A multicultural Christmas feast

The staff here at the Pipestone Flyer are already dreaming about sugarplums, Christmas turkey and other traditional...

Lutefisk is a traditional Norwegien dish. Photo credit: Adam_d

The staff here at the Pipestone Flyer are already dreaming about sugarplums, Christmas turkey and other traditional holiday foods, but as we all come from different heritages with different backgrounds our ancestors were dreaming about very different Christmas foods years ago.

Around the world cultural holiday foods differ vastly from each other, but why buy a plane ticket when all those delicious meals can be created right at home in the kitchen.

Editor Stu Salkeld, Norwegian

Lutefisk

Ingredients:

dried lutefisk

2 Tbs lye

Directions:

1. Soak the fish in clear water for 3 days.

2. Add 2 tbsp lye into a gallon of water.

3. Soak for 3 days in this solution.

4. Then soak for 4 days in clear water, changing the water every day.

5. To cook the lute fish:.

Tie the fish loosely in a square of cheese cloth.

Drop in a large enamel pot of boiling water.

Cook 10 minutes or until well done.

Remove cheese cloth put on a platter and debone.

Serve with a white sauce, mustard sauce or melted butter.

Reporter Amelia Naismith, French

Dinde Aux Marrons (Chestnut-stuffed turkey)

Ingredients:

For the stuffing

150ml Madeira or white wine

20g pack dried porcini mushrooms

2 onions, halved and sliced

25g butter

15g pack thyme

2 x 454g packs Cumberland sausages, skins removed

200g pack whole cooked chestnut

zest, 1 lemon

15g pack flat-leaf parsley

85g fresh breadcrumb

10 rashers streaky bacon

For the turkey

1 onion, quartered

4.5 to 5.6 kg turkey, giblets removed (to use in stock)

85g soft butter

1 whole nutmeg

10 rashers streaky bacon

125ml glass Madeira or white wine

Watercress sprigs, to garnish

Directions:

1. First make the stuffing. Pour the Madeira or wine into a bowl, then crumble in the mushrooms. Fry the onions in the butter for 10 mins, until golden. Cool, then mix with the thyme leaves, the mushrooms and their soaking liquid, and all remaining ingredients, apart from 8 of the chestnuts and the bacon. Season well.

2. Set aside half of the stuffing. Line a greased 500g loaf tin with bacon. Pack the rest of the stuffing into the tin, then bring the rashers round over the top and secure in place with cocktail sticks. Use the reserved chestnuts to fill the spaces where the bacon meets. Chill until ready to cook. This will keep in the fridge uncooked for 2 days or can be frozen for up to a month.

3. Prepare the turkey. The night before, put the onion quarters, reserved lemon halves and thyme sprigs in the cavity between the legs. Pack the reserved stuffing into the neck end. Secure the neck skin with skewers and tie the legs together. Weigh the turkey. Calculate the cooking time at 40 mins per kilo, plus 20 mins.

4. Put a large sheet of extra-wide foil in a large roasting tin and put the turkey on top. Smear the breast with the butter, then grate over half of the nutmeg and season well. Cover with bacon, then pour over the glass of Madeira or wine. Seal the foil well to make a parcel. Chill overnight.

5. On the day, take the turkey out of the fridge 1 hr before roasting. Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Put the turkey in the oven; then, 90 mins before the end of cooking, remove foil and bacon, and drain off the juices from the tin to use in the gravy. To test whether the turkey is cooked, push a skewer into the thickest part of the thigh the juices should run clear. If they are pinkish, cook for 15 mins more, then test again.

6. Transfer the turkey to a platter, cover with foil, then a couple of tea towels, and allow to rest for at least 30 mins before carving. Meanwhile, cook the stuffing loaf for 30 mins and reheat the bacon. Garnish with watercress and serve the stuffing loaf separately.

Reception Sheree Baillie, English

Beef Wellington

Ingredients:

2 1/2 pounds beef tenderloin

2 tablespoons butter, softened

2 tablespoons butter

1 onion, chopped

1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

2 ounces liver pate

2 tablespoons butter, softened

salt and pepper to taste

1 (17.5 ounce) package frozen puff pastry, thawed

1 egg yolk, beaten

1 (10.5 ounce) can beef broth

2 tablespoons red wine

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Place beef in a small baking dish, and spread with 2 tablespoons softened butter. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until browned. Remove from pan, and allow to cool completely. Reserve pan juices.

2. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and mushrooms in butter for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and let cool.

3. Mix together pate and 2 tablespoons softened butter, and season with salt and pepper. Spread pate over beef. Top with onion and mushroom mixture.

4. Roll out the puff pastry dough, and place beef in the center. Fold up, and seal all the edges, making sure the seams are not too thick. Place beef in a 9×13 inch baking dish, cut a few slits in the top of the dough, and brush with egg yolk.

5. Bake at 450 degrees F (230 degrees C) for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 10 to 15 more minutes, or until pastry is a rich, golden brown. Set aside, and keep warm.

6. Place all reserved juices in a small saucepan over high heat. Stir in beef stock and red wine; boil for 10 to 15 minutes, or until slightly reduced. Strain, and serve with beef.

Advertising consultant Mandy Vuylsteke, German

Stollen

Ingredients

3/4 cup raisins

1/2 cup chopped mixed candied fruit

1/4 cup dried currants

3/4 cup apple juice

4-1/2 to 5 cups all-purpose flour

2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk

1/2 cup butter, cubed

2 eggs

2 tablespoons grated orange peel

1 tablespoon grated lemon peel

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 cup chopped almonds

Confectioners’ sugar, optional

For the glaze:

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

3 to 4 tablespoons milk

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, soak raisins, fruit and currants in apple juice for 1 hour; drain and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups of flour, yeast, sugar and salt. In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter to 120°-130°. Add to dry ingredients; beat just until moistened. Add the eggs, grated peels and extract; beat until smooth. Stir in the almond, fruit mixture and enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

3. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

4. Punch dough down; divide in half. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll each half into a 12-in. x 8-in. oval. Fold one of the long sides over to within 1 in. of the opposite side; press edges lightly to seal. Place on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until almost doubled, about 30 minutes.

5. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire racks. Dust with confectioners’ sugar or combine glaze ingredients and drizzle over loaves. Yield: 2 loaves