At Christmas, many traditions are celebrated and the Christmas menu is an important part of it.
Here, we explain you how to prepare a traditional French Christmas menu. Nevertheless, the best thing you can do is to taste it in a restaurant at any city you can reach with our Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation trains.
MERRY CHRISTMAS and bon Appétit!
Toasts with tapenade
You should start the abundant Christmas menu with an appetizer -a small toast with caviar or smoked salmon- and combine it with a liqueur or a crémant, a typical French sparkling wine.
Oysters and Foie Gras
Christmas dishes vary regionally but the Foie Gras of supreme quality will never be missing on any table.
Seafood dishes such as oysters, lobsters and crabs are also very common ingredients at the Christmas table. And there is nothing better than to serve it with a good dry white wine.
Examples of traditionnal Christmas dishes
Duck, pheasant or the classic roasted turkey are Christmas classics. They are usually accompanied with mashed chestnuts or potatoes.
Also some wild hunt dishes, such as deer or wild boar are served in some French regions. Cranberry sauce, roasted chestnuts, rice or wild mushrooms are normally served with meat.
Vegetables that are usually served are green beans and gratin dauphinois, which is the French Alps version of gratin potatoes.
A good table of cheeses should not be missing on any French table and it is traditionally accompanied with salad. In a good assiette de fromages there cannot miss the Brie, the Camembert, the Chevrottin, the Crottin of Chavignol, the Roquefort, the Comté and the Beaufort. And there is nothing better than to serve these excellent French cheeses with a sweet white wine from Sauternes.
Bûche de Noël
To finish the French Christmas meal, you should taste a delicious Bûche de Noël. This is the top one traditional dessert in France. This Christmas "trunk" with sponge cake is filled with cream and rolled to obtain a cylinder. The sponge cake is normally filled with butter cream, chocolate, coffee or praline, but you can also find options, where also the cream, the filling and the ornament are modified, and some are even prepared with marzipan or ice cream. The origin of the Bûche de Noël comes from the Christmas tradition of burning a log of firewood to celebrate the winter solstice and to have a new year full of light. However, during the nineteenth century, when stoves replaced chimneys, the custom had fallen out of use and the tradition of the Bûche de Noël started, with the idea that it should resemble to the original trunk. A true success!
Another classic sweet is Nougat, which is also very typical for the Spanish cuisine. This French sweet made with egg white, honey and almond is very similar to the Spanish nougat both in appearance and flavour, although its texture is softer. The most famous is the Nougat of Montélimar, located at the Drôme department.
We recommend you to enjoy your Christmas menu at any of our French destinations, which you can reach at high-speed with us.