This year we have offered to host Christmas lunch. We are really looking forward to a fantastic day spent with family and the kids having lots of fun with the excitement and festivities.
So taking into account I am probably planning to cook as much food in one day as I do the entire year, how do I ensure I get to relax and enjoy the day with everybody else?
This is how I’m going about it…..
1. Make a plan
Pre-plan the menu and determine all the items needed including the decorations. Then organise a time to shop “child free” (if you can). Late night opening hours are a big help with this or shop online and get it delivered to reduce the stress of parking and crowds at this time of year.
Also in planning, work through the Christmas day plan. Have it clear in your mind what you need to do and roughly at what time ie. roast in oven at 10am.
TIP: For menu planning it is a good idea to consider foods that can be easily managed on the day or prepared beforehand.
My husband has decided we will cook the chickens this year, however I am still leaning toward the option of pre-ordering some roasted chooks from our local shops. They taste terrific, take 10 minutes to pick up and will free up more space in our oven for the other two roasts we intend to do. It also means a couple less things to think about on the day.
Another way to outsource is asking family members to bring something. I have my sister’s families coming and so have asked they each bring a salad or dessert and of course, mum makes a terrific seafood sauce so she is in charge of the prawns.
Work out the dishes that can be prepared before the day such as cakes and desserts as well as the steps that can be done the night before like marinading and setting the table. Get everything done you can before the day, to allow you more time with your family.
TIP: Layout the serving plates ‘ready to go’ for each of the dishes, labelled with a sticky note. It helps provide a reminder and clarity about what needs to be done and also assists with communication if there is more than one of you assisting in preparing the meals.
Remember this is a festive time and one when you are surrounded by family and loved ones, so at the end of the day make the most to enjoy it! No one will really care if the Turkey is a little dry… definitely not by their third glass of wine!
Merry Christmas …. Enjoy!