One of the best parts of the holiday season is all of the delicious food! Here are 9 Christmas recipes from around the world that are sure to add festive flair to your table.
“These German Christmas cookies were a Christmas staple in my mothers kitchen, and personally, my favorite Christmas baked good. Light, nutty, and just the right amount of sweetness, these almond vanilla flavored crescents are very much like a short bread cookie, but coated in a fine dusting of sugar.
I remember helping my parents bake these and other cookies every year, but would always hide a few vanillekipferl once out of the oven to ensure I had extra to snack on! Easy to make, these Christmas cookies have been around for years, and are often found at markets and bake sales in Germany during the holidays. They make a great baked gift, if you don’t eat them all first that is!” – Markus from Earth, Food and Fire.
“Struffoli is a classic on the Italian Christmas table, typical of Naples but widespread throughout Italy with different names according to the Region. During Christmas time Struffoli is present in every house or bakery, in various shapes and decorations.
Struffoli are deep fried little dough balls, scented with orange and lemon zest and a touch of liquor. The fried balls are then coated in honey, sprinkles, and candied fruit and shaped into a Christmas tree, a wreath, or a pyramid. It is a rich, fragrant dessert, served mostly at Christmas (Eve and Day) or New Year’s.
In my memories, Struffoli were made by my aunt, zia Teresa, in cute mounds of sticky deliciousness wrapped in a nice rigid cellophane and sealed with a ribbon. It was presented to the table among echoes of oohs and aahs in anticipation of the wrapping being opened. When unwrapped, eager hands grasped those little morsels in a very unorthodox serving manner, slowly deconstructing the shape of the Struffoli until there were none… All that remains is an empty platform and time until the next Christmas when the excitement begins again.” – Nicoletta from Sugar Love Spices
“My favorite kinds of recipes for the holidays are those that combine comfort meals with real food ingredients – and preferably not too many of them. Even better if they have an international inspiration, too!
Being originally from Eastern Russia and having a Jewish heritage, I have a weak spot for both European cuisine and comfort food. I strive to achieve this in a low carb, often paleo way, since that is how my family and I eat. My favorite place in the world is Paris, and French cuisine is truly one of the best, so this was the inspiration for pan-fried green beans almondine with bacon and garlic. It combines the best of all these aspects – French comfort food made with just a few simple, natural ingredients. The whole family will love it, no matter their way of eating.” – Maya from Wholesome Yum
“Just like pumpkin pie is popular in the US over the festive period, plum pudding is the go-to dessert at Christmas time where we live, as well as many other parts of the world. Yes, it is very English and traditional to eat this hot dessert – even on a hot Christmas Day, as frequently occurs in Australia and other countries in the Southern Hemisphere. It often follows a hot roast dinner!
But in reality, summer is the wrong season to enjoy hot plum pudding. But there is something our family makes each Christmas at our family gettogethers to celebrate traditional, Christmas foods that don’t make you feel over-heated. Whisky-laced plum pudding ice cream, smothered with home-made butterscotch sauce has become tradition in our family and something we look forward to each year. All the traditional ingredients but in ice-cream form rather than pudding form. And popular with the whole family from grandparents to grandchildren.” – Mark and Elizabeth from Compass and Fork
“I am a Maritime gal. Raised in Charlottetown PEI, I currently call St. Albert AB home. Growing up we always had the pleasure of a Lobster feast on Christmas Eve. Everyone enjoyed the messy job of cracking our own Lobsters, shucking our own Oysters, and dipping our warm baguette bread in the delicious broth from our steamed Mussels. It was an Island Christmas Eve tradition.
Moving to the West I worried that tradition may have to be set aside, however this was not the case. Instead, the tradition grew. It became an “East meets West” party with friends and family. I ship our Lobsters and Oysters directly from the Island, while my Alberta friends bring a haul of Alberta beef to the gathering. It is my favourite event of the year and I am thrilled my kids are able to enjoy the best of both worlds.” – Vanessa from Adopted Tomato
“I created this recipe out of my love for the traditional butter tarts I make every year (based on my Grandma’s butter tart filling recipe). I brought this butter tart bundt cake to a holiday potluck at work this year, and made it for a holiday bake sale (mini bundts) a couple of years ago. I would definitely make it for Christmas dinner too, but haven’t yet!” – Terri from Food Meanderings
“These coconut Chelsea buns are my mom’s interpretation of a classic British Chelsea bun, with a Caribbean twist. She adds coconut and candied fruit to the dough, along with a dash of Angostura bitters. These are quintessential Christmas flavours at my house, as we tend to use them in most of our holiday desserts. In fact, it’s not unusual for us to start hoarding bags of shredded coconut in advance (stored in the freezer, of course) so we don’t have to worry about running out! We also keep the tradition of having a glass jar of candied fruit soaking in cherry brandy sitting in our pantry. We’ll use it up for our Christmas baking and then set another batch to soak for another year, so we’re always ready to bake!” – Shareba
“When I was young, my mother used to prepare the most delicious concoction during the winter months. It was a drink that her mother had prepared for her. Something taught to my Nani (“Maternal Grandmother”) by the head chef of her grandfather’s home in India over 80 years ago.
“Madam, this is Egg P’lip”, the chef would say in his heavy Indian accent, “to warm your heart in the winter, and strengthen you in the summer.”
Egg P’lip, actually a mispronunciation of ‘Egg Flip’, soon became Egg Philip, a childhood favourite of mine – mornings when my fingers and toes felt cold, my mother would make it for me.
“Your heart is warm, this will help the other bits.”
It seems nonsensical now, partly because the simple-to-make beverage was served cold, and partly because I grew up in the Middle East where the ‘winter’ was hardly testing, a cool 20-25 degrees C.I still enjoy Egg Philip on the odd occasion, and living now in Canada as we go through what appears to be a particularly cold winter, it would seem that I need a little something to warm my toes.” – Rizwan from Chocolates and Chai
“This potato and bread stuffing recipe is buried deep within my husband’s Acadian roots. The star of this recipe is the lessor known (at least present day, here in North America) herb, savory. I suspect the use of savory comes via the European ancestry of the Acadian people. Historically, savory is one of the most important herbs in European cuisine and perhaps the first herb to make its way to the New World from Europe.
Along with the turkey and stuffing, the family recipe also includes cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, steamed peas and carrots and gravy made with the turkey drippings. I don’t know the exact origin of this Christmas/Thanksgiving dinner recipe, but surely it reflects a time when people consumed less meat day to day than the average person does today. For Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts, the meat portion took center stage. Hence, in this meal, the stress is all on the turkey, the vegetables playing an insignificant role. “ – Annika from Coniferes & Feuillus
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