Christmas lunch. Do you go traditional or try something different?

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We love good food at home. On the weekends, my husband and I get out the cookbooks and pick something new to try. Something that fits the season and works with a bottle of something nice.

We love food. Fresh food. Food cooked from scratch.

We’re lucky to live near a great supply of fresh seafood, so that frequently appears on our weekly menu and we’re seduced by our local fruit and vegetable store. Seriously, this place makes even garlic look sexy. It’s true, you CAN merchandise fruit and veg.

So, when it comes to Christmas, I like to play the adventurous card; he likes to play the traditional one.

I can’t do – or spend the whole day in a hot kitchen – so we come up with a compromise. Modern spins on the traditional. Things that suit our lifestyle and our climate but still celebrate Christmas.

Here are three ideas that I’m mulling over in my head for Christmas this year:

1. Roast duck legs, radicchio risotto, sour cherry and orange sauce: I spotted this recipe on my sister-in-law’s sister’s (work that one out if you can!) blog last year. Lucy Uppill is based in South Australia and is an incredible cook and the creator of Spice Road flavour bases. This recipe appealed to me for its simplicity and its northern Italian festive appeal.

Lucy wrote: This Christmas we have about 14 for lunch … so roasting a big tray of duck legs, stirring up a risotto and adding a quick sauce on the side is the answer to feeding the family. 

Ducklicious: Roast Duck legs, radicchio risotto, sour cherry and orange sauce

Roast Duck legs, radicchio risotto, sour cherry and orange sauce

2. Warm salad of roast pumpkin and chickpeas: Jules at Stone Soup is my latest food blogger crush. I am completely faithful to Veggie Mama because she lives next door and brings lovely things for wine or morning tea time but I can’t help flirting with Jules’ blog since hearing her speak last month on a panel at a blogging conference I attended. I love creating really interesting salads and sides and I think this one has a good balance of tradition (the roast pumpkin) and modern (the spices).

Jules wroteThis salad really capatilises on the nutty sweetness of good roast pumpkin, highlighted with a few spices. It really is the business and it’s vegan too.

Stone Soup: warm salad of roast pumpkin & chickpeas

Warm salad of roast pumpkin and chickpeas

3. Chocolate pavlova: I’ve got a recipe for this that I clipped from a magazine so long ago I can’t remember where from but I found a similar one on Kidspot. For me, pavlova is the perfect option for Christmas dessert. It’s so Aussie but with the chocolate base and the addition of raspberries and dark chocolate shavings, it offers the decadence levels you’d expect at Christmas time.

Kidspot says: The contrast of the chocolate with the cream and raspberries on top of a meringue base is a perfect end to any meal. 

Kidspot: chocolate pavlova

Chocolate pavlova

I’d love to know what you’re planning to serve up this Christmas? Do you do the same treats every year or do you like to mix it up? Traditional or modern? Any recipes you’d like to share? If so, head to our Facebook page and share the link for everyone.

  • MJLeaver

    Oh no, those meals look delicious, but not for Christmas.

    I’m a big traditionalist.

    Prawns for entree. Roast turkey, roast pork, roast lamb. Cold ham. Roast vegetables and all the trimmings for main course.

    Home-made christmas pudding and brandy custard for dessert, and a cheese platter for my Dad and Uncle (diabetics)

    My first hosting in our new place, and it is going to be a massive one this year, but I’m really looking forward to it.

    I generally do the meat in the weber, so it doesn’t make the house too stifling, and the veggies only take an hour or so, so the oven doesn’t need to be on all day!

    • Nikki Parkinson

      Ooh, can I come round? I’ll bring my Weber too! Sounds divine.