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Doing a buffet on Xmas day instead of traditional sit down meal?

(51 Posts)
guestofclanmackenzie Sat 07-Oct-17 10:58:46

I'm hosting this year.. For approx 12/14.

Due to the disaster the year before last which consisted of stress/lack of space/bad layout of my living and eating areas I've decided to do a Xmas day buffet instead of a traditional Xmas meal.

Im a bit stumped as to what dishes to do that are special but easy to prepare ahead?

Any suggestions?

tistheseason2bjolly Sat 07-Oct-17 11:04:54

I love buffet style! Great for families with fussy children.

As for what to have, make what your family likes- whether it be traditionally Christmas food or just food they love.

I'm planning on making a Chinese take-away buffet.
With a few hours later desserts from M&S.

mateysmum Sat 07-Oct-17 11:06:11

What sort of thing are you thinking off? Still Christmas type food, or just general prepare ahead stuff? What do you and yours enjoy?
For instance, curries are ideal to prepare ahead, but not typical festive fare.
You could cook a turkey on xmas eve, take off and reheat the meat. Things like dauphinoise potatoes can be prepared ahead then cooked on the day.

Thingvellir Sat 07-Oct-17 11:12:32

I’d be really sad not to have trad Xmas dinner on the day, but then I’ve never catered for 14 people!

You should do what works for a festive and relaxed day for everyone, including you. What about making sure everyone has their favourite food represented on the table? Could be fun

Handsoffmysweets Sat 07-Oct-17 12:02:34

I think this is a great idea. Cook up a turkey and a ham so that people can have sliced meats, some nice potatoes, chutneys etc. I think a buffet will be lovely X

Santawontbelong Sat 07-Oct-17 12:03:41

Delegate. .
No way should you have to provide allthe food!!

PotteringAlong Sat 07-Oct-17 12:04:42

I'm going to be the voice of dissent, but I think it's a dreadful idea. A buffet does not a Christmas lunch make...

Santawontbelong Sat 07-Oct-17 12:07:05

Totally agree Pottering. . I do Xmas dinner for 12 ever year but if the op has family who aren't helpful /ungrateful I can see why the buffet idea being best for her!!

PressPaws Sat 07-Oct-17 12:07:10

We always do a buffet. We have cold meats, potato salad, garden salad, special cheeses, breads and chutneys, then pudding, berries and cream. I'm in Australia though, so there's no pressure to have a hot meal when it's warm (usually - we did have snow one year!)

BrieAndChilli Sat 07-Oct-17 12:08:44

We did a buffet one year at the request of the kids. It was just as much work as a roast dinner really and just didn’t feel like we’d had a proper xmas! We have a buffet Boxing Day and love buffet picky bits so it wasn’t that as a buffet is part of xmas too, it just made the day feel a bit odd,

Bucketsandspoons Sat 07-Oct-17 12:09:14

Mini toad in the holes, different types of stuffing, pigs in blankets or different kinds of gourmet sausages, different kinds of potatoes- (much of this if you want you can buy in ready to go, slam in the oven and heat on the day, such as roast, jacket, dauphinoise) - a ham, turkey or nice joint of beef is easy to do and have ready to carve, fresh bread, crudites, as Hands says a nice range of chutneys, pickles, sauces and a cheese board?

onlyonaTuesday Sat 07-Oct-17 12:10:41

Turkey crown
Ham
Pigs in blankets
Pate
Cheese board
Chutney
Pickles
Smoked salmon
Prawns
Assorted breads and crackers
Xmas pud
Cheese cake
Trifle
Brandy butter
I love a Christmas buffet

Floralnomad Sat 07-Oct-17 12:11:59

I can understand your reasoning but have you told the people who are coming because you may find that some of them drop out . We have a buffet Christmas Eve and in recent years have also done the same on Boxing Day so I'd be pretty miffed if I went somewhere for Christmas dinner and it wasn't a Christmas dinner IYSWIM .

