I’ve left it incredibly late yet again, but this Christmas I won’t be charging like a lunatic up the aisles with a sweaty, panicked look on my face. I won’t stand defeated in front of empty shelves where the vegetables used to be, trying to think of an appropriate alternative. And I won’t be placing my items in the bagging area. That’s because this year I’ve decided not to do my Christmas food shop in a high street supermarket but instead visit the V&A collections to see if I can still get all the items on my list.
So, here we go…
Every respectable Christmas dinner should start with a prawn cocktail. So, first on the shopping list are prawns, supplied here by this beautiful 20th century copy of a Kalighat painting.
I’ll be making my own seafood sauce this year, so that’s mayonnaise…
…and tomato ketchup. This advert from 1952 shows an artfully presented dish of sausages and macaroni. Very Mediterranean!
Next on the list is lettuce, ideally Baby Gem. Perfect!
And to finish, some lemons courtesy of this late 19th century wallpaper design by C. F. A. Voysey.
Oh, and some bread, perfectly presented here on this gent’s head. Many thanks!
So, starter done, now to the main course.
A turkey, naturally. I’ve chosen a very plump looking Mughal turkey cock from 1612.
Potatoes for roasting – a large basket full.
And my personal Christmas dinner favourite, parsnips.
More vegetables, this time carrots, supplied here in the form of an elaborate pantomime costume.
And sprouts…well it seems the unloved sprout also remains unloved in our collection but whilst wandering around the fresh produce section, I did come across this 1940s poster encouraging us to eat more green vegetables.
And cranberry sauce. I’m sure Chef Lazenby has a pot of cranberry sauce somewhere in his extensive range. If not, it’s very possible he could persuade you otherwise with his hypnotic eyes.
And finally, dessert.
Obviously, Christmas pudding. Less obvious would be Cliff Richard, dressed as Santa, mixing a giant Christmas pudding…
Always with custard and never with brandy sauce, especially when it’s Bean’s rich and creamy.
A festive feast courtesy of ‘The Victoria and Albert Museum – The world’s greatest museum of art and design (and Christmas dinners).’
Merry Christmas and buon appetito!