Christmas Tables Across the Globe
5 Places to Go
Pick the one you find most irresistible,and go!
Roasted turkey plays a starring role on the American Christmas table. The bird is traditionally stuffed with sweet onion cornbread, fresh figs, and foie gras, then tucked into the oven, where it slowly acquires a deep golden colour and succulent flavour. The supporting cast includes mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, cranberry sauce and the very American apple pie. At bigger and more formal dos, dinner is a multi-course affair, beginning with a cheese board and ending with a sensational Christmas pudding.
Loosen your belts when you sit down to a German Christmas dinner—they say if you don’t dine well here, demons might haunt you. Of course, dining well is a delicious antidote to evil when the table is laden with roasted goose stuffed with diced onions, apples, chestnuts, braised red cabbage, hearty sausages, fresh cheese dumplings, warm potato salad and ginger cookies, washed down with hot spiced mulled wine.
Reindeer is the most popular game meat here, and for many Icelanders, Christmas isn’t complete unless it’s on their table. Another key dish is very salty and strong-flavoured smoked lamb. It can be served hot or cold and comes with a side of white potato sauce, peas, red cabbage and a non-alcoholic orange-flavoured Christmas drink. The fun-to-pronounce hamborgarhryggur is another Icelandic favourite—salted hog roast sweetened with a Coca-Cola glaze. It is also served with caramelised potatoes, pickled red onion and some vegetables. Luxury dinners feature premium cuts of beef, geese and seafood such as langoustine (Icelandic lobster).
Not all Christmas tables feature giant piles of meat. The Poles love their pierogies—flour Beetroot soup is a hot favourite, followed by slow cooked carp fish served in a natural jelly with onion, almonds, raisins and soft bread. Some families cook classic herrings fillets in oil or with cream, sour apples, chopped onions, and warm potatoes. Poppy seeds cake, symbolic of prosperity, is served for dessert.
Nearly 80 pc of Filipinos are Catholics, which means you can expect a lavish and exotic X-mas feast. Tuck into the archipelago’s signature delicacy, lechon, whole roasted pig that is crisp on the outside and juicy inside. Discover the offbeat flavours of purple-coloured sticky rice cake, yellow noodles tossed with shrimp and eggs and spaghetti with a sweet touch. The meal typically ends with caramel custard or a soft and sweet rice cake.
New Delhi, Kolkata