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Piccadilly Papers ’TIS THE SEASON

TO M PA R K E R B OW L E S

T H E F O RT N U M ’ S COOK BOOK

A B A N G , N OT A WHIMPER

Your merriest Christmas starts with Fortnum’s

A guide to festive feasting

Our winter tartiflette recipe

The history of Fortnum’s crackers


Piccadilly Papers

Packed Full of Christmas Step inside the magical world of Fortnum’s, and you’ll see just why we’ve been Masters of Merry since 1707. Count them – that’s 312 Christmases we’ve got under our belt. And year after year, festive spirits remain irrepressibly buoyant at 181 Piccadilly. Such is our enthusiasm that we begin polishing baubles, stacking crackers, and generally decking the halls as soon as we possibly can, looking forward to the moment when we can let our festive flag truly fly. By now, our wonderful windows have been unveiled, our winter lodge at Somerset House is abuzz with the après-skate crowd, our Food Halls are crammed with feast-worthy provisions, and our diary is packed with so many festive happenings that Father Christmas himself has warned us that we may be overdoing things. Well, good. Now is no time for understatement: we’ll take popping corks, lusty singing, booming crackers, and the joy-giving, lifeaffirming, celebratory feelings and foods of Christmas any day. And nothing better captures the magic of Christmas than a Fortnum’s hamper. Filled with delicious things to eat, drink, share and enjoy, our wickers are the original, and the best. Simply put, nothing beats giving or receiving one at Christmas. For many of our customers, over the centuries and across the generations and the miles, from our glorious gifts to the very best mince pies, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without Fortnum’s. It is a huge privilege, and quite a responsibility, to be such an important part of Christmas for people all over the world. As for you, we know you’re always one step ahead. So this year, why delay? You can enjoy the pick of everything at Fortnum’s and be ready for all those ‘Oh, you shouldn’t haves’ come Christmas. After all, there’s no time like the present…

Last Chance Delivery for Christmas Orders

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E U & WO R L DW I D E D E L I V E RY ( 2 PM )

U K S TA N DA R D

U K N A M E D DAY D E L I V E RY

U K N E X T DAY

U S & C A N A DA D E L I V E RY (6 PM )

D E L I V E RY (6 PM )

& F R E S H H A M PE R S (6 PM )

D E L I V E RY (6 PM )

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We’ve been busy making the everyday special for over 300 years. So, how did we do today? Whether you were treating yourself or received a gift, let us know what you liked and loved about your Fortnum’s experience – and just as importantly, what we can do better next time. We read every comment, so please visit the link below.

Printed on 100% recycled paper using vegetable inks. Make it a happy ending and recycle your copy of Piccadilly Papers once you’ve devoured the contents – or share with a foodie friend.

Scan code with smartphone or visit fortnumsfeedback.com


| GUE ST WOR D S |

Three Cheers for the Cook Tom Parker Bowles

Ah, Christmas. Season of joy, goodwill... and lastminute culinary chaos. The 25th of December is a day that can turn otherwise calm and competent cooks into complete gibbering wrecks. Growing up, I’ll never forget the sight of my mother and aunt, having risen at some ungodly hour and clad in their dressing gowns, furiously kicking a too-large turkey into a too-small Aga. And these were women who could quite happily cook dinner for 16, without even breaking a sweat. Of course, the unwise words of my father and uncle (‘We told you it was too big!’) did little to add to the festive spirit. But cooking the Christmas Day lunch is exactly like cooking any other Sunday lunch, with the

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added advantage of being able to neck a glass of champagne, guilt-free, before you even brush your teeth. Better still, kitchen duties mean a free pass from going to church. My worship is spent at the stove. So, as the faithful trot off to hark those herald angels, I’m left in blissful peace to get on with lunch, fuelled by a second glass, and accompanied by the heavenly choirs of King’s College, Cambridge. As ever, preparation is key. Peel the Brussels sprouts and potatoes, plop those potatoes into cold water, and bring them to the boil and simmer until soft and on the cusp of falling apart. Drain then put them in the fridge to cool. Stock next, made with turkey giblets and the usual aromatics

