I’m eternally stoked to be connected with a family that embraces the whimsical theme meal as much as I do. As much as I love Downton Abbey, it was actually NOT my idea to have a Boxing Day Feast in honor of the show’s third season, soon to begin airing stateside (and the spoiler-laden season 3 Christmas Special, for those who were caught up through creative means). This was the brainchild of my sisters Kate and Amy, also avid Downton watchers, food enthusiasts, and costume facilitators. I was merely happy to oblige with a menu:
Calvados-Glazed Roast Duck with Apple Sauce
Bubble & Squeak Patties (with Brussels sprouts)
Cornish Pasties with Butternut Squash, Pine Nuts & Sage
Sticky Toffee Ebelskiver Parfaits
- For starters, I first thought a goose would be in order, but then settled on duck – and managed to find one (if in frozen form) in Provo the day of the feast. Thanks Sprouts! The Downton Abbey Cooks blog provided a fabulous-sounding Titanic-era Calvados glazed duck recipe. Alas, it turns out that Calvados was $46 a bottle, so I substituted a nice hard cider and was pleased with the results.
- Next up, a bubble & speak recipe. A little ironic given that bubble & squeak is more of a potato-based template for leftovers than it is a formal recipe in itself, but Serious Eats provided a great version in patty form. No leftovers required!
- Cornish pasties seemed like an essential component, plus adding a vegetarian option for our veggie guests, and the butternut squash pasties from The Kitchn were a perfect solution. Luckily, there was enough filling leftover that I filled a few ramekins and baked it all by itself. Totally worth trying in both forms!
- Mushy peas. Who better to turn to than Nigella for a British comfort food classic? Alas, my copy of How To Eat was not on hand, so we found a rendition courtesy of Indulge and Enjoy.
- And for dessert, I envisioned sticky toffee pudding in parfait form – and as it happened, Donna and Jim gave all the siblings an ebelskiver pan with an accompanying book for Christmas. Said book featured a recipe for Sticky Toffee Ebelskivers, and the result was delish.
I can heartily recommend any of the above recipes – they all turned out superbly. From the lords and ladies of Kelly Manor to yours, we wish you Happy Viewing!