Review by Barb & Ron Kroll
Delia's Happy Christmas
(Ebury Press) ISBN 978-0091933067 0091933064
Holiday cooking is easy with this cookbook by Delia Smith. Christmas recipes range from traditional to modern. Delia's Happy Christmas helps you plan holiday menus and grocery shopping lists and bake do-ahead Christmas desserts, dinners and Boxing Day meals. The cookbook even includes New Year's Eve party ideas and leftover recipes.
New Year's buffet recipes
Well-organized, this holiday cookbook begins with menus, such as Christmas Day lunch and New Year's Eve holiday buffet, which feature recipes from Delia's book.
Each recipe begins with her cooking advice. In her last-minute brandied Christmas cake recipe, for example, she explains that a jar of mincemeat makes it moist.
Ingredients use British measurements, but there is a conversion chart at the back of Delia Smith's cookery book. Some recipes include garnishes, such as frosted cranberries and grapes.
More culinary tips appear in notes at the end of holiday recipes. For example, in the maple walnut cheesecake recipe, she recommends using Serr walnuts to make the carmelized walnuts.
More than 150 photos by Petrina Tinslay depict Christmas decorations and dishes, such as homemade mincemeat.
Vegetarian Christmas dishes
One chapter includes recipes for vegetarian food, such as vegetable pie and roasted red peppers stuffed with fennel.
Another chapter of the 311-page cookbook provides recipes for a Hogmanay party. The Scottish New Year's Eve recipes include partan bree (fresh crab soup), haggis pie and black bun (a spicy fruit cake).
This Delia Smith cookbook lists sources for Christmas food online, like marrons glaces (candied chestnuts) from Clement Faugier. Additional online suppliers can be found at Delia Online.
Sample holiday recipes
Italian chocolate nut Christmas cake. Chestnut cupcakes. Spiced pickled pears. Christmas chutney. Cranberry cooler. Christmas coleslaw. Pheasant terrine. Wild mushroom and walnut soup. Roast duck with cherry sauce. Salmon in champagne sauce. Hot smoked salmon pie. Parsnips with Parmesan. Sauteed caramelised fennel. Spiced cranberry and orange brulee. Chocolate chestnut log. Mince pie ice cream. Turkey and ham benedict. Festive sugar plums.
ContentsPart 1. THE PLAN
- Happiness is getting a grip early
- Armchair shopping
- Christmas lasts for 8 days
- Holiday on ice
- Just so you won't forget...
- All kinds of Christmas cakes
- Christmas puddings & others...
- Pickles, chutneys & preserves
- Drinks, mulls & party stuff
- Soups & starters
- Duck, geese & game
- Other main courses
- Celebration seafood
- A vegetarian Christmas
- Vegetables in winter
- The sweetest Christmas
- Last-minute Christmas
- The last 36 hours
- What's left?
Delia Smith books are famous in Britain, where she has appeared on many TV cookery shows.