sage with the 3 headliners – the orange will be zest only, and then see how it all comes together with a little bit of egg and some time in the oven.
Prawn cocktail was my usual go-to starter, a lovely simple option which could be knocked up in no time at all. Given that I have a couple of people at the table this year who are allergic, I felt it better to switch up the starter and avoid the ambulance visit. And so I have settled on camembert, equally as simple I assume, which will see the little wooden pot go into the oven with some basil leaves, and then served up with celery and crusty bread. The theme may lose out with such a starter, but I think it’ll be easy and most importantly, pretty darn tasty.
These are my three bold moves for this Christmas dinner and of course the hope is always that everything goes swimmingly, something which I can’t promise, but I most certainly hope for. What will be going on your list for Christmas dinner this year?