Lots of people have been blogging over the last few weeks about preparations for Christmas - making puddings (yeuch), cakes (yeuch) and mincemeat (it's ok if it does not include any alcohol or candied peel).
Have you noticed I'm not a great fan of the traditional English christmas sweet things? That's mainly because I believe spirits should be imbibed from a glass and not used to ruin food (I don't mind wine and beer in sauces/casseroles). Hell I don't even like rum and raisin toffees!
I also hate the candied peel that tends to be included in packets of mixed dried fruit and hence ends up in most fruit cakes and christmas puds. Which is odd considering how much I loved the chocolate-covered orange peel!
I don't mind mincemeat if it is made to the family recipe (no peel, no alcohol) but rarely make it as the Curse doesn't like it and it gets thrown away in the end. I've still got half a jar I begged off my mum in the back of the fridge, I'm going to dig it out and see if it's still ok...!
So what do I have for afters on Christmas Day? Usually a bit of a lie down after eating too much duck and roast spuds. Then maybe four or five hours later, cheese, biscuits and - you guessed it - pickle!
corn chowder with chile, lime and cotija
5 minutes ago