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Hosting Christmas? Here's our Top Tips to Help you Prepare!

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Hosting Christmas? Here's our Top Tips to Help you Prepare!

Fancy, snow-covered enticing adverts on television, Santa arriving in the shopping centre and chocolate gift sets as far as the eye can see can only mean one thing. Yep, we’re officially now in Christmas mode. However we feel about December 25th (and the weeks either side) – excited or stressed – if we’re hosting, it adds a whole other layer of preparation and planning. Aside from buying gifts and thinking about what to wear to the office party, we have to think about what we’re cooking, when we’re cooking it and where to seat everyone.

Here’s how to make sure your hosting goes off with a bang!

  • Planning is everything. Having a contingency plan is everything. Pick up a pen and paper, take a deep breath, and start scribbling. Start off with what you’re cooking for the main event. Turkey and all the trimmings or something less traditional, write down each course as if you were writing a menu. Add in everything from starters to sides, drinks to dessert. Think about how you’re going to cater for veggies, vegans, the gluten free and the diet conscious. Write down extras such as breakfast for those staying over, where everyone is going to sit and what time you’d like to be eating by.
  • Now write a separate shopping list, using your menu as a guide. Plan in a few hours to either go shopping, or to place your online shop.
  • When it comes to starters, go for simplicity. Many supermarkets offer deals on platters and things you can easily put on a baking tray and shut the over door on. (Just don’t forget to put your timer on, especially if the cork on the bubbly has already been popped.)
  • Or, some time before the big day, talk to your guests about everyone bringing something. One might bring starters, someone else might bring the Christmas pudding whilst another might bring all the snacks. A word of warning though, whilst this saves you money, everyone needing to use your oven, workspaces or sink might result in chaos and asking for financial contributions might actually make things easier.
  • Preparing the veggies the day before will save you valuable time on Christmas morning to spend opening pressies, putting on your best frock or pouring the Bucks Fizz. Peel, slice and dice everything including the carrots, greens and Brussels sprouts and pop them into saucepans and cover them with water. They’re perfectly fine left out overnight. Peel, parboil and drain your potatoes too, they’re also fine to be left out overnight.
  • Get the oven on early then when it’s hot, get your meat in to roast. Set your timer so you know when you’ll need to tend to it and before you know it, it’ll be out of the oven resting before carving.
  • When your guests start to arrive, embrace the party spirit! This is when your contingency plan can kick in if it needs to. And by this we mean, whatever happens, happens! If your roast potatoes aren’t quite as crispy as you’d like them or your gravy has lumps, in the grand scheme of things, who cares? Your guests are all relieved it’s not them hosting, any minor fails on your part will most definitely go unnoticed. And if there’s major fails? Then they’ll go down in history as something that, come New Years’ Eve when it’s someone else’s turn, you’ll be laughing about.

Cheers, have a great one!

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