Planning party after party of yuletide celebrations this Christmas season in Stockholm for family and friends from different continents across the globe? Then nothing draws more oohs and aahs than serving each round of celebratory fare with yummylicious special occasion dishes whipped up during festivities reveled in various parts of the world.
From Scandinavia to other parts of Europe, from Latin America to the Middle East to China, from modern twists to the time-honoured to truly ancient recipes, Your Living City’s picks of festive cookbooks has something special from each continent to keep your X’mas guests and loved ones coming back for more!
Cookbook: Scandinavian Christmas
Author: Trine Hahnemann
With The Scandinavian Cookbook and The Nordic Diet under her belt, Danish restaurateur and columnist Trine Hahnemann’s Scandinavian Christmas celebrates this festive occasion in Scandinavian style.
From the first Advent Sunday to the end of December, Hahnemann serves up an abundance of festive recipes for brunches, cocktail and tea parties, lunches and dinners for each day over the yuletide holidays.
With traditional goodies to delicious modern dishes to regional specialties to tantalize family and friends, enjoy endless rounds of skål!
Cookbook: Chinese Feasts & Festivals – A Cookbook
Author: S.C. Moey
Publisher: Periplus Editions (HK) Ltd.
The Chinese calendar bursts with joyous occasions and numerous festivals celebrated with eating, entertaining and making merry, sometimes with homage paid to gods and ancestors.
In full colour, Chinese Feasts & Festivals brilliantly addresses Chinese cuisine’s more formal aspects, with foods in a combo of flavours and symbols for wealth, happiness, luck and prosperity – all eaten with earthly pleasure and spiritual celebration.
Explaining the significance of each dish served at festivities like the Dragon Boat Festival, the Mooncake Festival and the Chinese New Year, Penang-based food writer S.C. Moey’s cookbook shares over 50 delicious recipes.
Cookbook: Vivek Singh’s Indian Festival Feasts
Author: Vivek Singh
Publisher: Absolute Press
India seems to celebrate a festival each day of the year, often with gastronomic festive cuisine. With chapters including the globally celebrated Indian festivals like Holi, Onam and Diwali, head chef of London’s acclaimed Cinnamon Club, Vivek Singh covers the diversity of religions and cultures across India while giving insight into the significance of its food.
With accompanying photography further bringing alive the beauty and vibrancy of history and culture surrounding each colourful festival, Vivek brings his own unique touch to recipes most traditionally associated with Indian festivities.
With the best-selling Monet’s Table as inspiration, the pictorially accompanied account in the 1994 published Frida’s Fiestas are many important and happy events in the life of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo.
We learn of Frida and how she welcomed people into her home; celebrating birthdays, saints days, baptisms and all the popular holidays – like the Posadas (at Christmas), the Day of the Dead, the Mexican national holidays, and a gala celebration called “The Meal of the Broad Tablecloths”.
It divinely includes a scrapbook assembled by her stepdaughter of recipes for more than 100 traditionally Mexican dishes that Diego loved to eat and Frida loved to prepare for family and friends with her characteristic enthusiasm for all the pleasures of life.
With seasonal Israel deeply rooted in ancient rituals and biblical commandments, Jews the world over celebrate Jewish holidays by reconnecting with spirituality by enjoying tasty foods laden with symbolic meaning.
Phyllis and Miriyam Glazer‘s The Essential Book of Jewish Festival Cooking gives rich insight into the rhythms of Jewish calendar year’s link to seasonal signs of nature and its produce; addressing why Jews eat what they eat on important days, like the Passover, the Shavuot and the Purim.
Providing over 200 tempting traditional recipes with fresh contemporary twists covering major Jewish holidays and feast days, the cookbook includes menus and tips for creative and meaningful holiday entertaining; illuminating their origins, traditions, and seasonal and biblical significance.
