Christmas is around the corner. Every country, every community has a different way of celebrating Christmas. Besides decorations, prayers, Santas, gifts and jingle bells, food has a prime place in every household. Christmas delicacies typical to each place is a treat to enjoy in its own way. It can be traditional or unorthodox or fusion tastes. But everyone likes to enjoy sumptuous food with family, preferably at one’s own home. When these are cooked at home and served in the traditional way, the ambience becomes so Christmassy. Like all other festivals in Kerala, Christmas is welcomed and celebrated by everyone. Food is central to all celebrations; special Kerala Christmas recipes tune the mood of the event. Let us take a closer look at some of the more common items served during Christmas season.
The Kerala Christmas recipes call for homemade fizzy and sweet drinks. Many households during this season will have their own preparations of wines. In Kerala, usually, the homemade wines are prepared with either gooseberry, rose apple, nutmeg, ginger or pineapple. A glass of wine with appam and mappas will give the ‘kick’ you need to sit through the rest of the meal.
Duck Mappas and Appam
This combination could be the best starter you could indulge in before the main course is served. Appam is one of the more common food items in Kerala. Made of rice powder batter, this fluffy, round pancake is best enjoyed with duck/chicken/egg curry or veg korma.
The mild and coconut-based curry that will tempt you over and over again is duck mappas. Freshly squeezed coconut milk along with other spices provides a unique flavour to mappas. Along with cubed pieces of duck include spices like ginger, turmeric, chilli powder and crushed black pepper. A mild sweet taste of coconut milk perfectly blended with black pepper essence top the flavours. The combination of Appam and Mappas is one of the best and special Kerala Christmas recipes. Bridle your temptation (if you can) after two appams, it is just a starter!
Kerala Beef Biryani
It is an exotic dish complete with typical Kerala spices and minced with chicken/beef/mutton/seafood. Spices rich, flavour-full, the meal is really filling. (But, don’t overindulge, there are other dishes too.) Special rice is used to cook biryani. Cooked with a blend of spices like cinnamon, clove, star aniseed, chopped pineapple among others, it is a treat in itself. Beef is specially cooked adding ingredients like shallots, green chilli, ginger, garlic, tomato and carrot cubes. Commonly available spices like fennel, turmeric, black pepper, cumin, nutmeg and cardamom add extra flavour. Layer after layer beef is mixed with rice adding, sliced onion, mint leaves and coriander leaves, sautéed cashew nuts and raisins. A bit heavy you think?
For people from Kerala, special days are incomplete without seafood items. Prawns are easily available in most parts of Kerala. You get it cleaned from shops or seaside vendors. Marinate them with turmeric, garlic & ginger paste, pepper, turmeric and chilli powder with other spices. Dip them in corn starch and egg white before frying them in coconut oil. The crispy, zesty, delicate prawns are sure to add zing to the main course.
Crab or squid roast is a popular item too.
Those who have been to Angamaly area in Ernakulum district may have tasted the special mango curry therein. Although mango curry is common all over Kerala, the preparation here is different. Main ingredients being raw mango and coconut milk, it is one of the authentic Kerala Christmas recipes. In fact for any occasions.
Usually, it is prepared in a clay pot. Add chopped shallots, ginger, green chillies and curry leaves to the pot. Turmeric, coriander and chilli powders follow to add flavour. Sliced mangoes and thin coconut milk blend the whole mixture well. Once boiled a bit, thick coconut milk is added while stirring perfecting the consistency of the gravy. Seasoning is done in coconut oil adding mustard seeds. It is usually a good combination with rice and a taste you will savour for long.
The less spicy, more stew-like, appealing Karimeen Molly is one of the finest and savoury Kerala Christmas recipes. Among the several fish curry recipes from Kerala with delightful flavours like spicy, tangy or pungency, Karimeen Molly stands out. Pearl spot fish or Karimeen is usually used to prepare this curry. Common ingredients like green chilli, ginger, garlic, and turmeric and pepper powder are used. The creamy rich, mild flavour difference is brought about by adding three layers of coconut milk. Not a fan of spicy fish curries? This is for you.
Country Chicken Curry
Country chicken is not fleshy as broiler one; but it tastes really succulent if prepared well. Onion, Ginger garlic paste, Kashmir chilli powder and tomatoes provide the thick gravy for this curry. Spices like turmeric, coriander, pepper and mustard seeds add zing to the appearance and flavours. If it is prepared in clay pots using coconut oil, the taste becomes just incomparable. It can be enjoyed with roti, chapati or naan too.
Pork and raw banana roast
A special combination that may not be common everywhere. Some prefer tapioca or yam too with the meat. Well, let us stick to raw banana. Both meat and banana sliced in cubes are boiled well with minimum masalas. The combination then is sautéed well in ginger, garlic, green chilli, onion and curry leaves and other spices. The spicy yet delicate taste is mouthwatering.
An easy, tasty, traditional Kerala recipe that goes well with veg or non-veg menus. It is a combination of finely chopped red onions, green chili, tomatoes and curry leaves mixed in lemon juice or vinegar. Adding coconut milk gives it special appearance and flavor.
Pineapples anyone? Your tummy will thank you, if you have a few pieces.
Merry Christmas to you all
A Travel enthusiast and Foodie, craving to explore the intricate beauty of nature and its gift of delectable treats. Pens down his thoughts and experiences to present a delightful journey for his readers