With operators finally back into the swing of regular service, it's time to start considering what to offer on Christmas menus. Lisa Jenkins discovers the must-have products for 2020
Henley Bridge has an array of festive desserts, from Christmas presents, which open to reveal a surprise inside, to gelato-filled snowmen and edible Christmas wreaths. Candy Cane Lane is a colourful twist on a traditional Christmas log, using Sosa red food colouring and piping in alternate colours, which is filled with Irca Wonderchoc White. Christmas Sparkle is a layered combination of hazelnut mousse with honey and pear, which is frozen and glazed with Irca Gold Glitter Glaze.
Mediterranean foods supplier Dina Foods offers selection boxes of baklawa, prepared using traditional recipes. Filo Delights are available in festive variants including mincemeat, mint and chocolate chip; orange zest and almond; and walnut and ginger. Dina Foods also supply a boxed range of premium Medjoul dates, including ‘half dip' dates in chocolate.
Central Foods' Menuserve brie and red onion tart is suitable for gluten-free and vegetarian diners, while the Menuserve beetroot and thyme tarte tatin with balsamic-roasted beetroot wedges on a puff pastry base is ideal for vegan and vegetarian customers.
Speciality cheese provider Eurilait's baking Camembert is available in a variety of sizes, including sharing dishes or individual portions. Toppings include orange blossom honey and thyme glaze; caramelised red onion relish; and classic cranberry, all available in either a ceramic baking dish or traditional wooden carton.
Pidy UK offer traditional tartlets and festive-shaped vol-au-vents in a variety of flavours and colours, including Crispy Mussel Shells and Mini Square Trendy Shells, which can be used for a modern take on a mince pie.
Tipiak has launched a plant-based, thaw-and-serve vegan cocktail selection, exclusive to the UK. The finger food assortment includes almond cream and edamame bean on pea and mint muffins; carrot, lemon and ginger mousseline mini tarts; sesame hummus and courgette tagliatelle on courgette and pine nut shortbread.
Young's offers skinless and boneless Norwegian salmon fillets, which the company suggests wrapping in a light and flaky filo pastry or pancetta for a festive twist. A perennial Christmas favourite, Young's frozen Scottish smoked salmon is smoked over oak chips for mild flavour and a smooth texture.
Shepherds Purse has released a new 2kg catering block of their British feta-style cheese, Fettle, alongside the 150g classic pack.
Dawn Foods has launched a star-shaped doughnut with a crème pâtisserie-style filling, natural red glaze icing and star sprinkles.
Bidfood launches its new Christmas range this week, featuring individual Farmstead turkey paupiettes with Cumberland, cranberry and apricot stuffing; vegan wellington slices, made with puff pastry and stuffed with butternut squash, carrot, sweet potato and walnuts, with a smoky red pepper and redcurrant chutney; and a vegan, gluten-free Premium Selection mirrored chocolate truffle torte, made from a light chocolate pastry shell filled with a dark chocolate ganache and topped with a mirrored caramel glaze. It has also developed a food-to-go range with packaging for operators wishing to offer a takeaway Christmas option.
LillyPuds offers Christmas puddings with a high fruit content, blended with ale, brandy, fresh zest and no mixed peel. The puddings are dairy-free and suitable for vegetarians, with additional premium traditional, gluten free or vegan/gluten free variants.
Clearwater's frozen raw lobster meat is produced using a specialised high-pressure extraction system, offering versatility and convenience with no pre-cooking or shucking required. The claw and knuckle meat comes in a 227g ready-to-cook pouch.