Christmas

5 Christmas recipes that combine sweet and savoury

Real or faux tree? Chicken or turkey for lunch? Christmas is a time of many decisions. But, if there’s one choice you don’t have to make, it’s whether to have sweet or savoury dishes at your festive feast. Because, everyone knows you need both!
 
The good news is, satisfying everyone’s festive cravings doesn’t have to mean more time in the kitchen. Equal parts sweet and savoury, these mouth-watering dishes will have all of your tastebuds tingling. 
 
Read on for 5 Christmas recipes that combine sweet and savoury in the most delicious way.
 

1. Devils on horseback

Don’t let the name alarm you — this dish is a salty-sweet take on the French dish anges a cheval (angels on horseback). Dried fruit takes the place of the traditional oyster, glazed with mango chutney and wrapped in bacon.  The result is a devilishly delicious appetiser.
 
To make them, press cubes of cheese (asiago or cream cheese are popular choices) into the middle of pitted dates or prunes. Then, coat them in mango chutney, and wrap each one in a slice of rindless bacon. Secure them with a toothpick, then fry on a pan until the bacon is cooked through.


2. Brie and cranberry bites

When it comes to sweet and savoury combos, you can’t beat creamy brie and tart cranberry. Add a melt-in-your-mouth pastry and fresh rosemary and you’ve got yourself the perfect entree for your Christmas spread. These bites are not only delicious, but quick and easy to make, too.
 
You can make your own pastry from scratch, or cheat a little and grab frozen puff pastry. Place a dollop of cranberry sauce inside each square, and add a cube of brie on top. Fold up the tops of the pastry, then bake in the oven for about 10 minutes or until toasted lightly brown. Garnish each with a sprig of rosemary and serve.


3. Fig galette

This French-inspired dish truly combines the best of both worlds. Not only does it combine sweet with savoury, but it has the shape of a crepe but the crusty casing of a pie. Filled with fresh fig, tangy goats cheese and sweet honey, it’s an explosion of festive flavour inside a buttery pastry.
 
Make the dough by combining flour, sugar, salt and butter and knead it by hand, or mix in a food processor. Roll into a 10-inch disk to make the shape of the galette. Mix goat’s cheese and honey in a bowl, then spoon into the centre of the galette. Arrange the figs on top of the goats cheese, then fold up the edge of the pastry. Combine egg yolk and water and brush over the galette and sprinkle with icing sugar. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, until golden crispy.
 
Want a simpler version of this dish, but with all the same flavour? Drizzle figs with honey, served with a morsel of goats cheese and secured with a toothpick for a bite-sized treat.



4. Pumpkin chocolate babka

Traditionally served in Eastern-European communities in times of celebration, babka is the perfect vessel for a bittersweet treat. This one combines a fluffy, pumpkin base with layers of chocolate, swirled into a braided bread.
 
To prepare the brioche-like pastry, combine warm milk, yeast, sugar and flour and allow to sit until foamy. Add pumpkin puree, butter, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar and knead into a dough mixture. Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours. Meanwhile, prepare the chocolate mix by heating bittersweet or dark chocolate and cacao powder over a saucepan. Once the dough is set, roll into a rectangle and spread the chocolate mix evenly across the top.  Roll the edges into a tight log, then cut lengthwise. 
 
With the cut sides facing up, cross each piece over each other along the lengths of the dough to create the braided pattern.  Allow the dough to rise, then bake for 30 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when you can insert a skewer into the babka and it comes out mostly clean.


5. Pecan choc sea-salt cookies

Everyone loves cookies at Christmas time! Not only do they make a great post-lunch dessert, but they’re also perfect for snacking on Boxing Day and beyond. These ones pair the buttery, nutty flavor of pecan with sea salt and decadent chocolate chips.
 
To make them, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt salt and whisk to combine. Whisk egg and vanilla in a bowl, then combine with the mix. Stir in chocolate chips and chopped pecans. Scoop a small portion of the mixture into each cup in a cookie tray and bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, you’re ready to serve your perfectly soft-yet-chewy cookies!

Whether your Christmas guests are more sweet or savoury fans, these versatile dishes are sure to hit the spot. Just don’t be surprised when they request them again for next year!

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