Christmas is a time for families, friends and communities to get together and share food and drink and each other’s company.

The City community is no different. As an international University in the heart of London where the world’s best come to learn and educate, so many traditions come together. Whether you start Christmas morning with a prosecco or M&Ms, we hope you have the chance this holiday to meet friends and family to enjoy a meal or party. Maybe some of these dishes will inspire your own culinary experiments. Each link takes you through to a recipe from our collections on CityLibrary Search.

The big meal

Read more about the history of “traditional Christmas Dinners” through CityLibrary Search 


  • Home made rich spicy Christmas cake “Very special, can’t get it at any other time”
  • Mince pies, mulled wine, tin of well known confectionery, alcohol, cheese” says one member of staff “I also like to pull a Christmas cracker”. We’re not going there.

Explore the sweet meats of yesteryear through CityLibrary Search


Sweeties and snacks

  •  A family tub of Cheetoes “it’s low maintainence” says one member of staff.
  • Catie says she has Prosecco first thing in the morning on Christmas Day (UK) OR M&Ms all day long (US) . Why not both this year?

Find out more about how Christmas parties were organised in the past through CityLibrary Search




  • Cherry Brandy Samantha says “It’s a lovely treat I only have once every two years with my mother-in-law at Christmas when we visit them and we will always say to each other from about 9am onwards, “Is it a bit early for a cherry brandy?” before finally succumbing at about 3pm after our meal.”
  • Hot toddy “After a busy few months from Oct – Dec I inevitably get ill over the Christmas vacation and a hot toddy with the medicinal whiskey, lemon, and honey with the warming spices of cinnamon and cloves is like a hug from one of Santa’s cuter and more approachable reindeer in a mug” says Rachel.
  • Mulled wine “Just love that cinnamon and orange slices” says one member of staff. “A proper winter warmer in a cup. Cracking” says another.
  • A whisky mac, nothing else will do. Late in the evening, settled in my chair with the Christmas tree lights on and sipping a warming whisky mac, despite the cold, the wind, the rain or snow.

Find out more about what makes a Christmas drink with CityLibrary Search.


If all else fails

Cheese! “Every year, Christmas Day evening,” Chloe says, “we will have a cheese board and play fun board games”.


This year (2017) the Northampton Square Library will be open 27th – 29th December 10 am – 6 PM for self-service and reference only use. Check Library Services website for more information on library opening times.

What’s your favourite festive food? Tell us below.

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