Artful Advice

Papier’s family favourite festive recipes

Cherished family recipes for the season from the Papier team.

Words & Images


Papier’s family favourite festive recipes

Every family has festive traditions – from delightful decorations that are pulled out year after year, to treasured tunes that are still played on a record player. No matter how you celebrate the season, it’s likely your loved ones have a delicious dish or two they love to devour. The Papier team is filled with talented paper people from across the globe. This year, we’re sharing some of our special seasonal recipes that have been handed down from loved ones and scribbled into our recipe journals. These are treasured dishes that are inseparable from the memories of those we’ve eaten them with, special recipes that we’re sharing from our table to yours. We hope that whoever you’re with this season, these dishes can bring the festive warmth of home to your holiday.

Yulia, Head of Community and Social
Bulgarian banitsa

Who taught you this recipe?
Banitsa is a Bulgarian staple and as such, there are hundreds of different ways to make it. This recipe is my mum’s, and it’s one of the easiest ones out there.

How do you eat it?
It’s a centrepiece on the festive table but we often have it at the end of the Christmas meal as a savoury dessert. We also put a coin and sometimes a piece of dogwood branch with a bud, symbolising health and wealth. Everyone has a slice, it’s an unwritten rule!

What’s your favourite memory of eating this dish?
A few years ago I took on the task of making the family Christmas banitsa and decided to experiment and tweak the recipe by adding cheddar and cumin. It was controversial.

Best served with...
Honestly, it’s tasty enough to just have it on its own.

What's your recipe journal of choice?
Herb Garden.

50g butter (melted), plus extra to grease
4 large eggs
400g Greek natural yogurt
1 tsp baking powder
15 sheets filo pastry, roughly two 250g packs
300g white salad cheese or feta, crumbled

Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan 180°C, gas 4. Grease a baking dish with butter (glass pyrex pan works great for this recipe).
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, yogurt, butter and baking soda.
Lay the base of your buttered dish with 5 sheets of filo pastry, scrunching each like a concertina.
Drizzle over 1/3 of the egg and yogurt mixture and scatter over 1/2 of the feta.
Repeat with the remaining sheets of pastry, and spoon the rest of the egg and yogurt mixture on top.
Bake for 45 minutes, or until risen and golden brown. Remove from the oven, cover with a clean cloth and leave to cool until warm.


Gabriela, Junior Copywriter
Mauritian dholl puri

Who taught you this recipe?
Dholl puri is a street food staple in Mauritius – always buy two, because one is never enough. Mum grew up eating them on the island, and this recipe is now a non-negotiable dish for every big family party.

How do you eat it?
We always have dholl puri at the beginning of Christmas lunch. We’ll pass around big plates and eat with our hands standing up, while we all chat and catch up.

What’s your favourite memory of eating this dish?
It's hard to pick one – it’s synonymous with all the Christmases at my grandparents’ house. Big feasts with lots of laughter, all of us talking over each other. It's a very fun, informal dish, just like my family.

Best served with...
Fill dholl puri with chatiny pomme d’amour: a tomato chutney made with finely-chopped, oven-baked tomatoes, onion, garlic and coriander. We usually dip dholl puri in a little of my grandmother’s famous green chilli sauce (sorry, that recipe remains a closely-guarded secret). Enjoy with your loved ones and a glass of champagne.

What's your recipe journal of choice?
The Secret Garden.

1/2 kg yellow split peas (soaked overnight)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (lightly dry roasted)
1 kg plain flour
1 tbsp vegetable oil

Crush roasted cumin seeds using mortar and pestle.
Boil the yellow split peas in fresh water with salt and turmeric until peas are tender. Drain and blend.
Sift flour, adding salt and vegetable oil. Add small amounts of water until you have a smooth dough.
Knead dough for about 5 minutes, then let it rest for 30 minutes.
Divide dough into small balls, then flatten and place one tablespoon of yellow split pea mixture in the middle. Seal the edges so you have a ball filled with the split pea mixture.
Sprinkle flour on your work surface, then flatten the balls into thin, flat rotis.
Warm a little oil on high heat, and fry. Flip after cooking one side and brush with more oil. Serve with chatini pomme d’amour.

Nick, Senior Front End Developer
Aussie Pavlova

Who taught you this recipe?
My mum! She’s the best and has been making them for years!

How do you eat it?
It’s been a little while since I’ve seen my family for Christmas, but usually we’d have a big group of about 20. The pav comes out at the end, just when everyone thinks they can’t possibly eat any more!

What’s your favourite memory of eating this dish?
Probably the last year we spent with my grandpa! I have such great memories of him and even though he hated pavlova, it was always so much fun giving him a hard time about it.

Best served with…
The rest of a traditional Australian Christmas of course. Prawns, cold ham and turkey, BBQ, potato bake and a beer. What more could you ask for?

What's your recipe journal of choice?
Vegetable medley.

6 egg whites
400 g caster sugar
100 g white sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
2 tsp lemon juice
230 g cream
Strawberries and passionfruit

Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Beat eggs whites until stiff peaks form.
Gradually add caster sugar to the egg whites and mix until mixture becomes thick and glossy.
Mix white sugar and cornflour together in a separate bowl.
Fold sugar mixture and lemon juice into egg white mixture.
Place mixture on baking tray and mould into a circle about a dinner plate size.
Bake at 150C (fan forced) for 45 minutes – 1 hour. It will be ready when it is dry to touch. Allow to cool in the oven with the door ajar.
Once cool, decorate with cream and topping of choice.

Now it’s your turn to start cooking. To create your own kitchen keepsake filled with festive family dishes, choose your recipe journal here. If you need some culinary inspiration, we’ve gathered our favourite tips and tricks for recipe journaling here.