Christmas Food Quiz – with some Delicious Answers!

Here is a little Christmas Quiz I devised with some delicious answers - but don't cheat! 


Christmas Quiz Questions ...

1.  Of which Christmas dish did the Quakers say this?

an invention of the scarlet whore of Babylon, an hodgepodge of superstition, Popery, the Devil and his works.

2.  Which alcoholic drink (a perfect accompaniment to Christmas pud, incidentally) may have formed a crust called beeswing?

3.  Which Christmas food should only be eaten between and including Christmas Eve and Twelfth Night? (Tell that to Tesco!)

4.   Which of these is NOT Moose Milk?

a)  A hot rum drink
b)  Liquid that comes out of a mummy moose’s nipples
c)   Ice cream with rum and Kahlua

5.   What can be added to brandy to make Christmas Pud burn even more spectacularly?

beautifully flaming christmas pudding

6.     Bounceberry is a colloquial name for which Christmassy fruit?

7.    In which classic 19th century book was a poor family served …

ice cream – actually two dishes of it, pink and white – and cake and fruit and distracting French bonbons?

8.     What can be stored alongside Christmas cake to keep it moist?
selection of spices

9.     Which spice is traditionally used to flavour Bread Sauce?

10.   What was formed into the shape of a “husband” and baked in the hope of attracting the real thing?

11.  The Old Norse phrase ves heill” evolved into which tradition and beverage in Britain?

12.  Which traditional Christmas food can be traced back to a cookbook written in Roman times?

13.  What did confectioner Tom Smith invent in 1846 that is now de rigueur on the British Christmas table?

14. In Dickens’ A Christmas Carol who served up the Figgy Pudding?

15. Do sugarplums have anything to do with plums?

16. Which traditional mince pie ingredient is no longer included in modern mince pies?

17.  Just to piss you off – how many calories do you think the average adult Christmas dinner is estimated to contain?

18.  Mince pies are often topped with a star but what was a traditional decoration in days of yore?

19  Senior Wrangler Sauce is a traditional Christmas sauce at Cambridge University, is it …
cambridge university shield

a) Bread Sauce
b) Cranberry Sauce
c) Brandy Butter
d) Custard

Now, before we get into the answers, and as a way of helping you not to cheat by causing an obstruction, allow me to interrupt this blog to mention my Christmas cookbook Easy Festive Food for a Stress Free Christmas.
OK ~ the Answers ...

1.   Christmas Pudding.  God knows what they were doing with it!

glass of port
2.  Port 

As it ages a thin crust forms in the bottle which, when broken, looks like bees’ wings. Seasoned port drinkers handle the bottle carefully so as not to break the beeswing. Incidentally if you happen to have "too much port" here are some good ideas.

3.   Mince Pies 

In fact, you should eat one a day for the 12 days of Christmas. Whilst eating the first one it is recommended that a wish be made for good luck in the coming year.  To make this task less onerous add a little grated orange zest and/or some brandy to the mincemeat before making the pies.  Also, serving with clotted cream might help. To make the magic more powerful it is important that mince pies are eaten in silence.

4.   c) !

Ice cream with rum and Kahlua is not generally referred to as Moose milk. The hot rum drink of this name is amazingly quick, easy, delicious and strangely satisfying.  Moose milk recipe here.

5.   Salt

Mix a goodly pinch of salt into the brandy you intend pouring over the pud.  Warm gently then pour over and proceed to light it.  The result is lovely golden hued flames and a delicious salty kick to the pud.  This is not my idea, I read it in the strange little book reviewed here.  

If you are a bit scared or a bit teetotal stick a sparkler or two into the pudding and light that before bringing it to the table instead!

6.  Cranberries

bouncing cranberries
When ripe cranberries will bounce - just watch here!  This is because they contain small pockets of air so, luckily, they float, which is how they are harvested. It is easy to make your own bounceberry/cranberry sauce – 3 variations in my book.

homemade buttered rum and ginger ice cream

7.   Little Women by Louisa May Alcott.  

See here for 6 Delicious No-Churn Christmas Ice Cream Recipes including this gorgeous Buttered Rum & Ginger Ice Cream.

an apple to keep fruit cake moist
8.  An Apple

“They do say” that storing an apple in the container with the cake helps to keep it moist. I would suggest replacing the apple (and eating the old one or see here for other ideas for leftover apples) regularly if you do this.

jar of cloves

9.   Cloves. 

Personally I dislike cloves but whether you like them or not there is a seriously luxurious and somewhat authentic recipe for bread sauce here.

