Catholic Recipe: Six Christmas Dinner Menus
And suddenly it is Christmas Day! Families attend Mass and hurry home to a warming late breakfast and a concerted attack on the gaily wrapped presents underneath the tree. Mother turns her thoughts toward the preparation of Christmas dinner, and she can rejoice that food customs have changed a bit since the sixteenth century. A Christmas dinner in those days was made up, in at least one recorded instance, of seventeen main dishes, sixteen other dishes, which included salads, pastries, and sweets, with bread and vegetables as additional fare!
If you plan to serve a mince pie for dessert, you will be interested in its origin. When the Crusaders came back to England, they brought with them spices from the Holy Land. These spices were added to huge pies made of meats of various kinds, minced very fine and enclosed in pastry. The pies were oblong in shape, to represent the manger. A depression was made in the top to hold a figure of the Infant Jesus, which was removed just before the pie was cut.
At last the table is set with the best linens, china, and silver, and family and guests sit down to a Christmas dinner that, though bountiful and delicious, has not overtaxed the hostess with its preparation. Here are six suggested menus for a scrumptious Christmas dinner.