In Review

Tried and tasted: DIY Christmas meal kits

Festive food from Drake & Morgan and Home by Simon Rogan

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Drake & Morgan’s festive feast for two

Drake & Morgan’s festive feast for two

Some restaurant delivery boxes forget that the experience starts right from the moment you start taking things out of the box. Of course, the wrapping needs to be functional and do the job, keeping everything cool and well preserved, but opening a DIY food delivery, particularly a Christmas one, should feel a little like opening a present. Such is the case with the Christmas box from Drake & Morgan, which comes sprinkled with Quality Streets throughout.

But the presentation is only part of the experience, and the proof of quality will always be found in the (Christmas) pudding. Fortunately, there is plenty on display here. 

The three-course menu kicks off with sourdough bread and butter, Nocellara olives and smoked almonds, followed by Chapel & Swan smoked salmon with soda bread and piccalilli, and duck liver parfait with pear chutney and brioche – all entirely delicious.

Then comes the main course, which features a free-range turkey breast served with all the trimmings including pigs in blankets, pork and apricot stuffing, goose fat roast potatoes and more. It is so much food that you will likely be looking up Christmas leftovers recipes and eating it for several days afterwards. 

Last comes the Christmas pud with clotted cream and brandy custard, chocolate brownies, mini mince pies and brandy butter. And then, I suppose, it is time to unwrap those Quality Streets. Hey, Christmas only comes once a year, after all, right?

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Home by Simon Rogan Christmas meal

Home by Simon Rogan

It is easy to overdo it at Christmas. In fact, it is rather hard not to go entirely overboard. Indeed, the average British person eats 6,000 calories on Christmas Day, according to The Independent, three times the recommended daily intake for women.

Simon Rogan’s DIY Christmas kit offers a neat sleight of hand by giving off the appearance of restraint, while actually delivering on the calorific overload. Indeed, the starters of truffled celeriac soup with confit duck followed by pine-cured smoked salmon, with whipped cod's roe and beetroot could make you believe you are being positively abstemious. Both are elegant dishes that get the appetite going, rather than snuffing it out entirely. 

But then the delicious turkey arrives, loaded with all the trimmings, and you remember immediately what Christmas is all about: gluttony and excess. Oh and charity and good will to all mankind, of course.

For dessert there is a pretty traditional Christmas pud, with rich brandy custard and, in case you aren’t already horizontal and digesting, mince pie chocolates to finish the meal – and not to mention, you – off. 

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