F O RT N U M A N D M A SO N .CO M


“Cook Christmas lunch and you have the advantage of being able to neck a glass of champagne before you’ve even brushed your teeth”

(leave out the liver, as it tends to make things more bitter than Scrooge); make, then infuse the bread sauce with clove-studded onion. And start the wretched Christmas pudding (I’m not a fan, though I stand alone on this one) on its interminable simmer. Oh, and massage the turkey with lashings of soft butter, while seasoning the inside with salt and pepper, and a couple of lemons too. The stuffing is best cooked on its own. And that’s the hard graft done. Time for another smug drink. Then it’s simply a question of slipping the turkey into the oven, along with the baconwrapped sausages, and checking the pudding pan hasn’t dried out. By now, the hordes have arrived home, and the air is filled with the scent of roasting bird and the sound of tearing paper. Time to get that goose fat smoking hot, bung in the spuds (as well as the separate stuffing), ensure they’re well coated in hot fat, and put them in the oven. Check after 20 minutes,

turning every 15 minutes or so until crisp and burnished. You want to time the turkey so it’s done 30 minutes before lunch is called. Let it rest in a warm place, take another swill, and get on with the gravy. Pour off excess fat, deglaze with white wine, add stock and simmer for 10 minutes. Sieve into a warmed jug. With 15 minutes to go, put the sprouts on, take another slurp, take the potatoes out and that warm bread sauce. Finally, lavish the sprouts with butter and carve the turkey. Have another swig, sit down and get stuck in. As for the washing up... well, that’s for everyone else. Your work is done. Have a very Merry Christmas. Tom is a self-confessed Fortnum’s devotee, informed foodie, award-winning food writer, and author of our two cook books, The Fortnum’s Cook Book and Christmas & Other Winter Feasts.

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| T H E FORT N UM’S CO OK B O OK |

Tartiflette A long-time favourite among the après-skaters at the Fortnum’s Lodge at Somerset House, this alpine classic also makes for a hearty home supper. Born in the ’80s, this gloriously indulgent mixture of cheese, ham (we use pancetta), onions and potatoes was actually created by the Union Interprofessional Reblochon to promote sales of its eponymous cheese. Our top tip – don’t remove the cheese rind as it’s deeply edible, and goes gloriously crusty in the oven. Smoked streaky bacon can be substituted for pancetta and any good melting cheese for Reblochon.

For more from Fortnum’s kitchens simply search ‘cook book’ at fortnumandmason.com

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Piccadilly Papers

Method 1 Cook the sliced potatoes in a large pan of boiling salted water for 10-12 minutes, until just tender but not breaking up. Drain and set aside. 2 Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, ovenproof frying pan (or an ovenproof dish), then add the onion and cook for 8-10 minutes until transluscent.

C H R I S T M A S & OT H E R W I N T E R F E A S T S CO O K B O O K £30  |  CODE 2204657

Serves 4 • 1kg Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut into slices about 1.5cm thick • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil • 1 large Spanish onion, thinly sliced • 250g pancetta, sliced into strips • 4 garlic cloves, chopped • 100ml dry white wine • 1 bay leaf • 200ml double cream • 450g Reblochon cheese, cut into 5mm-thick slices (don’t remove the rind)

3 Add the pancetta and cook for another 5 minutes, then stir in the garlic. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is cooked through and the onions have turned lightly golden. 4 Drain off any excess fat. Increase the heat, then pour the white wine into the pan and add a bay leaf. Cook for a couple of minutes, stirring to deglaze the pan, until the wine has reduced by about a third. 5 Add the cream and simmer until that has reduced by about a third too. Remove the pan from the heat and add the potatoes, stirring carefully to coat them with the creamy mixture – it doesn’t matter if they start to break up a little. Remove the bay leaf and season the mixture to taste. 6 Nestle about two-thirds of the chunks of cheese in among the potatoes and onions, then scatter the rest over the top. 7 Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for about 15 minutes at 180°C/Gas Mark 4, until golden brown and bubbling. 8 Leave to settle for a few minutes, then serve with a salad, or vinaigrette-dressed Little Gems, and a few cornichons to cut through the creaminess of the Reblochon.

