Want to Try Something Different This Christmas?

The North American Christmas menu is pretty much set in stone. If you aren’t preparing turkey or ham as the main course, with a side of potatoes, stuffing, a roll, and some salad, then you are breaking with tradition.

Of course, part of the fun that comes from cooking is coloring outside the lines. If your friends and family are game and you’re feeling ambitious, why not try something a little different this December 25th? Here are some foods commonly eaten at Christmas in other countries that we have fashioned into a multi-course meal.

Russia

Feeling a little fishy this holiday season? Why not dine on some Zakuski? These Russian fish appetizers are typically served with vodka shots, so you might want to only offer one per guest.

Malta

Ready for some soup? Imbuljuta tal-Qastan is a wonderful cocoa-chestnut soup that provides just the contrasting flavor to get you ready for the main course.

Germany

When was the last time you enjoyed roast goose? While a bit more challenging to prepare than turkey, it’s an excellent substitute. Germans look forward to Weihnachtsgans every holiday season.

Finland

Need a break from baked or mashed? Porkkanalaatiko is a Finnish carrot casserole that provides a zesty alternative.

Poland

Here is one that you and your guests may already know. Perogies have made their way into North American culture, but did you know that they are a Christmas staple in their country of origin? Add a plateful to your yuletide menu as they are a safe bet for guests who might not want to try some of the more offbeat entrees.

Portugal

We head to Portugal for this delicious desert temptation: Lampreia de Ovos. Yes, that does translate as Lamprey Eggs, but don’t worry, this sweet egg cakes only gets that name because it is traditionally baked in the shape of a lamprey. Chicken eggs are a perfectly acceptable substitute.

Bon Appétit and Season’s Greetings!