Subverting the Culinary Norms of Christmas
If you're someone that doesn’t like to necessarily do things by the book, then why not throw the book out completely? Specifically, why not throw that Christmas cookbook out? You know the one, the one that you swear by year in, year out — chuck it out! And, when you have chucked it out, make sure to take heed of the advice below that will teach you exactly how to subvert the culinary norms of Christmas.
You can use the BBQ to cook Christmas dinner… seriously
If you find yourself pining for the taste of summer, or at least a remnant of the taste of summer, during the cold winter months then why not embrace the BBQ life this Christmas? Why not dig your summer BBQ out from the shed, get it some professional and reputable BBQ grill repair if it isn’t up to standard required, and get BBQing your Christmas dinner! By doing so you might just find yourself changing your Christmas dinners forever.
When it comes to BBQing your Christmas dinner, is there anywhere that you can start other than with the turkey? The turkey is the staple of the Christmas dinner, without the turkey the Christmas dinner would just be, well, dinner. So, start with the turkey, and when it comes to doing so make sure you follow the stonewall advice laid out here. This advice includes sitting the turkey in 10 litres of water and 800g of salt for 13 hours (probably overnight), smothering the turkey in lemon, smearing it in butter and making sure your BBQ coal is white hot when you begin the cooking process.
In the parts of the world where it is summer and not winter over the festive period, like Australia and New Zealand, the BBQ is always lit up at Christmas time. So, if trying another country’s traditional Christmas dish is how you want to subvert the culinary norms this Christmas, then get that BBQ of yours out of retirement!
And, that brings us on to our next point…
Go international with your Christmas dinner
Your nation’s favourite Christmas dinner isn’t the only Christmas dinner on the planet, you know. No, there are a host of different dinners that people all over the world tuck into over the holiday season, because most nations have their own take on what constitutes as the perfect Christmas dinner.
For instance, if you are feeling particularly French at any point over the fast approaching festive period, then why not give Buche de Noe a go? This is a Francais treat that is traditionally served just as the clock strikes midnight on Christmas day (typically after midnight mass on Christmas Eve) but, don’t worry, you can give this sweet treat a go without having to wait up all night as it makes for the perfect after dinner pudding. You see, this is, for all intents and purposes, a sponge can that is topped with powdered sugar. And, if you want any more evidence as to why this sweet treat constitutes as a festive treat, then look no further than its name: when translated into English it reads ‘yule log’.
Or, if you want something more filling than just a glorified sponge cake this Christmas then why not opt for the Finnish delicacy known as joulupöytä? This is, quite literally, a smorgasbord of all the things Finnish families love up and down that beautiful country. It’s standout foods include: mustard ham, different types of fish and a casserole dish that constitutes mainly of liver and raisins. So, as you can see, this dish is probably best suited to somebody who is very much interested and comfortable with eating meats.
And another nation that very much embraces the meat eating life at Christmas is Argentina. Yes, in Argentina meat is very much a staple of the xmas diet, but it is not turkey that has the mouths of Argentinians watering. No, it is steak, specifically a dish known as ninos nnvuettas. In this dish there can be found squares of steak that are filled with — wait for it — eggs, different spices and onions that are then baked almost to charcoal. If this sounds like something you and your family would like to try this festive period, whether it be to replace your traditional turkey and veg dish or not, then why give it a go!
If you're looking to go alternative with your Christmas dinner but not altogether too wacky, then going fishy with your cooking endeavour could be the way forward for you. You see, excuse the puns but this is an option that will see you swimming against the Christmas culinary norm tide without allowing yourself to drown in a preparing and cooking process that is too deep for you to stay afloat of. And when deciding what kind of fish dish you will be serving, look no further than salmon fillets stuffed with cod. This is a delectable dish that will have the mouths of all of your guests (again, excuse the pun) watering as it swims atop of your Christmas dinner table.
There’s a been a lot of mention of meat and fish in this post, so it’s only fair and right that vegetarian Christmas options are spoken of too. And it is for good reason that they are, because they are just as delectable as any of the dishes mentioned above! You could go for a butternut, sage and hazelnut quiche, the hazelnut giving this meat-free dish the festive feel it needs to make it as a Christmas dish. You could go for beetroot and squash wellingtons with kale pesto if you want to take the stress out of your dinner preparations this Christmas. Or, you could go for any of the other dishes found on this comprehensive vegetarian Christmas list.
So, there you have it, a few ideas on how you can subvert the culinary norms of Christmas over this festive period. And, once you’ve figured out exactly how you're going to do that and what you will be cooking for all of your guests, make sure you turn your attentions to your guests’ sleeping arrangements. Well, make sure you do that if you don’t want to ruin Christmas for your guests worse than the Grinch did that one year for the residents of Whoville!