A Very Puglia Christmas | the Puglia Kitchen Christmas Menu
Italian’s love to get together. Italians love their food. Ergo Italians love to feast together.
But what came first? The love of the food or of the company? The one thing that we can be sure of is that if you had food like this - wonderfully local, fresh and seasonal, packed full of the flavour of the Pugliese sun and earth - you too would celebrate the joy of the Puglia kitchen
The two great feasts of the year are Easter and Christmas. Our typical Easter “lunch” is an easy and delicious affair. Spread over some 5 - 6 hours fitting in somewhere between 7 and 9 dishes, and definitely not a taster menu.
Our Christmas menu for Christmas Day is a celebration of the best of two cultures, and looks something like this.
Gallipoli prawn cocktail with prickly pear marie rose.
Scotch broth minestrone.
Mac and cheese al cavolfiore.
Roast capon with all the trimmings. Our chestnut and apricot stuffing uses pane di Altamura breadcrumbs with black olives and nduja, and our chipolata are wrapped with prosciutto crudo and drizzled with rosemary olive oil.
Tiramisù panettone trifle.
Mince pie pasticciotti.
Christmas cake (home baked).
Gallipoli Prawn Cocktail
Gallipoli prawns are scarlet and cook to somewhere between a soft pink and dark red. Served raw they are plump and fresh. Cooking gives them a unique sweetness.
We make our Marie Rose sauce using our prickly pear ketchup made from a blend of tomatoes, our prickly pear syrup, extra virgin olive oil, Worcestershire sauce and freshly squeezed lemon juice from the lemons in our olive grove with a sprinkle of sea salt flakes from the salt marshes of Margherita di Savoia and a heavy grind of black pepper.
Scotch Broth Minestrone
We make this as we would our usual minestrone with a soffritto and with cooked white beans. To put a kilt on it we use chicken stock instead of a Parmesan rind and dried pearl barley, peas and lentils that have been soaked for 6 hours and drained. We add sliced leaks and some shredded chicken.
Mac and Cheese al Cavolfiore | Turkey Lasagne.
Pasta al forno is the pasta dish usually always served up at a feast between the antipasti and primo piatto.
Cauliflower works incredibly well with pasta. Pasta al cavolfiore, one of our favourite Puglia recipes, is the inspiration for this Mac and Cheese.
Or we will have a turkey lasagne. This follows our usual lasagne recipe but with a turkey ragù.
Chestnut and Apricot Stuffing with Black Olives and Nduja
Olives had to find a place on our kitchen table and this sweet and savoury stuffing is perfect. We roast our own chestnuts, use apricots from our garden that we dried and preserved and use Altamura DOP bread.
Instead of wrapping them in pancetta we use prosciutto crudo.
Tiramisù Panettone Trifle
Using slices of panettone soaked in the same coffee San Marzano elixir (this is the perfect alcohol for tiramisù). If you need an alcohol free version use maple syrup.
Mince Pie Pasticciotti
Using our own mincemeat filling, this makes a perfect Christmas pasticciotto.