The one issue I took with department stores in America is that they did not have food halls. When it is quiet, the Selfridges Food Hall is one of my favourite places in London, and they stock some of my favourite treats and lunches for when I am on the go. So, when Selfridges got in touch with me to see if I wanted to try one of their Christmas hampers this year, which the challenge of putting together my own Christmas treat with some of the items in the hamper, I jumped at the chance. Not only would collaborating with my favourite department store be fun, but I thought it might be nice to put together something everyone can make with Christmas excess or leftovers. Hands up who gets a little sick of Christmas pudding after a few days?
So, my solution is to take the classic flavours of Christmas Pudding and Brandy Butter and turn it into something a bit lighter for the days following Christmas. Or, if you find you have too many Christmas puddings, as people I know sometimes give them as gifts, this would also be perfect. It is a Leftover Christmas Pudding, Brandy Buttercream & Bitter Marmalade Parfait. I am calling it a parfait rather than a trifle, because while soaking the whole thing in brandy was tempting, I wanted to keep on the light track, and I think the cream itself is sweet enough without adding any more indulgence post December 25th to the mix!
Selfridges were kind enough to send me their Sparkle & Celebrate Hamper (£175) which contains a Selfridges Christmas Pudding made to the original Selfridges recipe, a jar of Brandy Butter, a packet of Afternoon Tea Bags, a bag of roast coffee, a Selfridges Chocolate Selection, a jar of English Strawberry Jam, a packet of English Fudge, a Giant Selfridges Milk Chocolate Coin, a packet of Selfridges Handmade Chocolate Butter Shortbread Biscuits, a packet of Selfridges Handmade Savoury Thyme Biscuits, a Selfridges Panettone, a jar of Selfridges Piccalilli, a bottle of Prosecco and a bottle each of red and white wine. I'm sorry about the lack of my own photo, but because of logistics the hamper is in Kent while I'm in London; I just had some of the ingredients bought up to me, but I can't wait to see it! Apparently everything is very prettily done up with classic Selfridges yellow tissue paper. I also can't wait to eat what is left of it; keep your eyes open for another recipe for the hamper just before New Year, I have plans for that Panettone.
I don't really want to provide measurements for the ingredients because everyone will have different left overs and different size dishes, so instead I've included an ingredient list and some guidelines. Obviously you don't need to stick to this, play around with what you have or what you get in your own Christmas hampers and see what you come up with, just remember to check the flavour as you go along when adding ingredients.
- Leftover, or cooked as per instructions or recipe Christmas Pudding
- Brandy Butter (or Brandy Cream, it needs to have a whipped texture if you are using butter. The Selfridges version is perfect, but I know my family recipe for it would not work)
- French Creme Fraiche
- Fresh Orange Zest
- Bitter Marmalade (There is one among the Selfridges own label products range)
Beat together two parts Creme Fraiche and one part Brandy Butter until smooth. If you want to add more alcohol add a little to the cream. If I am being honest, I wanted to add a bit of a kick to the parfait pictured as it is not quite Christmas yet, so I added a good glug of vodka - the only spirit I have in my flat at the moment. Vodka did not work as well as I wanted, so I would recommend brandy here. Beat in a large pinch or two of fresh orange rind. Crumble the Christmas Pudding and layer it up with the cream and the marmalade, finishing with cream on top of your dish. Garnish with a little more orange rind, and enjoy!
What are your favourite ways to use Christmas leftovers, or for my American readers what have you been doing with your Thanksgiving leftovers? Thanks so much to Selfridges for the hamper, and for allowing me to collaborate with you!