Insta Foodies Celebrate Christmas With a Desi Twist

Christmas recipes get an Indian makeover in #XmasGoneDesi Instagram contest

Henna Achhpal

To celebrate Christmas in 2018, home cooks on Instagram brought out their aprons and set out to give traditional Christmas recipes an Indian makeover. They were inspired by the #XmasGoneDesi giveaway contest initiated by a fellow foodie on Instagram, Nidhi Raghav aka @platterjoy.

Raghav, who runs a software firm in Delhi, announced the giveaway contest to her Instagram followers on December 1. The rules are simple, "share your Christmas Bakes and Roasts with an Indian twist," reads Raghav's Instagram post, which opened the contest to worldwide entries.

LF couldn't resist browsing through the Instagram contest entries, and it's safe to say we were left soaked in Christmas spirit. Food blogger Deeba Rajpal, who uses garam masala in her Christmas recipes, took a peek at the contest entries and picked her favourites too! These visual treats are sure to bring on the Christmas mood, while the unique Indian takes on traditional Christmas recipes will leave you with culinary inspiration for your Christmas menu.

Hasselback Potatoes

No matter what time of the year it is, baked potatoes are comfort food across the world. But this Swedish version of baked potatoes, first made by a trainee chef in 1953 in Stockholm, makes a special appearance around Christmas every year. For the #XmasGoneDesi contest, Baltimore-based Sweta Sagarika took the traditional Hasselback Potatoes Recipe and spiced it with Indian ingredients like turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and fennel powder. The lawyer by day and baker by passion took some more traditional Christmas recipes and gave them Indian flavours like Roohafza-spiced poached pears, a curried chicken pot pie and carrot cupcakes with Roohafza whipped cream.

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Don’t forget to check out LF’s 12 Days of Christmas series!


A type of layered pastry with a sweet or savoury filling, this Austrian recipe is a favourite for using up Christmas leftovers. Insta foodie Lipsa Deo says she prefers savoury strudel and made a filling of cabbage and beetroot tossed in Indian spices. "I have served it hot with an extra dose of Parmesan cheese and yogurt Dill sauce," she says in her Instagram post for the contest. "This is a great vegetarian option for Christmas dinner or simply next day brunch," signs off Deo.

Deeba Rajpal's Picks:

The popular food blogger of Passionate About Baking picked Sagarika's Hasselback Potatoes recipe and Deo's strudel recipe as her favourites from the #XmasGoneDesi contest entries. "They embrace the season and look like crowd pleasers," says Rajpal, "Also, it's easy to get sweet going but savoury inspiration is always fun."


Said to be named after an Italian film, stromboli is a type of turnover pastry typically filled with Italian cheeses, cold cuts or vegetables. Often styled in the shape of a wreath, it is a popular addition to Christmas menus. A Singapore-based Insta foodie from Pune, Vaidu used India's favourite main course recipe, paneer butter masala, as the filling for her stromboli recipe. "I used homemade pizza dough to prepare the stromboli," she says in her Instagram post for #XmasGoneDesi. "To maintain the desipan I replaced oregano with carom seeds that is Ajwain," she adds.

Chutneys & Jams

Jars of jams and chutneys are popular Christmas goodies to gift family and friends around this time of the year. Dr Nimrata Kaur, a cardiologist, couldn't stop herself from making a healthy recipe for the festive season. Listing the health benefits of Indian fig in her Instagram post, she says, "Instead of the traditional cranberry sauce made for the holiday season, I used Indian fig to make this chutney." Arpita, a recipe developer and food photographer, made a chutney recipe too. "This Indian style apple chutney makes a perfectly delicious homemade edible Christmas gift for your friends and family," she says in her Instagram post for the #XmasGoneDesi contest.


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