Christmas traditions are lovely, but serving the same Christmas foods cooked in the same way can become dull and lacking in imagination. To ensure that you get high-quality food at the best prices, look at the services offered by PSL and consider trying 12 new trends to add some more Christmas sparkle to your festivities this year.
1: For an alternative to turkey or ham, try serving pork belly. With a delicious creamy texture, it makes a luxurious meal.
2: Don’t forget the crackling! Served with apple sauce or plum jam, it adds a lavish touch to the meat.
3: Turkey is still popular, so keep it on your menu; but liven it up with a spicy marinade or find unusual stuffing to add an exotic flavour.
4: You traditionally roast turkey in goose fat, but this year why not try something different? Coconut oil is healthier and still gives your turkey that mouth-watering crispy skin.
5: Don’t make your customers choose between different meats when they could have a mixture. A three-bird roast is gaining popularity. Turkey, duck and goose are popular options, but for something unusual, you could include pheasant or pigeon.
6: Even the most diehard traditionalist will often like to try something different in a starter. Octopus is becoming increasingly common on menus. It is a versatile ingredient that makes a light starter, or you can serve it with pasta as a main for those wanting an alternative to meat. Ensure that all your meals comply to the latest allergen laws, and publish fully up to date allergen menus both on your website and within your restaurant through PSL’s Allergen Management service.
7: Pomegranate is a superfood packed with antioxidants, but other qualities make it ideal for a Christmas feast. Its stunning colour makes meals appear even more festive, while its tart sweetness adds a contrasting flavour to both meats and salads.
8: There are lots of other traditional Christmas desserts that you can serve in place of a typical Christmas pudding. A chocolatey yule log is a popular way to end a meal, and cafés can serve stollen as an alternative to Christmas cake or mince pies.
9: Meringue makes a lighter dessert choice, but by adding flavours, you can give them a seasonal twist. For example, try chocolate orange, peppermint chocolate, whisky or even Christmas pudding flavours.
10: Take the Christmas theme into your drinks menu, instantly setting the scene with pre-dinner drinks. You can use mince pie syrup to make a festive cocktail that sums up the essence of Christmas in a glass.
11: For restaurants and cafés where a traditional roast is not in keeping with the ambiance, find new ways to incorporate Christmas. An Italian can serve a Christmas pizza, while an Indian might serve a luxurious turkey curry. Be inventive. Everyone enjoys discovering something new.
12: Many Christmas foods have become traditional for a reason, so keep some festive favourites on the menu throughout December — and don’t forget the crackers!
When planning your menu, don’t forget allergen laws. Use PSL’s What’s in My Dish service if you need any advice on building a compliant Christmas menu so that no one misses out on the festive fun. PSL can also offer help and guidance on recipe costing throughout the season, saving you time and money.