Christmas Veg

There’s an advert on tele at the moment which toys with idea that everyone has a favourite part of Christmas dinner.  Some people love the turkey the most; other lust after the roast potatoes; lots – I know – go wild over the bacon-wrapped sausages.   Personally, I swoon over the indulgent nature of the vegetables. 

At Christmas honey is paired with long roots; cream with tubby roots; brown sugar with brassicas and butter with everything.  Vegetables have never been so impure!  But because it’s only one day in the year and because I’m fairly sure I don’t consume anywhere near the 7,000 calories which is supposedly the nation’s average, I’m not going to bother looking for lower fat/calorie alternatives this year or any other.  Bring on the sticky parsnips!  🙂

The following three dishes are the vegetables which will be adorning our table this year.  Yum yum.

 Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips

(serves 6 as a side)

3 big parsnips, peeled, halved length ways and quartered

3 big carrots, peeled, halved length ways and quartered

1 heaped tablespoon butter

1 heaped tablespoon honey


  • Pre-heat the oven to 200oC.
  • Melt the butter and honey in a pan and season well.
  • Lay out the carrots and parsnips on a baking tray and drizzle with the butter/honey mixture.  Mix well with hands to ensure the veg are thoroughly coated.
  • Roast for 30 mins, turning occasionally.

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Chestnuts

Recipe at:  I use organic streaky bacon rather than panchetta and, being a masochist, fresh chestnuts rather than vacum-packed.

Spiced Red Cabbage

4 tblspn brown sugar

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

Zest of one lemon

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tspn nutmeg

3 cloves

1kg red cabbage, heart removed, sliced thinly

2 red onions, sliced thinly

2 large cooking apples, cored and chopped finely

50g butter

200ml red wine

150ml water

  • Mix the sugar, spices, zest, garlic and seasoning. 
  • Layer the butter, veg and spiced sugar in a heavy based pot.
  • Pour over the wine and water.  Top with blobs of butter.
  • Place over a low heat and cook slowly for 3 hours, stirring very occasionally.
  • Season to taste.

18 thoughts on “Christmas Veg

  1. Ywrites – Hello and welcome! How long have I been cooking for? Only about 4 years now. I cooked before that but I wasn’t a passionate cook. In the last few years it’s taken over my life!

  2. Hey Wendy–I roast the parsnips and carrots with honey too, but I add rosemary, and wow–so good! Those brussels sprouts with bacon sound swoon-worthy indeed.

    I cannot wait for break to come. 1 week and 3 days left. You must be nearing vacation too. Isn’t it wonderful to look forward to?

  3. your vegetables look so lovely – the sprouts remind me of Scottish winters (sigh)! we always lots of great vegie dishes at Christmas dinner too which makes it a treat for me.

  4. Valli – Thanks!

    Lucy – I was perplexed by your salad comment at first then remembered what season it is down there! 🙂

    Christina – One week and one day. And counting…

    Johanna – I always go totally overboard with the veg on christmas day. It’s worth it!

    Susan – I wondered who that was! The caramelised bits definitely are the best. 🙂

  5. Mmm. I think the veggies are my favourite part too. Or maybe the various stuffings we always make (is that odd?). Thoe honeyed roots have my mouth watering and I’m keen to jazz up the sprouts this year as I’m not that keen on them. That looks like a good recipe! And red cabbage too? How divine. I went to a wedding this weekend where the meal consisted of local sausages and mash with onion gravy and braised red cabbage – I was in heaven!

  6. Wendy, I love the idea that you have a category for “Christmas” because it makes it sound like you will be posting lots more. I am so looking forward to seeing what else you cook.

  7. Antonia – Sounds like a great wedding meal! Too often it’s dry chicken. And the variety of stuffings isn’t odd. We’re having chestnut stuffing and sage and onion stuffing this year. 🙂

    Cynthia – I think you could be right. 🙂

    Shona – Will definitely be posting SOME more about Christmas but I must admit my turkey recipe and gravy are from Nigella! 🙂

    Amanda – You’re very welcome! Not sure which one is my favourite. They all are in different ways.

  8. Wendy, have you been spying on my Xmas menu? This EXACTLY what I’m serving with my turkey! With the addition of some roasted beetroot and squash too. Can’t wait!


  9. Pingback: Pre-Christmas Christmas Dinner « A Wee Bit of Cooking

  10. Pingback: International Recipe Advent Calendar - Lexiophiles

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s