F O RT N U M ’ S A L SAC E G R A N D C RU R I ES L I N G PF E R S I G B E RG , D O M A I N E B RU N O SO RG £28.50   |  (75CL) CODE 2085892

Tropical notes and vibrant acidity compliment tartiflette’s rich creaminess

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Piccadilly Papers

Gifts for Everyone On Your List From your nearest and dearest to your distant cousin-in-law twice removed, there’s something special for everyone at Fortnum’s this Christmas.

F O RT N U M ’ S R E D A L PH A B E T ‘A’ M U G

CHRISTMAS BLEND CO F F E E

C H R I S T M A S S PI C E D B L AC K T E A £15   |  (200G) CODE 2210787

£18   |  (350ML) CODE 8019896

£12.95   |  (250G) CODE 2210788

Be teatime-ready this Christmas with our alphabet mugs in a festive red colour.

A cheerful, bright blend of the best beans from Central America, Asia and Africa.

C H R I S T M A S B I SC U IT S E L EC TI O N TI N

CHRISTMAS M E R R I LO S S U S

G EO RG I A N C H R I S T M A S TEA FOR ONE

£21.95   |  (650G) CODE 2202427

£17.95   |  (600G) CODE 2210881

£130   |  (300ML) CODE 8021294

Filled to the brim with Fortnum’s favourites in moreish biscuit form.

A biscuit take on a Christmas pudding, filled with fruit, nuts and spices.

Handmade from fine bone china and intricately detailed with gold gilding.

C H O CO L AT E C A R A M E L S S E L EC T I O N B OX

K I N G G EO RG E CHRISTMAS PUDDING

£39.95   |  (288G) CODE 2214190

£44.95   |  (1.36KG) CODE 2210889

Discover a world of distinct flavours, with each caramel hand-decorated in England.

Contains beef suet, Fortnum’s Cognac and Pusser’s Fullstrength Navy Rum.

C H R I S T M A S S PI C E D B I SC U IT F I L L E D C H O CO L AT E B A R £6.95   |  (75G) CODE 2202077 This unputdownable Chocolate Library classic makes for the perfect stocking filler.

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A warming blend of cocoa nibs, zesty clementine and soothing Christmas spices.


Piccadilly Papers

B OX I N G DAY PI C K L E £4.95   |  (220G) CODE 2210923 A blend of beetroot, parsnip, toasted fennel, coriander, Stanley plums and apricots.

R I O J A C R I A N Z A M AG N U M £31.95   |  (1.5L) CODE 2125367 Aged for 12 months, this intense red wine has notes of berry fruits and a long finish.

C H R I S T M A S A PR I COT, C R A N B E R RY & P O RT C H U TN E Y £4.95   |  (230G) CODE 2210922 A combination of sweet apricots, juicy cranberries and a dash of port.

S H I M M E R I N G S T R AW B E R RY PR ES E RV E £7.95   |  (200G) CODE 2215287 A fruity jam with extra sparkle, and the perfect partner to hot buttered toast.

F O RT N U M ’ S S PE YS I D E 8 Y E A R O L D S I N G L E M A LT SCOTC H WHISKY

C H R I S T M A S PE R SO N A L I S E D C H A M PAG N E & C H O CO L AT E G I F T B OX

£45 |  (70CL) CODE 2204154

£76.50   |  (75CL & 165G) CODE 8021204

A rich, well-rounded whisky that has been aged for eight years in ex-sherry casks.

Add your own personal message to the label for an extra special bottle of bubbly.

