Are you ready for your Christmas dinner? | Archives


Have you organised your ‘special day’ food arrangements just yet? Well, if not, you’d better get on with it a bit sharpish because you have just three short days to get it all right or suffer the utter humiliation of producing…a bit of a disaster darling! As a bloke who likes his grub, but rarely cooks anything meaningful, I have to say that this time of year has to be a bit of a nightmare for those among us who seek to produce a fab Christmas dinner/lunch for loved one’s and other stray relatives whilst looking both calm and collected into the bargain. Although I am as keen as mustard, my culinary skills are a little short of non-existent.

However, in my defence I am both a good shopper and someone who rejoices in the ability of being extremely competent in the area of ‘prep’ or as some would have it….food preparation. Indeed, whilst many amongst you will showboat around the kitchen at this time of year pretending to be some sort of artiste in delivery of delicious Christmas dinner - some of us will have done all the hard work already, as in scraping vegetables, peeling potatoes, and generally making it all possible, for he or she, to show off in embarrassing fashion about the quality of their (let’s face it) rather basic roast dinner with over-cooked vegetables. However, moving away from the kitchen for a moment, what about the problem of when inviting family or friends to join you, such as - where do you seat them when you have only limited spaces around your dinner table? Do you tell the husband of your next door neighbour to make other arrangements ‘cos you don’t have space for him, or do you think about setting up another table alongside for stray invitees? God this gets complicated doesn’t it?

Hey, and I haven’t even started on the politics of when and what can be eaten now that everyone seems to have some sort of social, health, religious or lifestyle limitations for what used to be a sort of ‘everyman’ Christmas dinner. Anyway, back to the kitchen where I am still peeling sprouts by the kilo and wondering why the turkey is taking so long to brown, I have also decided to take a small nip of a rather nice and ‘not-like-me-at-all’ expensive Shiraz and have been admonished by a woman I know, who doubts my capacity to fulfil my kitchen duties when enjoying a nice glass (or three) of wine.

Anyway, mostly all these issues sort themselves out, and when your guests or family members have disappeared after eating you out of house-and-home - and as you settle down to watch yet another repeat on the television of Mrs Brown’s Boys Christmas Special - you do wonder what all the fuss has been about - don’t you; but it was worth it wasn’t it…wasn’t it?

One last thought however - does anyone nowadays actually give a ‘Christmas box’ i.e. cash to folk such as - rubbish bin-men, postmen or any other person who undertakes a regular service for you and your family? Time was…that if you didn’t leave some sort of yuletide tip the next time your rubbish was collected half of it would be found scattered about in your garden. Moreover, letters would take an awful long time in arriving, if at all for at least a fortnight into the new year. I only bring up this subject as we are having a debate as to whether we should part with some cash as in the days of yore - or doesn’t anyone do this sort of thing anymore? With this in mind, a very merry Christmas to you all.