Cookbook: Feasts: From the Sunday Times no.1 bestselling author of Persiana & Sirocco
Author: Sabrina Ghayour
Publisher: Octopus Publishing Group
With Persiana an award winner and Sirocco a number 1 best seller, food writer Sabrina Ghayour’s Feasts focuses on Middle Eastern dishes made for sharing at special occasions during breakfast, brunch and various feasts over the year.
From quick fixes to seasonal feastings to vegetarian dishes to comfort food to adventurous desserts, this golden girl of Persian cookery’s huge selection of beautifully spiced and hence flavour packed recipes joyously celebrate gathering family and friends round a table laden with gastronomic delights.
Cookbook: Polish Holiday Cookery
Author: Robert Strybel
Publisher: Hippocrene Books
A companion book to his Polish Heritage Cookery, Robert Strybel’s Polish Holiday Cookery distils typical Polish celebrations on Christmas Eve, Easter, weddings and year round festivities, along with the associated celebratory foods.
Through more than 3 decades as correspondent for the Polish-American Press and as Reuters staff in Warsaw, Poland, Strybel has accumulated more than 400 traditional favourite recipes for Polish holiday fare.
With a lexicon of basic foods and culinary concepts, ingredients and procedures, and sample menus, this cookbook covers cooking tips, serving suggestions, and ideas for banquets, picnics, dinners, and parties, ensuring that we have a selection of dishes for any occasion.
Cookbook: Philippine Fiesta Recipes
Author: Leonarda R. Belmonte
Publisher: National Book Store
A gathering of festive fares both Filipino- and foreign-influenced, the selection of fiesta recipes pays homage to the diversity that makes up the cultures of the modern Philippines.
Drawing from the country’s immigration patterns and historical development, this 1987 published cookbook reflects the gastronomic preferences of native Filipina, Chinese settlers and Eurasian descendants – particularly those of Indian ancestry, after Spanish, Japanese and American occupations brought additional Arabic Islamic, Catholic Italian and Mexican culinary inspirations.
From soups, salads, and meat, noodles and rice dishes to desserts and teatime treats, from well liked recipes from the Bicol region to the Mountain Provence to Visayas to Mindanao and so much more, cooking aficionados are given a wide range of choices of what to prepare, and when and how they should be cooked and served.
Cookbook: Louisiana Sampler: Recipes from Our Fairs & Festivals
Author: John D. Folse
Publisher: Chef John Folse & Co
Chef, restaurateur, and culinary radio and TV host John Folse’s Louisana Sampler gives insight into treasured nuggets of the Bayou State in the United States of America; from its customs and its people to the colours and traditions of its people’s love to celebrate.
From the State’s wide variety of fairs and festivals, Folse brings us his all time favourite – Loisiana’s love for a good time and great food.
Sharing a glimpse of its 26 fairs and festivals, and the towns hosting them, along with the events’ unique attractions, his 1996 published cookbook brims with 250 recipe pages and colour photographs of its celebrations and fabulous food; offering a “Taste of Louisiana”.
Cookbook: Celtic Folklore Cooking
Author: Joanne Asala
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
Joanna Asala’s Celtic Folklore Cooking is a treasury of delectable recipes for select foods served at Sabbats and Esbats celebrations: the festivals and ritual ceremonies Witches and Wiccans celebrate with music, dance, games, food and drink.
The American author of more than 25 books on folklore, fairy tales, cooking, and traditional customs took 4 trips to Ireland and Britain, visiting Scotland and Wales too, in her search for people who still cooked in their ancestors’ traditions, from recipes passed down from generation to generation.
The resultant 1998 published book is rich in Celtic tradition and filled with more than 200 tempting traditional dishes for daily meals or special celebrations; all nestled among colourful food-related proverbs, poems, tales, customs and folk wisdom.
Each recipe lists associated ancient and modern holidays to complement the season; offering us unique celebration dishes as tasty today as they were hundreds, even thousands of years ago.
Photo and Information credits: The respective cookbooks and publishers.
Feature photo credit: Simon Coultas.