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KFC? JENNY ECLAIR CONTEMPLATES CHRISTMAS DINNER

Our favourite Camberwell comedian weighs up the options for Christmas dinner – organic turkey or a bucket of KFC?

Christmas is coming. It snuck up on us, hiding behind blazing autumn sunshine, catching us out still wearing flip flops when the first mince pies landed. No doubt by the time you’re reading this, we’ll be in the grip of freak arctic conditions, but there have been moments in the run up to December when I’ve thought, ‘Well, if it gets any milder, Christmas dinner is going to be a barbecue on the patio, I’ll do turkey kebabs.’

I like to keep things traditional when it comes to Christmas. I want it crisp, I want it cold and I want sprouts. God I love sprouts and, as far as I can Google, we are the only country in the world that saves space on our plate for these tightly furled balls of festive flatulence. Go Britain!

What I don’t want is any member of my family mucking about saying, ‘Let’s have goose this year’. Goose is terribly flabby meat. I might as well offer up one of my legs for the table. Keep it dry, keep it tasteless and stick to turkey. I’m not fussed if it’s not organic. By the time I’ve slathered it in gravy, bread sauce and red currant jelly, I seriously can’t taste the difference. To be honest, if it came in a can I probably wouldn’t notice – tinned turkey roll anyone?

Anything’s got to be better than Christmas dinner in Poland, which is traditionally carp. Now I don’t want to carp on (ha ha, Christmas cracker joke for you), but can you imagine what the leftovers taste like? Carp curry, anyone?

In Japan, the height of Christmas culinary exotica is a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken. This is a country that has given us the most beautiful food on the planet!

Meanwhile, in Japan, the height of Christmas culinary exotica is a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken. I beg your pardon? This is a country that has given us the most beautiful food on the planet – hand-rolled sushi of every colour, size and shape – and yet demand for KFC is so massive in Japan that for a Christmas dinner sit-in special you have to make a reservation at least two months in advance.

So mums and dads, if you’ve really had it with the idea of cooking on the big day, tell the family you’re going Japanese. Seriously, the kids won’t mind, after all there’s not much difference between Colonel Sanders and Santa – I know this for a fact because my old man has been mistaken for both!

Talking of Asian cuisine, massive congratulations to Camberwell’s very own Silk Road Chinese restaurant, which recently won the Observer Food Monthly’s Cheap Eats Restaurant of 2014 award.

If only I could use chopsticks without getting pork dumplings in my hair. Seriously, someone needs to set up a course so that clumsy, fat-fingered Westerners can learn to be Chinese-restaurant confident. There is nothing more demeaning than admitting defeat and asking for a spoon.

Anyway, south Londoners, what I really want to say is, whether you are eating your dinner this year by bamboo, fork, fingers or bucket, I hope you have a really wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year. Cheers!

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE OF JENNY ECLAIR’S COLUMNS

See jennyeclair.com

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