T H E M E R RY M A K E R’ S H A M PE R

TH E W I NTE R H A M PE R

T H E V EG A N F R I E N D LY C H R I S T M A S H A M PE R

£60   |  (7 ITEMS) CODE 2202271

£100  |  (9 ITEMS) CODE 8021015

£150   |  (10 ITEMS) CODE 8021014

Packed with Yuletide delights, from tea and biscuits to festive confectionery.

The perfect cure for those teeth-chatteringly cold evenings.

T H E F O RT N U M ’ S W I N E H A M PE R £175   |  (12 BOTTLES) CODE 2158121 Showcasing twelve of the finest whites and reds, handselected by our experts.

THE SLEIGHBORNE H A M PE R £500   |  (24 ITEMS) CODE 2201631 Generously furnished with chocolate, teas, teaware, and musical treats.

F O RT N U M A N D M A SO N .CO M

Now nobody need miss out on Christmas pudding, cake, chocolate, tipples and more.

THE CHRISTMAS FEAST H A M PE R £1,000   |  (31 ITEMS) CODE 2187976 Feasting is the order of the day with this pleasingly wellequipped hamper.

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Open Up the Wonderful World of Fortnum & Mason Be the first to hear about Fortnum’s latest news, offers and events by signing up to our email newsletter

Scan code with your smartphone or visit fortnumandmason.com/opt-in to sign up If at any time you would like more information about how we store and use your data, feel free to browse the privacy policy at fortnumandmason.com


| FORT N UM’S & CH R IST M A S |

Experience All That Fortnum’s Has to Offer From Piccadilly and St Pancras to The Royal Exchange and Heathrow’s Terminal 5, our stores are packed to bursting with everything you could possibly need for a magical festive season.

FESTI VE EVENTS From talks and tastings to workshops and walking tours, join us throughout the season as we get into the spirit of things. fortnumandmason.com/events

CREATE YOUR OWN HA MPER Had a peruse and not sure what to choose? You can easily build your own hamper either in store or online. fortnumandmason.com/create-your-own

A PERSONAL TOUCH Add messages to bottles, silverware, jewellery and more with our engraving, embossing and labelling services. fortnumandmason.com/personalised-gifts

GIFT CARDS Delivered in a beautiful Eau de Nil presentation box, our gift cards put the choice in their hands. fortnumandmason.com/gift-cards


Piccadilly Papers

| F ROM T H E A R CH I V E |

A Bigger Bang Popular legend has it that late one night, as Christmas approached, confectioner Tom Smith was sitting in his chair by the fire, mulling over ways to make himself stand out from the usual sugar-coated crowd. At that moment, a burning log gave a great crack and with a Yuletide eureka, he had it. The cracker was born. A fine tale, for sure, but the real story is rather more prosaic. Sometime in the 1850s, Smith had bought the prototype for a cracker from Tom Brown, an experimental chemist at Brock’s Fireworks in south London. But it was woefully under-marketed, and Smith immediately saw the seasonal potential. In 1860 the very first Christmas cracker, the ‘Bang of Expectation’, hit the market. Business boomed. Fortnum’s took to the new tradition with predictable gusto. ‘Crackers are a fetish with the firm,’ wrote the Observer in 1912 – with absolute justification. They were first featured in the Christmas catalogue of 1910, page upon page of exquisitely wrought delight. There was even an exclusive cracker department, where 45 Jermyn St. now sits. These works of art came in three varieties. First was the pulling cracker, which is the type we know today. They were shaped into myriad wonderful forms – turkeys, pastries, bottles of Champagne, barrels of beer, fish, fruit, Christmas cakes and even a vast slice of wedding

cake. Which suggests that they were not pulled at Christmas alone. There were versions for women, and boys and girls, containing everything from dolls and small glass animals to silk handkerchiefs, indoor fireworks, musical instruments and games. More exciting still were the standing crackers, which were actually life-size figures, as tall as six feet. One could choose from Beefeaters, guardsmen (‘Incredibly handsome,’ sighed the catalogue, ‘and ready to explode with pride and so he will, for he’s only a cracker’), gnomes, crocodiles, bulldogs, giant frogs, Father Christmas, pirates, princesses, princes, clowns and pigs. One year we sold a giant devil, with electric eyes that lit up red. There were even models of the most popular actors of stage and screen. You pulled the strings, whereupon the figure exploded and showered everyone with small crackers. Our penchant for extravagance has not waned over the centuries: this year’s Midas Touch crackers, housed in their very own Fortnum’s hamper, contain a golden gift card entitling winners to a special Fortnum’s experience and gift. Crackers with a bang, not a whimper. Crackers, the Fortnum’s way.

