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It’s the season of Christmas lights and presents along with a lot of excitement around all things foodie.
So in the spirit of the season we are starting to plan our Christmas dinner menus.
To wet everyone’s appetite and get some fresh inspiration, we have asked our French staff what their favourite Christmas dish is.
Here’s what six of them told us:
1. Foie gras in a homemade brioche bun topped with a soft boiled egg (Matthieu Nivard).
I couldn’t have asked for a better place to grow up. Food is a true religion in Bordeaux especially around Christmas time.
If I were to choose one food that I associate with Christmas in Bordeaux it’d have to be foie gras (duck or goose liver).
I cannot recall the first time I ever tasted it. The delicacy is as ubiquitous in the south west for Christmas as Brussels sprouts are in Ireland.
I do remember one Christmas though when my father decided to serve the traditional foie gras in a homemade brioche bun topped with a soft boiled egg. An absolute cholesterol bomb for sure but definitely one worth dying for.
Although my father claims he came up with the idea himself it seems Marie-Claire heard of it and published a recipe.
2. Truffes au chocolat.
To talk about my favourite Christmas food is not an easy one as I love almost EVERYTHING about Christmas dinner!
So what to choose if I had the choice between l’entrée, le plat de résistance et le dessert ? I wouldn’t be able to forget about foie gras, salmon, oysters, scallops, capon, turkey, and the famous bûche de Noël!
However, my favourite “petit plaisir” after the meal would be a coffee and chocolates, especially the chocolate truffles.
I remember tasting the chocolate truffles for the first time at my grandmother’s, I was around 8, and at first, I have to say, I was afraid to taste them as I thought they did not look that good! I could not believe how good they were when I felt the chocolate melting in my mouth!
And they are so easy to make!
3. Les huîtres avec les crépinettes (Marie-José O’Sullivan)
My favourite dish for Christmas is “les huîtres avec les crépinettes”, fresh oysters and flat small sausages with truffles.
In Bordeaux, it is a tradition to start the “Réveillon” with oysters and from a very young age, I learnt to love them!
4. Coquille Saint Jacques (Maika Larrue)
My favourite Christmas dish is by far the Coquille Saint Jacques, an appetizer of minced scallops in a cream sauce, topped with grated cheese.
I remember very clearly, when I was a child, waiting for the Christmas dinner time, ONLY because I couldn’t wait to taste again this creamy and unctuous starter.
5. Magret de canard – Pommes de terre (Marie Bredillot).
Magret de canard is one of the best Christmas dishes I’ve eaten with my family.
We eat the dish with all the family gathered near the fireplace and watch our kittens play around the house.
6. La bûche de Noël (Sophie Carton).
My favourite Christmas recipe is La bûche de Noël, expertly crafted by the pastry chefs from my village: the creamy chocolate shaped cut trunk, mellow foam inside and small decorative toys (Tree, Santa Claus, elves …).
When I was small, we used to argue with my sisters who would get Santa!