No need to list the main festivities for December – Christmas and New Year seem to take over the whole month, and, foodwise there’s a focus on Brussels sprouts, chestnuts, cranberries, venison, satsumas… and … the king of cheeses… Stichelton. But there are other cheeses which are also good at this time of year, Chevrotin des Aravis, Comté, Epoisses and an aged Gruyère to mention just a few.

We won’t mention turkey which is not really a very interesting bird to eat… but we will mention black pudding:

“The human beings who have been able to resist the sanguinolent puddings of the hog are few indeed. In France, among the middle classes, it is considered a sacred duty to eat them on Christmas eve, after returning from the midnight mass. The English do not make much of Christmas eve, but these black puddings are a fair excuse for making more of it. Only it is better to eat them not in the French but in the Flemish style. The French eat them as they are, the Flemings with a companion dish of baked apples. It corresponds with the English plan of taking apple sauce with pork or goose.”

E S Dallas, Kettner’s Book of the Table, 1877


Food in season in December: