You may have heard horror stories about hosting a Christms meal but by staying organised, a Christmas menu can actually be enjoyed by the person who has cooked it. The food will be ready on time and the cook won’t have to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of food or tied to the kitchen missing out on all the festivities.
Here are some tips that we’ve learned over time.
Start with a menu you can enjoy
If you want a relaxing Christmas, use recipes that you’re confident pulling off without too much stress.- Christmas is not the time to decide you are secretly Nigella Lawson or Jamie Oliver and want to embrace your inner Master Chef.
Don’t make Christmas harder than it needs to be
Buy frozen croissants and serve fresh fruit for breakfast, have a cold lunch which can be prepared the day before and make up your salads in the morning. Make your Christmas cake or Chocolate pavlova or even Christmas pudding icecream in advance. Delegate! Share the load. Sit down, relax, enjoy your Christmas – a bit of forward planning, your lists and printables and a few Christmas cocktails will see you right!
What to eat?
When doing your menu planning, think about the following:
- Will you be eating at home? How many will you be catering for?
- Or will you be travelling, with food?
- What’s the weather usually like? Hot or cool?
How to juggle fridge space at Christmas
The week leading up to Christmas puts your family on a mission: eat everything out of the fridge and freezer that’s not being consumed AT Christmas, thus freeing up fridge space. This saves you both space AND money, you aren’t throwing anything away!
- If you’re entertaining many people, hire an extra fridge over the Christmas break, they can be quite inexpensive, or if you’re lucky see if any of your friends or family have a spare one!
- Frugal tip: Delegate some dishes to guests to bring that can be served on their arrival!
- Don’t discount the trusty esky; transfer all drinks to the esky and buy some ice late on Christmas Eve. You can also clean out the recycling bin or toy tubs to make for extra drink storage space.
Money saving tip
Buy pantry items like soft drinks, sweets, nibbles when on special in advance, stash away in your laundry or linen cupboard, out of sight and out of mind. It will save money shopping down the track because all those prices tend to hike up just before Christmas.
What is your favourite thing to eat over Christmas? Mine is pavlova. All of it.
Written by Billie Turei
An environmental goddess who loves to spend her weekends drinking wine and perfecting her Master Chef skills, this little foodie can callback any 90’s hip-hop jam and obscure pop-culture references. You’ll usually find Billie eating Thai food and heading off for impromptu road-trips with her squad.
Favourite food to cure a hangover: Hash browns. All of them.