Looking to get some inspiration around Christmas dessert

Hi all, I was wondering if anyone has some good suggestions for Christmas dessert. Here in Belgium, a cake with buttercream is very popular but not all of my guests like it...

Looking forward to your replies!

  • Posted by: CMA
  • November 15, 2021


tia December 15, 2021
My family always does a selection of homemade Christmas cookies and homemade peppermint ice cream. I use this recipe for the ice cream. https://www.davidlebovitz.com/peppermint-stick-ice-cream-with-hot-fudge-sauce-recipe-baked-brooklyn/
One nice thing is that these can all be made a few days ahead. If peppermint isn't a seasonal thing for you, maybe cinnamon ice cream?
Kelly V. November 21, 2021

Here is a roundup of our favorite Christmas Cake Recipes to give you some inspiration! https://food52.com/blog/25761-best-christmas-cake-recipes Happy Holidays!
Miss_Karen November 19, 2021
Make lemon budino. It's easy. It's delicious. It's different.
702551 November 15, 2021
The Germans have TONS of Christmas sweets. You might want to consider something from Italy like the seasonal panettone. Naturally French desserts are an excellent consideration.

You should certainly consider making something you enjoy preparing and are good at.
CMA November 15, 2021
I am really surprised by how quick I got a response from multiple people 🤯. Thank you! I see there are really great options 🤪 I will keep you updated on which dessert I will make in the end :) Christmas here I come!
AntoniaJames November 15, 2021
Another much less involved but altogether delicious holiday option: Nigella Lawson's chocolate olive oil cake. This has become a frequently requested family favorite here when an important friend who cannot have any gluten (celiac the reason) and does better with dairy free options. Here is the link: https://www.nigella.com/recipes/chocolate-olive-oil-cake . For big holiday meals, we serve it with an impromptu raspberry sauce (fresh raspberries cooked with sugar to taste) topped with a tiny scoop of rich vanilla regular dairy ice cream or vegan ice cream, as applicable. A tiny slice is all you need - perfect for ending a holiday feast.

Also, it can be made up to two days ahead of time - making it oh so convenient for a holiday celebration. ;o).
drbabs November 15, 2021
My favorite show stopping dessert is Helen Goh and Yotam Ottolenghi's rolled pavlova. https://www.latimes.com/recipe/rolled-pavlova-peaches-and-blackberries You can make the components ahead of time, and can use any fruit. His winter version is Brown Sugar Roulade with Burnt Honey Apples. Equally easy and delicious. https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1021695-brown-sugar-roulade-with-burnt-honey-apples?smid=ck-recipe-iOS-share
AntoniaJames November 15, 2021
If you’re looking for a real showstopper that most of your guests are likely not ever to have experienced, make a Paris-Brest.

I use Alice Medrich's rice flour pastry cream and for the rest, the recipe from “Cook's Illustrated,” substituting almonds for hazelnuts because we just like them better. This seriously raised the bar for Christmas desserts, when I made one a few years ago.

The “Cook's Illustrated” recipe is behind a paywall. The copyright laws prevent me from posting their recipe here. Happily, Chef June, a trusted and talented early user of Food52, posted a full recipe for Paris-Brest that I would use (in fact, I probably will use it the next time I do this): https://food52.com/recipes/39848-paris-brest Medrich’s pastry cream is sublime, so I would use that instead of ChefJune’s. Here is more about that: https://food52.com/blog/12715-your-pastry-cream-can-do-better It's worth sourcing the rice flour for this pastry cream. You can get it on Amazon quite reasonably. ;o)
AntoniaJames November 15, 2021
P.S. There are a lot of great ideas here: https://food52.com/hotline/30307-what-make-ahead-dessert-should-i-make-to-bring-to-a-weeknight-holiday-party-my-criteria-are

As you'll see, I asked a similar question a few years ago, and the Food52 community delivered! ;o)
Nancy November 15, 2021
There are a few traditional directions (borrowed from Britain abd USA), which can be started now and stored with alcohol until the day:
Fruit cake
Christmas (plum) pudding
Brandied fruits

Each can be served alone or with a side (brandy butter, whipped cream or ice cream) so people can choose if they want dairy or not.

Other choices: gingerbread cake (French, British or American versions).
Fine chocolates and fresh nuts in the shell
A dessert cheese tray with nuts, dried fruits, crackers, cookies, jam and sweet wine.

Looking forward to suggestions from others, and to hearing what you choose to serve.
Recommended by Food52