Tradition is at the heart of most holiday celebrations. Many traditional holiday foods are included in popular Christmas carols. But what are those “traditional” foods? Include these treats in your upcoming holiday celebrations. However, if you don’t have the time to crank out Figgy Pudding, call Serendipity to make it for you.
Traditional Holiday Food
Figgy Pudding (Christmas pudding or plum pudding)
Made famous by the carol “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” this pudding, more like bread pudding, is British and dates back to Shakespeare’s time. This is known because the English Puritans banned it because of the high alcohol content! This cakelike treat is loaded with dried fruits, including figs, and has brandy, cognac or rum in the mix and often poured over the top.
Most figgy pudding recipes call for hours of steaming. Some contain exotic ingredients. However, the base of the scrumptious dessert is somewhat like carrot cake loaded with dried fruits.
Good Housekeeping offers a simplified recipe for the traditional Christmas dessert.
The classic tale of “A Christmas Carol” featured a goose at the holiday table. “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer” sings about the goose as well. Why goose?
The goose is popular in Europe, where they are served as a traditional holiday food in many countries, according to Food Lover’s Companion. In olden days, the goose adorned the table of the working class because it was very accessible and affordable. Similarly, the turkey was only for the European rich.
In the United States, because turkeys were abundant, they became the holiday bird of choice. Furthermore, geese are available and graded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
A Grade A goose is the best. Grade B is less meaty and Grade C is not typically available to consumers. Geese contain a lot of fat and taste best when roasted.
Here is a basic recipe for a goose.
“The worst gift is a fruitcake. There is only one fruitcake in the entire world, and people keep sending it to each other.” Those are the words of Johnny Carson, former host of the Tonight Show. Surprisingly, the fruity dessert is not be featured in a carol.
As far back as the Middle Ages, people cooked candied fruits into bread as a luxury for special occasions. In the 18th century, Europe outlawed fruitcake for being “sinfully rich.”
For those of you haven’t dared take a bit, fruitcake consists of large chunks of fruit and nuts held together by a small amount of cake. Consequently, the dessert requires a lot of sugar in the recipe.
The Joy of Baking features a fruitcake recipe. This is a staple in our culture and has become a bonafide tradition at the dinner table.
We have visions of sugarplums dance in our heads during the holidays. But wait. What does a sugarplum look like? You may be surprised.
The true definition of sugarplum is a sweet, sugary treat made around a seed or kernel, according to “Sugar Plums: They are not What You Think They Are” in The Atlantic.
Using a process called panning, successive layers of sugar pour over the seed and allowed to harden. This is the same process used to make Jawbreakers. This process is tedious and time-consuming but can have a delicious outcome for those willing to try.
While this recipe uses plums, research indicates the sugarplums referred to in the famous poem, had no fruit in them whatsoever. They are called sugarplums because of their shape.
Let Serendipity help
Your vision may not include sugarplums, but instead, savory food inspired from around the world. Let Serendipity create a menu just for you.