Need some inspiration for Christmas dinner

(11 Posts)
AndiMac Mon 09-Dec-13 14:48:10

Once again, it's just the 4 of us for Christmas; me, DH, DD7 and DS4. That's not a problem, but to me, with just 4 people, it's hard to hit that balance to get a special Christmas dinner, rather than an overly-extravagant feast or an average weekend roast. Can any of you inspire with ideas?

We have a nice butcher near us where we've previously bought a stuffed turkey crown, but I'd like to shake things up a bit. Was considering a standing rib roast, but I've never made one before, so not sure if it's that great an idea to start trying with Christmas dinner! The kids are pretty good about eating plain roast vegetables and usually good with meat, so I don't have to cater to their tastes too much.

Some ideas for mains, sides and grown-up cocktails would be very inspiring. Plus anything I can prep in advance would be great too. fsmile

girlywhirly Mon 09-Dec-13 15:26:01

Go and ask the butcher what they would recommend, they are full of hints and tips on cooking methods, quantities per person etc for all the cuts. Ours does a carvery rib, which is rib joint boned and rolled so that it looks similar to a topside joint.

Hobbes8 Mon 09-Dec-13 15:36:06

We had pheasant one year, which was a nice alternative to turkey. Not many leftovers though.

LineRunner Mon 09-Dec-13 15:47:11

Nigel Slater was raving about goose on the tellybox yesterday, and he did make it look very good.

bzoo Mon 09-Dec-13 15:49:17

We are having gazpacho in shot glasses then quail before we have the main dinner.

AndiMac Mon 09-Dec-13 16:22:42

Ooh, these are all nice ideas, keep them coming!

velvetmoon Mon 09-Dec-13 17:23:15

We're having partridge this year - really looking forward to it! Again, you won't have many leftovers, but if you were going to do a ham etc. then that might not matter.

Alternatively, duck might be a nice idea - easy to pick one up at this time of year and a bit of a variation from turkey.

marzipanned Mon 09-Dec-13 17:33:09

We have done goose when there were just a few of us. It is delicious but quite gamey - sounds like your kids will probably be okay with that, though?

I love red cabbage with any roast meat, but particularly with stronger tasting birds, and you can make it several days in advance. I braise it with sugar, vinegar, apples, onions and raisins.

Lots of ideas for cocktails here - www.bbc.co.uk/food/collections/christmas_cocktails

I would add that if you want to do a standing rib roast, they are not that hard to get right, and if you're a reasonably confident cook then I wouldn't feel nervous about doing it for the first time at Christmas! Especially if different members of the family like different levels of done-ness.

AndiMac Mon 09-Dec-13 18:47:29

Can you get goose of a size for 4 people? I don't mind leftovers, but is don't want to have to buy a 6 pound bird to get enough meat for 4 of us. I've only done one once for 6 adults and if I recall correctly, it was huge at the start and we had no leftovers at the end.

We had a traumatic experience with a duck for Christmas one year (officially known as The Year of the Green Innards and Cold Ham for Christmas Dinner) so I'm not sure I'm ready to try that again. Partridge sounds lovely however.

AndiMac Mon 09-Dec-13 18:48:02

And red cabbage is very much a good idea!

marzipanned Mon 09-Dec-13 19:25:04

Hmm, that I don't know. I suspect you might end up with rather a lot of leftovers for 2 adults + 2 kids. But you could always freeze them in portions the right size for pie/risotto/etc. And you do get such lovely fat from a goose... smile (Partridge also very delicious, and kids might like the partridge in a pear tree reference?)

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