Search ‘crackers’ at fortnumandmason.com to shop the full range

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| FORT N UM’S SOM M E L I E R |

All Bubble, No Trouble This rather special bottle of bubbly is just the tipple to toast the festive season – and despite its celebration-ready appearance, contains zero alcohol. Drawing on the combined expertise of our tea and wine departments, the provenance of our Sparkling Tea is exemplary. The certified organic brew blends eight of our most famous and rare teas of the very first time.

FORTNUM’S SPARKLING TEA, 0% ABV £16.95  | (75CL) CODE 4008282

With unique and complex flavours – including tropical fruits on the nose and a palate of lemongrass, Darjeeling and water mint – and just the right amount of fizz, it makes for a light, refreshing and tea-total alternative to Champagne this Christmas. And with just 116 calories in a single bottle, there’s even more reason to pop the cork and pour with abandon…

Sparkling Partners Highly versatile when it comes to food, our tipple pairs beautifully with this tasty trio.

CHICKEN & HAM PIE

TR ADITIONAL SCOTCH EGG

ORGANIC SMOKED SALMON

£7.95  |  (440G) CODE 2207857

£3.75  |  (160G) CODE 2139190

£20.00  |  (200G) CODE 2155353

Cosy up with a classic: a comforting pie filled with tender chunks of chicken breast and ham, cooked with a light blend of mixed herbs, and encased in handmade pastry.

A particularly moist and tender Scotch egg, consisting of a free range egg covered in a layer of British outdoor-reared pork and a coat of crisp homemade breadcrumbs.

Farmed through sustainable aquaculture, our Organic Smoked Salmon comes sliced for ease. Serve as a starter alongside chopped capers or in buttered brown bread sandwiches.

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Attention, Passengers! Get Christmas gifting all wrapped up before your journey from St Pancras, with time for a cocktail too. This November we’re reopening our Bar & Restaurant at our outpost in London’s St Pancras. A haven of tranquility amidst the bustle of the station, the newly designed space gives you every reason to arrive in good time before your journey – to enjoy cocktails, breakfast, lunch, dinner or even our afternoon tea. In our well-stocked store, you’ll find hampers, tea, wine, gifts and and wrapping services too, making it the perfect place for travellers heading home for the festive season to do some eleventh-hour Christmas shopping.

F OR T N U M & M A S O N AT S T PA N C R A S I N T E R N AT I O N A L S H O P | R E S TA U R A N T | B A R R E S E RVAT I O N S @ F O RT N U M A N D M A S O N . C O. U K 020 7734 8040 15


Making Christmas Merrier since 1707

’Tis the season to eat, drink and be more than a little merry. And with our superior selection of champagne – notably our brut vintage, exclusively produced for us by the acclaimed house of Louis Roederer – we’ve just the bubbles to celebrate.

F O RT N U M ’ S C H A M PAG N E

O N L Y F O R T N U M’S C H A M PA G N E 2 4 / 7 AT F O RT N U M A N D M A S O N . C O M

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Profile for Fortnums

Piccadilly Papers Christmas Issue  

Piccadilly Papers is a quarterly journal from Fortnum & Mason that draws on three centuries of excellence in food and drink, including never...

Piccadilly Papers Christmas Issue  

Piccadilly Papers is a quarterly journal from Fortnum & Mason that draws on three centuries of excellence in food and drink, including never...

Profile for fortnums