December

At first you might think “everything has stopped growing, so there won’t be any seasonal foods in December”.  However it’s a time when traditionally we’d enjoy hot pots made with stews and stored root vegetables
“Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat” says the old nursery rhyme.  Historically we’d feed animals roots and grains and eat more meat at this time of the year.  Foods, like Stargazy Pie (made with hole small fish), are also traditionally served in December.

Talking of pies, did you know that mince pies originally contained mutton?.  Oliver Cromwell banned mince pies and when they were subsequently reintroduced people stopped putting meat into the mincemeat!

However there’s lots of dishes vegetarians can enjoy at this time of the year.

chestnuts

When we can smell chestnuts roasting, we think Christmas is not long away.

Brussels sprouts can taste sweeter and better after a frost.  According to this article  “The frequent freezing and thawing of the vegetable leads to complex carbohydrates breaking down into simple sugars. The sprouts also tighten so they are less likely to become soggy when cooked”.

Parsnips are another food associated with Christmas.

Many varieties of British apples and pears are at their best about now, sweeter than when they were picked, but still crisp.

Pickles, made earlier in the year from surplus vegetables, should be good now. Also it’s about the time to try damson or sloe gins if you made any.

Some food needs to be imported, and in December clementines and cranberries bring colour and vitamin C to our diet.

Some Web Links

Have a look on the web for more ideas:
www.bbc.co.uk/food/seasons/december

www.bbcgoodfood.com/seasonal-calendar/month/december

www.eattheseasons.co.uk/december.php

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