Celebrating on Christmas Eve is a bit of a balancing act: you want to eat, drink and be (very) merry, but you don't want to turn up at the midnight church service absolutely shit-faced (not again). Excessive boozing on Santa's busiest night can have repercussions beyond the aforementioned drunken carolling and loud tittering at that group of girls who insist on singing the descant part throughout O, Come All Ye Faithful. A hangover on Christmas morning really puts a dampener on the whole day. With overexcited children, flashing tree lights, sprouts and Cliff Richard songs, December 25th is an all-out assault on the senses!
Just in case you overdo it on the mince pies and liqueur chocolates on Monday, or any other, night here's some hangover food* with a fancy twist. It's my take on kedgeree, made on the assumption that you won't have had the prescience to pre-boil any eggs or make rice the following day, because why would you?
- 1 banana shallot, or 2 little shallots, chopped
- ½ tsp tumeric
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp grated root ginger (or ½ tsp ground ginger)
- 250g pouch of cooked long grain rice
- a good knob of butter (stop giggling...)
- a small handful of parsley or coriander (or both), roughly chopped
- 1 or 2 fried eggs
- some smoked salmon, the trimmings are perfect
- a lemon, cut into wedges
- Put a deep frying pan, quietly, on a medium heat and add a little oil. Chuck in the shallot and fry to soften.
- Add the turmeric, garam masala and ginger and keep frying until the fragrance of the spices are released. The ginger should ease your nausea and turmeric can protect your liver from the effects of alcohol so, keep going, you're doing well here.
- Stir the rice into the pan to coat with the spicy shallots and cook for about 5 minutes. Carbs are a must right now, your blood sugar needs the help.
- Take the rice off the heat and stir in the butter and herbs. Parsley and coriander both have detoxifying properties, this is a good thing.
- Put the whole thing on to a plate and garnish with the fried egg (protein, helpful), pieces of smoked salmon (this is just a bit of a festive treat) and lemon wedges. If you feel up to it, a dash of chilli sauce is a wonderful thing on this, too.
- Eat, lie down for a while, feel well enough to get tipsy on sherry trifle, repeat.
*I offer no guarantee that this will erase any cringeworthy memories, like trying to snog the vicar, or help you remember where your other shoe went. It will make you feel a bit more human and prepare you to face the day.