all Christmas classics at a glance (from red wine sauce to baking scallops)

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It’s every home cook’s nightmare: when you’re preparing Christmas dinner, you get a spontaneous blackout. Help, how do you make ragout again? gravy? Red wine sauce? And are the stewed pears good or not? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered . In this list with Culy Christmas Basics you will find all the classics for Christmas at a glance.

That’s how it really is a  Merry Christmas .

How can I make red wine sauce?

Delicious with venison steak or other good meat: red wine sauce! And of course you prefer to make it yourself. But uh, how?

In addition to red wine, you’ll also need shallots, bay leaf, thyme, butter, beef stock, and a splash of balsamic vinegar. You can read here how to proceed:

Do you want To make the sauce in advance? Make sure that the butter solidifies in the fridge, so that the sauce will harden a bit. Before eating, heat the sauce in a pan over low heat for about 10 minutes; all the butter will melt again.

Making gravy without packets and bags, SOS!

Are you going on a British tour with a classic  roast  for Christmas dinner? Then homemade gravy (or  gravy , if you want to stay in style) can’t be missing. For a simple gravy you only need butter, flour and stock.

Melt the butter in a pan over low heat and add the flour all at once. Stir with a whisk until the flour is absorbed by the butter and fry for a while so that the flour is cooked. Then, while stirring, add the stock little by little until you have the desired thickness. You can also season with fresh herbs.

Prefer to make gravy from the leftover fat from roast meat or poultry? You can read how to do that here:

Help, my butter is too hard

Many sweet recipes call for room temperature butter: soft, but not melted. How do you take care of that if you forgot to take your butter out of the fridge on time?

Culy has the tip: grate!

How do I make mimosas for Christmas brunch?

Mimosa is a cocktail consisting of sparkling wine (preferably champagne) and orange juice. You only need those two things! Make sure both are cold. Fresh orange juice is of course the best.

The rule of thumb with mimosa is that you use equal parts alcohol and citrus juice. Exactly how many ml that is depends on the size of your glass, but with a measuring cup you can ensure that the ratio is nice 50/50. Pour the wine into the glass first, then the juice and do not stir (otherwise the bubbles will come out).

Baking scallops, how do I do that?

Baking scallops takes very little time; ideal! But it is important that you always stand by it.

To start, pat the scallops dry with kitchen paper and season with salt and pepper. Then heat the butter in a frying pan and let it bubble until the butter turns brown.

Fry the scallops in the butter for one to two minutes on each side, spooning the butter over them continuously. For example, serve them with pea puree:

What are easy desserts for Christmas?

Easy peasy , that’s what you’re looking for. No worries! There is also plenty of choice in terms of easy desserts. What did you think about…

  • Ottolenghi . coffee mousse
  • Raspberry fool with pistachios
  • Sundae with pretzels and caramel
  • Chocolate mousse with gingerbread crumb
  • The easiest puff pastry fruit pie ever
  • Quick dessert with fruit and chatter heads
  • Beer sabayon with caramelized pear & speculoos
  • Gingerbread trifle in glasses

Easy doesn’t have to taste simple!

header coffee mousse ottolenghi

How can I make ragout?

Are you going for the classic pasties filled with ragout? Good choice! Whether you go for a chicken, beef or mushroom ragout: our basic recipe always works .

As with gravy, a ragout starts with making a roux . It consists of equal parts melted butter and flour, which you ‘bake’ together for a few minutes. It should be an even mass that separates from the pan. Pour the still hot stock into the roux, stirring until you have almost the desired thickness.

Season the ragout with parsley, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and cream. Cut chicken or other meat into pieces, add to the ragout and keep warm over low heat. You can check the exact amounts in the recipe.

Still unsure? You may find our tips useful:

Help, how cold should bubbles be for drinks?

Have you brought a nice glass of sparkling wine into your house for your Christmas drink? Super festive! But, uh, how do you actually serve it? Temperatures that are too cold suppress the flavours, but if you serve a sparkling  wine  too ‘warm’ you will miss the fresh accent of the wine. 

So how do you find the right balance? If you put your wine in the fridge in the morning, it’s perfect if you want to open it in the afternoon. A refrigerator is on average around 4 degrees, but the bubble will automatically reach the right drinking temperature (7 to 8 degrees) when you take it out of the fridge and pour it at room temperature.

When are my stewed pears good?

Stewed pears must first be cooked before you can eat them, otherwise the pear will not be edible. Once the pears are peeled and sliced, rinse them. Place the pears in a pan, just cover them with water and put the pan on the fire.

Let the stewed pears cook on the lowest possible heat. Cook stewed pears until they are soft and red in color. The pears are often ready after an hour, but after about 2 to 4 hours of cooking they are also nicely red. Patience is a virtue, they say.

The very best indicator, however, is the taste. Check it after 2 or 3 hours, to make sure your pears are perfect. And the best recipe for stewed pears? Of course you will find that on Culy.

Stewed pears with Licor 43 and cinnamon ice cream

Vegetarians are coming to visit, which vegetarian Christmas recipes should I have?

Don’t worry, vegetarian Christmas recipes abound. You can find your inspiration in these lists:

  • 9 x the best vegetarian appetizers for Christmas
  • 32 x inspiration for a vegetarian starter at Christmas
  • The best veggie main dishes for Christmas
  • Recipes for a delicious vegetarian Christmas menu (which you can also make vegan!)
  • Culy’s vegetarian Christmas menu: 6 dishes without meat

You can’t really go wrong with desserts, although you might want to skip the gelatin in, for example, bavarois .

How do I make the perfect gin and tonic?

The perfect gin and tonic is heavenly, but you just have to get lucky with it. Or not? We have the perfect proportions for you. Take: 1 part gin (30-50 ml), 3 parts tonic (90-150 ml), ice cubes and garnish (such as fresh basil, cucumber, lime, cinnamon and/or apple). You can find everything about our favorite gins and tonics here:

Not a fan of gin and tonic? These cocktails also go well with Christmas :

  • Negroni
  • Espresso martini
  • whiskey sour
  • Gin with rosemary and pomegranate
  • Cocktail with orange brûlée
  • Classic old fashioned

Source: Culy by
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