European Christmas desserts

Whilst the British dig into pudding and mince pies on Christmas Day, our continental neighbours enjoy their own assortment of traditional festive treats. So if you’re looking to do something a little different this year, why not introduce some delicious European flavours to your Christmas table.

Whilst many may be forgiven for thinking that the centrepiece of an Italian Christmas are bowls filled with delicious pasta; a traditional Christmas feast in Italy involves plentiful helpings of several different desserts. The two most popular desserts are Panettone, a tall dome-shaped sweet yeast cake, baked with raisins and candied orange peel, and Pandoro, a tall star-shaped cake with a delicious brioche-like centre and lovely vanilla-butter flavour. Pandoro is cut into horizontal slices and restacked to form a Christmas tree like shape, which is then lovingly decorated with festive sprinkles and candy pieces.

Across the continent, in Germany – the birthplace of the Christmas tree – Stollen is one of the most popular festive desserts. Stollen is a dense fruit cake containing dried or candied fruit, nuts and spices and is covered with sugar, powdered sugar or icing sugar. During Christmas Stollen is called Weihnachtsstollen or Christstollen.

A French Christmas table wouldn’t be complete without a rich, chocolaty, yuletide log. Known in France as the ‘buche de Noel’, the recipe was developed in the late 1800s by a French pastry chef who was looking to pay culinary homage to the medieval practise of burning a yule log. This new, gastronomic tradition caught on in spectacular fashion. A traditional chocolate buche de Noel recipe is a vanilla Genoise cake rolled into a cylinder with the richest, homemade chocolate buttercream frosting.

In Spain, Christmas desserts are made with almonds, honey, sugar and fruit. One of the most popular Christmas desserts is turrón. A product of southern Spain’s close proximity to North Africa, Turrón is a centuries old, sweet dessert of Moorish (Arabic) descent. It was once considered so valuable that the King of Spain once warned its makers not to be so generous with it.

Traditional festive treats from around the globe can be found in our catalogue, as well as modern take on beloved British favourites. To find out more or to place on order, contact our sales team today on 0844 856 0911.