Christmas crackers: what to put in these traditional papillotes?

Christmas crackers are a tradition straight from England. On the table at mealtime, some hosts can place a few for their guests. But what is it exactly? How to make it homemade? And where can I buy ready-made ones?

  Christmas crackers: what to put in these traditional papillotes?

At the time of the end-of-year celebrations, certain customs take on their full meaning, such as crackers de  Christmas . These cardboard foils, wrapped in colorful gift paper, are legion in England. The British have a tradition of Christmas to place crackers, also called Christmas crackers , on the plates of each guest at mealtime. Inside hides one or more surprises. Once at the table, the guests can open them and appreciate what they have received. Since then, the habit has remained with our neighbors across the Channel but has also settled in France with certain families. Crackers are even sometimes present on New Year's Day. Christmas crackers are both a pretty decoration for the table, and a nice or funny touch for each of the guests.

What is the origin of the tradition of Christmas crackers?

Christmas crackers are an English tradition, but which found its inspiration in France and more precisely in Paris. According to the story, crackers were created in 1847 by an English assistant baker named Tom Smith. On a trip to Paris, he would have been inspired by the sugared almonds he would have seen wrapped in a foil wrapper. The idea germinated in his head and he decided to take up this concept of a tube-shaped wrapper to insert the treats he was making and sell them.

What's inside Christmas crackers?

Typically, traditional Christmas crackers contain riddles, confetti, and sometimes little surprises. In other more original versions, you can find sweets, treats, and even cosmetics inside. Some also put harmless firecrackers in the crackers for humor, so that it makes noise when the person opens it.

How to make Christmas crackers yourself?

Making Christmas crackers requires very little material. You will need:

  • Paper gift
  • Canson-style A4 sheets
  • Empty toilet paper rolls
  • Rule
  • Crayon
  • Pair of scissors or a box cutter
  • Ribbon

All you have to do is fill them with surprises!

What to put in Christmas crackers?

Depending on your budget and your desires, you can put almost anything you want in the Christmas crackers. The main thing is that it can fit in a small format. To please your guests, you can slip in:

  • a mini hand cream,
  • a lip balm,
  • a nice pen,
  • a tea bag,
  • a pair of fancy earrings,
  • a homemade darling,
  • a keyring,
  • a perfume miniature, etc.

You are free to do according to the tastes of each of your guests or what you have to show them. One thing is certain, a nice and personalized note will always please and make a good start to start the festive meal!

Where to buy ready-made Christmas crackers?

Many stores sell Christmas crackers already filled and ready to use. You can find them in Monoprix, Hema, Zodio, Leroy Merlin, Le Comptoir Irlandais stores and those of the Grande Épicerie de Paris. Some e-commerce sites like Amazon also offer them for sale.