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Wondering how to brighten up this year's Christmas feasting? Rick Stein has some delicious new ideas which he brought back from his Far Eastern Odyssey. His journey took him to Cambodia, Bali, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Bangladesh and Thailand - historically one of the most important regions in the world associated with spices, and therefore fundamental to our enjoyment of Christmas cake, pudding, mulled wine and mince pies. Although Christmas may not be celebrated to the same level in the Far East, their traditional food could brighten up your meals this season. Reflecting on his trip to the Far East, Rick says that, although this region doesn't actually celebrate Christmas, they sit down regularly for large meals with the whole family; they don't waste any food and they know how to eat healthily. At this time of year, when we are building up to our annual blow out with the family, Rick knows we can learn a lot from the way they do things out east. Food is not just a meal; it's almost a religion in itself, and every meal becomes a joyous celebration. Rick's suggestions range from braised duck in spiced orange juice to beef rendang or an aromatic biryani. But if you still prefer the traditional turkey, he has some new ways of livening up the leftovers. And, to complete the meal, he recommends a very unusual coffee.
Gardener's World 5