As the holiday season approaches, families and friends gather around the dinner table to indulge in festive feasts that are as much a part of the celebration as the gifts and decorations. While traditions vary across the globe, certain dishes have become synonymous with Christmas dinner. Here’s a look at some of the most beloved holiday dishes that are likely to grace tables this Christmas.
The Quintessential Christmas Centerpieces
1. Roasted Turkey: A staple in many households, the roasted turkey holds its place as the centerpiece of the Christmas meal. Its popularity soars during the festive season, with millions enjoying its succulent meat alongside a variety of side dishes.
2. Roast Beef: For those who prefer red meat, roast beef is a classic alternative. Often encrusted with herbs like tarragon, it offers a robust flavor that pairs well with traditional sides.
3. Ham: Glazed with honey or adorned with a cherry bourbon sauce, ham is another favorite that adds a sweet and savory element to the holiday spread.
Sides That Steal the Show
1. Roast Potatoes: Crowned as America’s favorite, roast potatoes win hearts with their crispy exteriors and fluffy centers. They are a must-have for a complete Christmas dinner.
2. Mashed Potatoes: A close second in popularity, creamy mashed potatoes serve as the perfect comfort food and a versatile accompaniment to any main dish.
3. Stuffing: Whether it’s a classic bread stuffing or one enhanced with wild rice and cranberries, stuffing is essential for soaking up all the delicious flavors on the plate.
4. Brussels Sprouts: These miniature cabbages, especially when combined with bacon and pecans, transform into a side dish that even skeptics can’t resist.
5. Cranberry Sauce: No Christmas dinner is complete without the tangy and sweet presence of cranberry sauce, cutting through the richness of the other dishes.
Sweet Endings and Festive Drinks
1. Plum Pudding: A traditional dessert that has stood the test of time, plum pudding is a dense, fruity delight that often concludes the Christmas meal.
2. Eggnog: This creamy beverage, spiked or non-alcoholic, is a holiday favorite that embodies the spirit of Christmas in a cup.
3. Mulled Wine: For a warming drink, mulled wine with its spices and citrus notes is a perfect choice to sip on a cold winter’s night.
What is the most popular Christmas dish in America?
Roast potatoes are the most popular Christmas dish in America, with a win percentage of 76%.
Can I substitute turkey with another protein for Christmas dinner?
Absolutely. Roast beef, ham, and even fish pies are excellent alternatives for those who prefer different proteins.
What are some unique side dishes for Christmas dinner?
Beyond the classics, consider adding dishes like tarragon crusted roast beef or Brussels sprouts with bacon and pecans for a unique twist.
Is it common to have drinks like eggnog and mulled wine during Christmas dinner?
Yes, festive drinks like eggnog and mulled wine are common and add to the celebratory atmosphere of Christmas dinner.
Glossary of Terms
– Roasted Turkey: A large bird traditionally seasoned and cooked in an oven until the skin is golden and the meat is tender.
– Plum Pudding: A steamed or boiled dessert made with dried fruit, nuts, and spices, often served during Christmas.
– Eggnog: A rich, chilled, sweetened dairy-based beverage traditionally made with milk, cream, sugar, whipped egg whites, and egg yolks.
– Mulled Wine: A beverage usually made with red wine along with various mulling spices and sometimes raisins, served hot or warm.