10.    Gingerbread

Hence Gingerbread men.  The first recorded instance of these chaps is when Elizabeth I had replicas of visiting dignitaries made as gifts but the idea was soon adopted by women willing to try anything (even a delicious biccy) to find a man.  

If you are single your need this ...

gingerbread man

Gingerbread Recipe

350g plain flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
pinch of salt
100g butter
175g soft light brown sugar
1 lightly beaten egg
4 tablespoons golden syrup

~   Preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/170ºC fan/gas 5.
~   Mix together the first 4 ingredients and then rub in the butter.
~   Stir in the sugar.
~   Add the egg and syrup and mix to a firm dough.
~   Roll out to about the thickness of a gingerbread husband and cut into several pieces the shape of your ideal man.
~   Lay on a baking tray and cook for 10-15 minutes till golden brown.
~   Cool on the tray a few minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.
~   Decorate with icing, ribbons, etc.

Makes approximately 20 biscuits which is surely more than enough husbands for anyone!

11.  Wassail

The original phrase meant “good health” and this is what we wish friends and neighbours as we partake of mulled cider (traditional) or other splendid beverages. 

Mulled Cider Recipe

ltr dry cider (and for my American readers I mean the alcoholic type)
125g soft light brown sugar
12 cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
about 2cm fresh root ginger- sliced
1 orange – sliced
1 apple – sliced
a little rum, brandy or, best of all, Calvados – optional

~   Pour half the cider into a large pot and add the rest of the ingredients except the rum.
~   Simmer together gently for about half an hour.
~   Add the rest of the cider, taste and add a little more sugar if necessary, if you do then simmer a few mins to dissolve it.
~   Strain or not, as you wish.
~   Ladle into glasses to which you may, or may not, have added a tot of spirit.

glass of mulled cider

And here's a lovely easy Mulled Wine recipe as an alternative.

12.  Stuffing 

Apicius who lived somewhere around the end of BC and the start of AD. had recipes in his cookbook 'Apicius de re Coquinaria', for stuffed chicken, pig, and dormouse, using vegetables, herbs, nuts, spelt and offal.

Here’s a great adaptable recipe for stuffing using bread and other ingredients – shove it up a dormouse if you like!

christmas cracker

13.  Christmas crackers!

14.   Mrs. Cratchit.

15.   Not Really!

In the 17th century “sugar plum” was a term commonly used to describe a comfit, i.e. a nut seed or spice coated in sugar. Sugared almonds are descendants of these comfits but in earlier times they frequently consisted of sugar coated coriander or caraways seeds! So, in short, the answer is hardly at all – maybe there was the occasional plum in there!

16.  Meat.

Early mince pies not only included fruits, nuts, spices and sugar but also meat, as in this recipe from 1624.  This is reflected by the inclusion of suet in mincemeat today.

I think even pies of indifferent bignesse in those days were quite large – this probably makes about 24 of our  21st century mince pies.
1624 mince pie recipe
Pin for easy reference!!

Libra approximates our pound weight and is where the abbreviation lb derives from.

17.  7,000 calories!  

Sorry about that.

18.  The star decoration on mince pies originally represented the Star of Bethlehem but in the past, when pies were often rectangular or oval, suggesting a manger, an image of Baby Jesus was also a popular motif with the top crust being his swaddling clothes.  Must have been quite a challenge for the cook.

19.   Bread Sauce - delicious bread sauce recipe here, you'll have to scroll down a bit.
bread sauce with caramelised onions - delicious!


versavisa said...

Love the quiz and I'm keeping it for Christmas Day.

Yes, what is it with Oreos? Pleased to see them in the shops after hearing a lot about them but eugh - give me a good Bourbon or Custard Cream any day.

Love the blog - let's have more please.


Unknown said...

Same here in Australia - I don't get why Oreo's have become so popular - I think it's more a case of advertising. We do have really good biscuits here, but not generally from the supermarket any more, they seem to be using cheaper ingredients and the flavours have changed a lot over the years.

I really enjoy your blog - you take a lot of the nonsense out of food and I love the way you don't waste anything. Thanks for the quiz and have a great Christmas.


info dose said...

Christmas day is always my favorite. and in this post i know too much things that i don't about the Christmas before. thank you for let us know. though i also found useful quiz about christmas here Christmas trivia questions