What to eat over Christmas in the Dominican Republic?

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Christmas is a time for celebrating, and perhaps nowhere on earth is this truer than in the Dominican Republic.

People in the Dominican Republic are so passionate about food that they pour their heart and soul into preparing the most delicious traditional Dominican cuisine to make Christmas and the holidays extra special.

Dominicans are renowned for their tasty seasoning in their traditional dishes, but you should never underestimate the exquisite buffets prepared for one of the biggest holidays of the year. Although you can try these typical dishes more than once a year, we promise you that in December they will taste even better.

So if you’re on holidays in the Caribbean during the December holiday season, we recommend the following dishes that will surely make you fall even more in love with the place.

Cassava empanadas

A delicious wrap of fried cassava dough, stuffed with meat, chicken or cheese, the meat often has some raisins added too.

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Roast chicken or pork

This is seen as the main dish for any Christmas or New Year’s dinner in the Dominican Republic. This delicious roast meat is what takes up most of the cooking time and preparation at this time of year.

Nuts and dried fruits

Nuts and dried fruit are part of the Dominican Christmas holiday season. Dishes of different nuts and dried fruits are usually placed in the living room for family and friends to snack on before the more formal dinner is served.

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Oliver salad

A delicious combination of potatoes, carrots, hard-boiled eggs, vinegar, mayonnaise, raisins and corn, that’s usually served as a side dish with pork or chicken at Christmas or New Year’s dinners.

Leaf cakes

Leaf cakes are created by grating yuca or banana to form the paste, which is then moulded into rectangular purse shapes and stuffed with meat. They are then wrapped in a banana leaf and boiled. Leaf cakes are usually served at Christmas and have become a staple of Dominican cuisine, but also perfect to enjoy in many other celebrations.

Telera bread

Telera bread has been part of the Dominican Republic’s Christmas dinner for decades. It’s always a sign that Christmas is approaching when you begin to see telera bread appearing in shops and stalls selling pork.

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Jellies

This is a must dessert at Christmas time, and one of the best complements to apples, raisins and grapes. The great thing about jellies is that they are so sweet that you only have to serve them up on a plate as they look great for anyone with a sweet tooth after a formal dinner.

Turrón

Dominicans have a sweet tooth, so after the exquisite banquet, turrón is the solution!

Turrón is a typical sweet, typically made of honey, sugar and egg white, toasted almonds and other nuts that usually comes in the shape of a rectangular tablet or a round cake.

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Apples, pears and grapes

This delicious combination of fruit always appears at parties over the holiday season and are also used as decoration.

Eggnog

A sweetened, dairy-based beverage that’s traditionally made with milk or cream, whipped eggs and sugar. Spirits such as brandy, rum or bourbon are often added. It is usually garnished with a sprinkling of powdered cinnamon or nutmeg. No Dominican Christmas could be considered complete without it.

Now you know what to try during your December holidays in the beautiful Dominican Republic – bon appetit and happy holidays!

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