Christmas is a wonderful time of year that comes with many treats and trials. We love having time to read a good book over the holiday but we also know we’re inevitably going to get drawn in to masses of crimbo preparation. Whether you love the cold weather that’s perfect for snuggling up in front of a fire or escaping to a warmer climate away from all the decorations Christmas is a time for family. Something that we can all agree on though at this time of year, is the food. Taking inspiration from Debbie Johnson’s Christmas at the Comfort Food Café we decided to share with you our favourite Christmas comfort foods, both weird and wonderful.
The wonderful …
It’s an obvious one for some and others may hate it but for Harper Impulse it firmly falls into the wonderful category. Cold cheese, warm cheese, soft cheese, hard cheese. Cheese with bread, with crackers, with chutney and pickle or without. Cheese is an indulgence full of very different but equally wonderful flavours that can make any holiday that little bit more pleasant. Whether you’re a fan of cheddar or camembert, in Harper Impulse’s holidays you can’t have Christmas without cheese.
Honourable mention: Cold meats such as prosciutto, salami, chorizo. Not everyone is a fan but with a bit of cheese, maybe some fresh bread or even on their own we love a slice!
No laughing please. Now nuts aren’t the most common snack out there but they are one that seems to be a part of every household at Christmas. At no other point of year but Christmas do we go and buy every type of nut we can get our hands on. From Brazil Nuts to cashews, salted peanuts to almonds to the classic walnut which, for some reason at Christmas we actually buy in their shells. There is nothing more satisfying that cracking a nut in preparation for the Christmas special binge-watching that becomes inevitable. At Harper Impulse we love our nuts.
Let’s be honest. Roast potatoes are everyone’s favourite part of a roast dinner. Crisp and golden, a fluffy white inside saturated with warmth and goodness at mealtime. We wish it was acceptable to carry these around as a snack but alas we must wait for the big Christmas lunch. While some love parsnips, and many prefer broccoli to cauliflower, we can all agree the faithful roast tattie is a staple of all comfort foods.
Pigs in Blankets
We know the vegetarians will hate us for this and they have every right to. But they’re just so good!
The difference between a regular trifle and a Christmas trifle you ask? Alcohol, usually. This desert is usually crafted by mother dearest of grandma and for some reason for the holidays every after dinner treat must contain booze. Whether it’s brandy, sherry, some odd type of liqueur you’ll find them in most puddings during this winter event. And we at Harper Impulse thoroughly approve. The trifle of custard, jelly cream and those delicious ladyfingers take us back to our childhood, but the added addition of a tipple makes it acceptably grown up.
So of course when asking the Harper Impulse team what their Christmas comfort food was we all answered first with different chocolates. So, we’ve decided to group them together. Highlights include Matchmakers, which for some reason we hate at every other point of year, and Quality Street who of course will always be superior to other selections of boxed chocolate. However, the greatest of all the different options, the supremo, the king of this sweet collection is of course the Christmas tree chocolate decorations. You may have only had them as a child, but for Harper Impulse there’s nothing better than the guilty pleasure of the Christmas tree chocolate decoration, preferably Cadbury, which you know shouldn’t be eaten before the actual day. Of course you ignore this and, like the Grinch sneaking and slinking around, you gobble them up and hide the remains where no one will find them. Except your mum, who will find them and will get annoyed … and then later indulges in the same guilty pleasure you do.
The weird …
We try not to judge anyone here at Harper Impulse but here are a few odd suggestions that came from different members of the team shared.
Some people really, really love their vegetables. We guess that all those tall tales about growing strong paid off with them. To some these root veggies are the height of the healthy options at Christmas, to others (me) they’re evil beings masquerading as roast potatoes that then give you a rude awakening.
A clear divider in any home over the holiday. Some people love these leafy green balls, others avoid them like the plague. Harper Impulse is undecided on this issue with some arguing the case for with added and bacon and some vehemently shaking their heads in discuss. We’ll leave you to decide on this one.
Pringles … with pickled red cabbage.
So this has been something that this lover has been doing since a child. A weird experiment that turned into a lifelong classic, it happens every year though only at Christmas. The advice from this specific team member (me) is to use barbeque Pringles specifically and try not to let the pickle juice turn the crisp too soggy.
We now leave you with us, and probably you, feeling extremely hungry and in need of some of these treats. We may avoid the Brussels sprouts though. Here are some dancing Pringles for you to try to take your mind off that rumbling tummy of yours!