There’s nothing quite like the holidays to remind us of the important things in life: taking some time to relax, reunite with friends and family, and — most importantly — gather around a table to share and enjoy festive, delicious food.
This holiday dinner season, our gift to you is a specially selected menu of seasonal recipes fit for any celebration. We hope you enjoy!
The Seasonal Starter
Although there appears to be some international debate as to when in a meal one should serve salad (first or last?), we think this colourful kale, pear, and squash salad from zero-waste and zero-hunger advocate Aimée Wimbush-Bourque is the perfect way to start a festive meal all while celebrating the best produce the season has to offer.
We’ve got two main dishes to offer you in this menu. Depending on dietary preferences or the number of people that will be gathering around the table, you may be more inclined toward preparing one or the other (or both)!
Megha’s colorful curry
While New Dehli-based chef Megha Kohli‘s recipe for Mulligatawny curry may not be traditionally associated with end-of-year festivities, we think its warming and earthy ingredients make it a perfect addition to any winter celebration.
Jamie’s free-range turkey
Jamie Oliver‘s simple recipe for a cranberry, bacon and thyme turkey is a classic during the winter holidays. Sustainably-sourced meat is best, of course — and don’t be afraid to get creative with the leftovers! With environmentally resource-heavy meals like this, there’s no room for waste.
The Intercontinental Condiment
Radhika Kandelwhal knows that when it comes to adopting global recipes, there’s nothing more fun than adapting them to local ingredients! Her roselle chutney makes for an exciting and #planetaryhealth-y cranberry sauce alternative.
Roselle Chutney Recipe
- 250g Roselle flowers (remove petals from the calyces, save the seeds and the calyces — the green bud)
- 1 bulb of garlic
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 5 dried red chillies (I sometimes replace chillies with timur)
- 2 tbsp channa dal/urad daal
- 1 pinch of hing
- 1 tbsp jaggery
- Salt to taste
- Wash the petals of the roselle flowers thoroughly in running cold water.
- On medium heat, roast all the ingredients together except the roselle flowers.
- Once roasted, cool the ingredients and then grind to a paste consistency.
- Using the same pan, steam the roselle flowers until tender (2-3 mins). Roselle is very gelatinous and turns to paste super fast. Add the ground ingredients and powdered jaggery to the pan, salt to taste, cool and serve.
- The chutney should be tart, sweet, spicy. Serve as a side or use as a spread. The chutney stays good in the refrigerator for over 3 weeks.
Zero waste tip:
Do not discard the calyces or seeds of the roselle flower. These too can make an amazing chutney. You can use gongura/roselle leaves and the seeds to make a pesto style dip.
The calyces of Roselle can be used for jellies (highly gelatinous) and sauces (Radhika does this for her Thanksgiving feast every year instead of cranberry).
Two Delightful Desserts
We just couldn’t resist sharing these two gorgeous recipes for dessert. Both remind us a bit of winter’s snow, and we think their simplicity makes them extra exquisite.
Max’s cocoa coconuts
Rupy’s festive fruits
Rupy Aujla’s recipe for roasted cinnamon apricots with vanilla and orange yoghurt is versatile in two ways: not only can you get creative with which fruit you choose to roast, but any leftovers can also be used towards making a tasty breakfast the next day!
We hope this menu of seasonal inspiration serves as a helpful guide for your festivities this winter. As always, we encourage you to play around with ingredients and adapt recipes to what is available, affordable, and attractive to you — all while keeping health and sustainability in mind.
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