We asked our readers to share their words on their favourite Christmas food memories; we love how no story contained the same food, because Christmas is about more than a roast dinner!
Elizabeth, Leicester / London @elizabethlovatt
To me, it is still the height of sophistication, the poshest chocolates I know: Guylian chocolate seashells. A four by four grid, sixteen chocolates, given only to me, every year from Grandma Lovatt. Eaten slowly, well what counts as slowly for a child, always gone before the next year.
James, Brooklyn @jamessalvatore
A chicken madras from the local takeaway on Christmas Eve has always marked the beginning of the festivities for me and my family. We line our stomachs for the inevitable three-day feasting extravaganza, eventually finding ourselves slumped in a chair on the fourth day, vowing never to eat three Christmas dinners in a row again!
Meghan, Wellington, New Zealand @meghanelisecoops
My favourite part of the Christmas meal is the family classic mushroom en croute. Me and my Mum cooked it one year when she came to visit me in New Zealand, freezing half. Being able to taste my Mum’s home cooked food after she left, from halfway across the world, was the nicest thing.
Christmas is a mood and a mélange of smells.
Oil, heavy. Dough, yeasty. Honey. Fish.
Two Christmases without you and frittelle.
Too much oil, too much honey. The horrible surprise when you bit into an anchovy.
I hated them, but I loved you.
Christmas smells of you even if you’re gone.
Kitty, Peckham @kstogden
My parents' mulled wine is famously good and famously boozy. After the last drinks-party guest wobbles home, our dinner becomes the rest of the vat of wine and, if we're lucky, a forgotten tray of cocktail sausages in their honey and mustard glaze still warm from the oven. Sweet sticky sausage in one hand, sweet sticky wine in the other.
Every Christmas my mum manages to work smoked salmon into as many points of the day as possible (which I’m not complaining about). My favourite memories of Christmas are sitting around the kitchen table stabbing fluffy scrambled eggs and smoked salmon with a fork, washing it down with buck’s fizz.
Molly, Lewisham @mollyalessandra_
My favourite Christmas food is the Subway we used to have after our Christmas Eve night out in Reading. My sisters & I ate our Veggie Patties at 2am from the plates our mum had laid out for Christmas morning breakfast.
Kate, London / Sheffield @kateo92
The delicate moments of Christmas are my favourite. A wisp of fig, lathered in honey, romancing a knobbly parmigiano. A slither of sharp pickle, freed from its jar, hugging a blazing slice of roast ham. A bite of mint aero that disappears on your tongue.
Holly, London / Brooklyn @holhols
I always end up eating far too much cheese (is that a thing?) at Christmas. My family haven’t ever been big cheese fans and I simply can’t go without! Cheese boards or big mix ‘n’ match lumps of cheese are generally best shared however, whilst the rest of my family fight over the best chocolates in the box, I sit happily undisturbed, with a lap full of cheese, all to myself.
Emily, South London @bellyf.ul
As a child, my Christmas must-have was a bag of lebkuchen biscuits from Sainsburys. The combination of sugary spiced biscuits and the fact my parents hadn’t tried them before made me feel very grown up. I’ve since tried ‘proper’ lebkuchen but these slightly stale, star-shaped treats are still essential!
George, Queenstown, New Zealand @itsgeorgenee
Late night Christmas evening - sneaking into the kitchen with my big bro, acting like children but in reality very much the adults. Shoving as much turkey as the doorstop loaf could handle. Slathering’s of butter and crossing all fingers that there’s bread sauce left over. Slice in half. Voila.
Amy, Bath @amy.r.feldman
My Grandma and Grandpa had a rescue cocker spaniel who was golden and gorgeous and the biggest food thief you'd ever meet. Nothing was safe. Including the leftover turkey and carcass that had been wrapped and put in the outside bin... For days afterwards we genuinely thought she'd explode.
Elise, South London @eliseboevenbrink
My family doesn’t really celebrate Christmas properly and one year I found myself spending the day with just my brother. Because neither of us wanted to cook, we bought two of Germany’s finest frozen pizzas (Dr Oetker). This was way less stressful than putting a lot of pressure into a big meal so I’ve kept the tradition going ever since. I’m now coming up to my eighth Pizza Christmas and put slightly more effort into it by making my own dough and throwing on some toppings. Pizza for Christmas is delicious, easy, almost impossible to mess up, and far better than turkey.
Hannah, Lewisham @hannahtodd92
Roasted potatoes are the glue to any Christmas feast, in my opinion. They are the perfect sponge for mopping that extra gravy that you greedily poured over everything and then panicked because the member sitting next to you only has a dribble.
My favourite food on Christmas Day,
To sample from the whole buffet,
Is those lovely Yorkshire puddings, wow,
Covered in gravy, I would like some now!
I like the name, I love the taste,
Such a crucial part, they cannot be replaced!