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A very Nigella Christmas
Traditional Christmas dinner
Member Name: europe-chick
Traditional Christmas dinner
Date: 09/12/12, updated on 09/12/12 (188 review reads)
Advantages: gorgeous food!
Disadvantages: maybe we drink too much!
9 times out of 10 it's just the two of on Christmas Day. We both have slightly disfunctional families (doesn't everyone to a certain extent!!), and our families don't actually get on with one another. So it's just easier to spend Christmas Day just the two of us, and then visit our respective families for 'Christmas dinner' again on a different day over the Christmas period. To be honest I really like our little tradition of spending Christmas dinner on our own, we can do what we want when we want, and it's really nice and cosy just the two of us.
Our traditional Christmas always starts on Christmas Eve when we have Nigella's Vodka Marinated Steak for dinner, served with new potatoes tossed in butter and sprinkled with fresh dill, and a tomatoe and red onion salad. We accompany this with a bottle of pink Champagne, and we follow this with Nigella's Snow Flecked Chocolate Brownies served with lashings of fresh whipped cream.
Nigella's Vodka Marinated Steak is divine, the steak is marinated in Vodka (obviously!), and it is so tender and just falls apart on the plate and in your mouth - you don't even need to chew it it's that tender.
Nigella's Snow Flecked Chocolate Brownies are chocolate brownies with white chocolate chips to represent the snow flakes, these are moist chewy and delicious.
On Christmas Day itself we always start the day with Champagne and pre-bought M&S croissants, I serve the croissants with Lurpak butter and homemade jam, this years jam is cranberry jelly - which I've already made. It's a fairly light breakfast so as not to overshadow the Christmas lunch itself, but it's substantial enough to stop us scoffing all of the Christmas chocs and then not wanting our Christmas dinner as we feel slightly sick! We always eat our breakfast in front of the Christmas tree and roaring open fire in the living room, and so it always feels really Christmassy and festive.
Now on to the main event - Christmas Lunch or Christmas Dinner, I guess it's lunch or dinner depending what time you choose to serve it at. We normally have our Christmas Dinner at around 4pm. I don't serve a starter as the dinner itself is more than enough food!
Our Christmas dinner always consists of:
Turkey - I buy a smallish turkey as it's just the two of us, but even so we will still end up eating turkey leftovers for a good week!
Stuffing - I don't stuff my turkey with the stuffing, I bake it separately, I always make Nigella's gingerbread stuffing, which is made using a pre-bought ginger cake rather than breadcrumbs, I always use McVitie's Jamaica Ginger Cake for this.
Pigs in Blankets - I just buy these from M&S and pop them in the oven, quick and easy, delicious too!
Roast potatoes - I use Nigella's recipe for roasties, I always use King Edward potatoes, and Nigella's secret ingredient is semolina, when you've par-boiled your potatoes toss them in a spoonful or two of semolina to make them crisp up wonderfully, I always roast them in goose fat.
Parsnips and Carrots - I roast my parsnips along with my carrots in olive oil and maple syrup, the maple syrup gives them a 'smoky sweet' flavour rather than a 'sweet sweet' flavour that you get when you roast them in honey.
Sprouts - I adore sprouts, in fact I think that they're my favourite vegetable, I was the weird kid in the supermarket always asking my mum if we were having sprouts for tea tonight! I normally pan fry my sprouts with pancetta, however this year I'm going to try roasting them in olive oil and maple syrup alongside my parsnips and carrots instead.
Cranberry Sauce - I always make my own cranberry sauce, it tastes so much better than the shop bought jars, it's really quick and easy to do, and I always add a good glugg of Cointreau to my cranberry sauce for a boozy alcoholic kick.
Gravy - I normally ring my mum at this point as my gravy almost always goes wrong! I do use the turkey juices and make my own gravy, but it can be a bit hit and miss so I will always have some Bisto turkey gravy granules in just in case! If I do end up using the Bisto granules then I find that adding red wine makes the gravy taste much more 'home made'.
And that's it for the Christmas Dinner! My husband is in charge of the wine to accompany our Christmas dinner, and we will have a couple of bottles of red wine over dinner. Christmas dinner is always eaten in the dining room, but we do normally eat dessert in front of the fire in the living room again.
For dessert I always make a 'posh' trifle, we always had a trifle at Christmas when I was little, and I like the idea of carrying on with this, but I do jazz my trifles up a bit. This year my trifle is going to consist of a McVitie's Jamaica Ginger Cake base with Cointreau poured over to soak into the ginger cake, then topped with a layer of passion fruit pulp and home made passion fruit curd, then topped with a carton of ready made custard from M&S (the premium one), then finally topped with lashings of fresh thick whipped cream and a combination of white, milk and dark chocolate shavings - yum!
If we get peckish later then there's always a fridge full of chocolate, fruit, biscuits, cheese etc to snack on. There's also always a wide range of spirits and mixers in to make cocktails later on. I always end up scoffing a tonne of chocolates throughout the evening as we maybe watch a Christmas film or two, I also always end up opening more red wine too, so by the end of the day we've normally drank 3 or 4 bottles between us!
Summary: A very Nigella Christmas