Christmas can be an extremely busy time of year with shopping, seeing friends and family, wrapping presents and all the chaos in between! That’s why, the more prepped and ready you can be the better, and where better to start than with the food! Most of Christmas day can be filled with food prep for the main roast dinner, so why not check out these quick hacks to have a stress free, fully prepped day by doing the cooking in advance!
1. Christmas Relish
All Christmas leftovers need a heaped spoon of chutney or relish to be served with it, so why not make a few jars ready for the bubble and squeak! This keeps forever (seems like it!) and if you have any leftover you could always give some jars as gifts.
2. Puff Pastry
Nothing beats homemade pastry and it is used with some many Christmas classics such as pastry breakfasts, mince pies and sausage rolls however, it can be a long process. Why not make a huge batch and freeze it ready for those tasty treats.
3. Mince Pies
Mince pies are eaten over the entire Christmas season, so it is good to always have a batch cooking in the oven for possible guests. You can completely make these freeze them and then cook them – easy!
Gravy is the roast dinner essential and is important to get right, so give yourself time to practise and perfect and once you have freeze in a tub! Then on the day there is no stress and you can just heat it up!
5. Yule Log
Everyone loves a Yule Log, and now you will too as it is the least stressful dessert possible! This can be completely made and then frozen, easy peasy!
6. Bread Sauce
Often items like bread sauce are forgotten or rushed in the chaos of cooking and dishing up the roast dinner, so take your time and make it in advance, freeze it and list it out on Christmas morning to defrost and be ready to heat up with a splash of milk.
Whether its chestnut, pork or sage and onion, the stuffing can be prepped and rolled into balls (or shape of choice) well before the big day if they’re frozen. Note, if you are using sausagemeat then check it is fresh and hasn’t previously been frozen!
8. Roast Potatoes
Crispy roasties are the absolute best, so why not get them going early and ensure that they will be extra crispy, whilst being beautifully homemade! You can peel, chop and parboil them until soft and then simply freeze them ready for the big day, all thats left to do is put them in the oven!
9. Roasted Parsnips
In the same way the potatoes are done, just parboil your parsnips and keep them in the freezer! You could even do them with the roasties to save time and space.
10. Gingerbread Men
Decorating and baking are all part of the family fun over Christmas, but why not prep all the gingerbread dough and freeze it to save some of the mess (and the boring part for the kids) so you can get straight to cutting out shapes and decorating once it has defrosted.
11. Pigs In Blankets
Why not wrap all those little chipolatas or party sausages in streaky bacon well before the day and then just pop them in a tub to freeze, fiddly jobs like this can be really time-consuming so its great to get them out the way.
12. Nut Roast
If you have a veggie or vegan guest this year, or just want to switch it up then definitely make it before hand and freeze it ready for the big day. This will actually make it taste better as the flavours will be richer and nuttier once cooked.
13. Favourite Veg
No need to spend Christmas morning peeling and chopping veg, when you can get all this done a month before! Simply prep all the vegetables you’re going to boil on the day such as carrots, broccoli, sprouts etc and freeze them to cook from frozen when needed.
14. Christmas Pudding
This is the star of the show, and even people that aren’t partial to the taste with normally have a slice! By now your freezer is probably overflowing so you’ll be glad to hear the cake is best left in a cool, dark place to mature perfectly.
15. Rum Or Brandy Butter
And of course, what would Christmas pudding be without the indulgently delicious sauce to cover it and keep it hot and moist. The sauce can be frozen once cooled and then smply reheated on the day with a splash of cream; all this talk of Christmas food has got us hungry!
All these frozen, time hacks for your Christmas feasts can be made late November as they will stay delicious frozen for around a month, so put your feet up and enjoy the holiday season!