Floralnomad Sat 07-Oct-17 12:13:25

Agree totally with pp , your guests should all be bringing a component of the meal .

Chestervase1 Sat 07-Oct-17 12:13:49

I think buffets are more Boxing Day. Saying that the thought of catering for 14 with very little space is a nightmare. You could still do a turkey or crown and I would have plenty of roast potatoes and parsnips. Vegetables and salads on the side.

We always have seafood anyway so not very traditional here either.
I think a buffet would be good if lots of children.

ijustwannadance Sat 07-Oct-17 12:16:14

Get a couple of those 3 bird roast joints with stuffing through the middle. They are great.
Definately get guests to bring something each. Nice bread/cheese etc.

SlatternIsTrying Sat 07-Oct-17 13:24:16

I love a buffet but if I was turning up on Christmas Day I would expect a traditional dinner. But I would also have asked the hostess in advance what I could do to help.

loveka Sat 07-Oct-17 13:31:32

Have a look in Nigella Lawson's Christmas book. She has a whole chapter on what she calls The Welcome Table.

AnnieOH1 Sat 07-Oct-17 13:39:13

We have our Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve; then Christmas Day becomes the traditional bank holiday leftover buffet thing. I think everyone will expect turkey but you can prep this in advance and serve it cold. We have 3/4 meats for dinner which provide a good array of cold platters the next day. Then just add an array of cheeses, fruit, jellies and chutneys and some nice bread.

That said if I had been invited somewhere for Christmas Day I would expect a Christmas Dinner and I think I'd feel somewhat cheated if I didn't get it. That being the case I would probably prep the usual dinner accompaniments (in your position I mean) and then people can have a Christmas Dinner even if it isn't a formal sit down meal. There's nothing wrong though with having people perch wherever they can, or ask them to bring extra chairs or tables. It's about being with family and friends not about recreating Downton Abbey!

Badders08 Sat 07-Oct-17 13:42:16

Im planning to do this this year!
I'm thinking I might do a side of salmon
I don't like any Xmas food tbh (turkey, Xmas pud, xmas cake or mince pies etc)
Kids don't either so this year will be different

timeforbedsleepyhead80 Sat 07-Oct-17 13:57:21

We always have a buffet for Boxing Day lunch. I love it, far better than Christmas Day lunch for me! It's usually the left overs from the day before plus extras but you could easily do this with some cold meats cooked the day before (we normally have turkey and gammon plus cold pigs in blankets) maybe some baked potatoes or a job lot of mash, lots of cheeses and crackers, salads, dips etc. Yum!

ALemonyPea Sat 07-Oct-17 14:14:56

I’d love to do this. Might do it in a few years time when DC are older. I’d have:

Sliced turkey
Sliced gammon
Cristy bread and butter
Roasties
Few buffet things from M&S
Chinese stuff
Indian stuff
Pickles
Cheese board
Mini puddings
Christmas cake

Normalserviceissuspended Sat 07-Oct-17 14:41:02

Have you told the guests? I have to say that I would decline.

PatriciaHolm Sat 07-Oct-17 14:46:39

Blimey. Some of you don’t like your families much, do you? Would you really decline a family Christmas in a fit of pique because the person kind enough to feed 14 people decide, after the hell that was the previous time, not to spend all day slaving over a roast for you all?

We’ve had family Christmas’s both ways - I cook, other Inlaws buffet, we all have a lovely family Christmas either way.

DottyDotAgain Sat 07-Oct-17 14:48:22

I cooked for 14 people last year (including 2 × vegetarian and 1 x gluten-free!) and did the usual Xmas dinner but put everything in dishes on the island unit buffet-style and it worked really well! It felt quicker for everyone to get what they wanted and then sit down - gravy and condiments were all on the table and people could go back up for more if they wanted. I cooked the turkey very early in the morning so it had rested and I carved it before people came. Someone brought a roast duck and I did a nut roast (M&S!) for the veggies. 14 again this year and I'll definitely be doing the same thing!

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