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Add a Pinch of Great British Baking to Your Holiday Feast


By Marissa Blahnik


The upcoming New Year is reason enough to be planning a get together, whether it’s for the night before or the morning after. But the days between now and then are just as likely to inspire a gathering.


If you’re anything like me, these small celebrations are the perfect opportunity to try out new recipes. Why not experiment on your unsuspecting guests? Using recipes from a trusted source like “The Great British Baking Show” can provide a little bit of a safety net if you’re not feeling too daring. You could even stream the episodes while you cook for moral support.

Image Source: Mark Bourdillon/Love Productions


Here are a collection of delicious sounding dishes from the most recent season, courtesy of PBS Food, that should be a hit no matter the occasion.


Before you jump in, two pro tips: caster sugar is superfine granulated sugar also known as bar sugar or baking sugar in the U.S. You can make your own in a pinch with a food processor or coffee grinder. And you can reference this handy website to convert the recipes from British Kitchen Units to U.S. measurements.


Ring in the day


Croque Monsier Kites


This little breakfast treat had me at the words “pancetta” and “mushrooms.” The recipe is broken into four parts but don’t be daunted by the lengthy ingredient or step list. There’s nothing too exotic or complex in there. It does require a dough hook, but odds are you or someone you know received a mixer with a hook attachment as a wedding gift and it’s been collecting dust ever since. Break it out and channel your inner Mary Berry.


Lace Pancakes

If you’re intimidated by the croques, give this eye-catching twist on an old standby a try. All you need is a squeeze bottle and a little creativity! Instead of a lace pattern, try creating a snowflake design with your squeeze bottle for some extra seasonal flare.


Great British Baking pbs rewireSource: Chicago Tribune


Warm up the crowd


Baklava Bites


If I had to choose, my number one meal would be a collection of appetizers, one delicious bite-sized morsel after another. These little bundles seem like a nice alternative to the bacon-wrapped-whatever appetizers that are flooding the shared tables this time of year.  Keep the pistachios in mind as you prep and serve this dishto be mindful of anyone with nut allergies.


Yorkshire Tapas Puddings


Yorkshire Pudding, if you’ve never tried it, is more of a popover or a deflated savory dinner role than what we Americans normally associate with the word “pudding.” It’s made out of a batter and traditionally served accompanying a roast and coated with gravy. These tiny delights take the basic concept, miniaturize it, and apply a Spanish flavor profile.


Finish with a flourish


Chocolate Cardamom Hazelnut Babka


Now onto dessert. This sounds like a great alternative to cakes or pies and as if it would be perfect for nestling up by a roaring fire (authentic or of the Yule Log variety on Netflix). A babka traditionally has some sort of dried fruit worked in but this one focuses on the chocolate and cardamom flavors and turns to hazelnuts for some texture.


Spiced White Chocolate Hazelnut Samosas


If you’ve tackled the recipe above then you’ve already got the chocolate, hazelnuts and cardamom on hand. Only a few more ingredients and you could also serve up this delicate flavor partner.