Complete Christmas menu: Classic
It's easy to get carried away with a Christmas menu, so sometimes it's good to strip things back to basics. We've put together an all-time definitive feasting menu for timeless festive dining.
It's sometimes a labour of love, but the final result is always worth any minor kitchen stress. First plan your grand centrepiece, then build up your banquet from there.
Use up some of your home-smoked salmon in a soufflé - you can't get much more impressive than that.
Smoked salmon soufflés
If you like your traditional paté coarse, try making a terrine with chicken, duck, bacon and mixed game meat.
Serve up some vibrant green soup dotted with Christmas blue cheese.
Broccoli & Stilton soup
A whole roast bird with classic sage and onion flavours, sausagemeat stuffing and a rich gravy - what Christmas is all about.
Roast turkey with pecan, sausage & chestnut stuffing
If you don't want to be eating leftovers into the new year, try roasting a more modestly-sized turkey crown.
Moist turkey crown with chestnut truffle stuffing
Turkey really benefits from the addition of citrus - it flavours the skin and releases steam that keeps the meat moist.
Orange & tarragon roast turkey
Don't fancy a big bird?
Cater for vegetarians by making a traditional nut roast with a twist - serve it in thick slices.
Parsnip, cranberry & chestnut loaf
If you want a change from turkey, a goose is also big enough to feed a crowd, and it yields great gravy.
Classic roast goose with cider gravy
A home-baked ham can be served as a centerpiece on the big day, or cold on a buffet.
Baked ham with brown sugar & mustard glaze
It wouldn't be Christmas dinner without key traditional trimmings. There are leftovers most years, so use them up with our economical recipes.
Chestnut, bacon & cranberry stuffing
Sausage, sage & onion stuffing
Bacon, sausage & prune rolls
Perfect roast potatoes
Caramelised shallot mash
Brussels sprouts with pancetta
Crisp honey mustard parsnips
Caramelised carrots & onions
Cabbage with bacon & onions
Christmas spiced red cabbage
Gravy for the Christmas turkey
Really simple cranberry sauce
All-in-one bread sauce
Give it a couple of hours and everyone will be ready to come back for a sweet treat.
Make on the day
Layers of cream, custard, fruit, sponge and maybe even a drizzle of sherry - trifle is a real retro treat.
Mary's royal cherry trifle
If you fancy something a little lighter, try poaching fruit - pears are in season in December.
Poached pears in spiced tea
A dense traditional Christmas pudding can be made months in advance and left to mature in its basin.
Guinness, treacle & ginger pudding
Make the sponge for your Yule log in advance, then decorate with chocolate frosting just before serving.
Yule chocolate log
Freeze this ice cream bombe overnight - it has all the rum and raisin joy of a Christmas pudding, but is a lighter way to finish a meal.
Boozy Christmas bombe
After a snooze on the sofa, settle down for the night and make some room to finish off proceedings with traditional nibbles.
Assembled your cheeseboard and didn't get any chutney in your Christmas hamper? Whip up this no-cook apple mix in minutes.
No-cook spiced apple chutney
Before you dig into the bumper-sized tin of chocolates, try out some homemade caramel truffles
Melting middle truffles
If you have a net of traditional mixed nuts to use up, try toasting them with some mixed spice and honey.
Sweet & spicy nuts
Looking for more festive inspiration? Visit our Christmas kitchen for hundreds of Yuletide recipes.