In a recent feature, we took a look at some great gift ideas for grown ups to consider this Christmas. After all, the adults in your life need good presents, too! It is also worth noting, however, that to many of us who would consider ourselves “grown ups,” the real pleasures of the holiday season often come in the form of food or drink. There is no more suitable time of the year to be indulgent and generous to ourselves, and with that in mind we’ve taken a look at what delicious drinks and sweet and savoury treats there are to enjoy this Christmas!
There’s a host of wonderful, festive recipes that appear around Christmastime, and nowhere is this so evident as in the variety of lattes available. In almost any coffee shop at this time of year, we’re presented with seasonally blended coffees with flavours like gingerbread, cinnamon, peppermint, and even eggnog. All of these make for wonderful, tasty pick-me-ups as you take a break from your Christmas gift buying (not to mention many of them are surprisingly easy to make at home!).
Orange Hot Chocolate
While it’s pretty much a given that hot chocolate is just about universally popular this time of year, a recent Foxy Bingo survey on festive drinks determined that chocolate orange hot chocolate is actually the nation’s second-favourite holiday season drink. So we’re running with the idea! While the more traditional plain chocolate (and marshmallow-filled) drink is always a good choice, the continual emergence of high-street coffee shop chains seems to have brought about more inventive twists on the recipe. And the orange chocolate variety is extremely tasty –– and again, fairly easy to have a go at in your own kitchen as well.
Whilst taking a rest from your busy day shopping, why not indulge yourself in a seasonal pastry to go with your spiced latte? The patisserie windows are full of mouth-watering, freshly baked goods this time of year, from spiced cinnamon swirls to the traditional mince pie. Of course, if you’d rather take things into your own hadn’t there’s also no shortage of Christmas baking recipes making the rounds this time of year –– giving you outlines and inspiration for tasty treats like almond mine pie puffs and honey spiced cookies. Ultimately, whether you buy them or bake them, pastries are a sweet treat “must eat” for Christmas.
If you ever have an excuse for enjoying desserts with every meal then it’s at Christmas. Amongst the many traditions during the holiday season, having Christmas cake and pudding on the table is one of the very best. That said, Christmas pudding is not for everyone, and is rapidly dropping down lists of popular favourites. For those who’d opt for something else, there’s plenty to choose from; starry night trifle is a fantastic alternative to Christmas pudding alongside yule logs, and the panettone pudding is also growing more popular.
For a lovely savoury treat at Christmas, smoked salmon is way up at the top of the list, with a host of gourmet versions commonly available. It’s not actually hugely difficult to smoke your own fish either, and it’s a fun activity to do with friends or family –– though you will need equipment. Meanwhile, if you’d prefer to take the work out of it, a simple internet search will offer up a huge selection of smoked salmon from sources ranging from the Scottish smokehouses of Inverawe to the secret smokehouses of London.
Pigs in Blankets
They’ve long been a key component to Christmas Dinner, alongside roast potatoes and turkey stuffing –– but they’re still a favourite savoury treat even as a snack on any old December day. If you fancy trying your hand at cooking pigs in blankets, The Spruce Eats’ recipe is perfectly easy to follow, with minimal ingredients and a total 35-minute preparation and cooking time. Alternatively, if you haven’t the inclination, there are some great shop-bought, deluxe pigs in blankets that can be placed straight in the oven with no preparation. Whether you buy them ready to heat or you make your own though, it’s definitely worth spending a little extra and treating yourself to the best ingredients at Christmas.
This is by no means an exhaustive treat list, but hopefully it has given you some good ideas to start with. Any or all of the above can help to make your Christmas season all the more enjoyable. Now go out and plan your menu of seasonal indulgences!