Christmas dinner eaten elsewhere.

edited 6 December 2020 at 12:16AM in Old style MoneySaving
31 replies 8.5K views
JILJIL Forumite
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edited 6 December 2020 at 12:16AM in Old style MoneySaving
Sorry about the title I really couldn't think what to call it.

Like many other families its going to be a very different Christmas this year. My parents and the in laws usually come to us.  If I'm honest I dont think either are keen on leaving the house anyway. So we need to improvise.

  As I dont think they are in the best of health to be cooking a big dinner,  we have offered to do the cooking and will deliver them a two course meal to each household on Christmas day. This has been welcomed and appreciated.

Any tips?  Do I just plate up four meals and let them microwave them and serve seperate containers of gravy or do I do something else? 
Can I make it special, do I add Christmas crackers or nibbles or mince pies? 
Do I include wine?

What would you do, they are all over 80.


  • BramblingBrambling Forumite
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    What a lovely idea.  

    I would probably 'ping' the dinner with the gravy on to stop it drying out.  I think crackers, wine and mince pies are a nice idea, maybe with some brandy butter which they could share between the Xmas pud if you're providing it and them.  If they're not big drinkers you could buy small bottles of wine 

    What about some nice chocolates or after dinner mints.  Do you have something which is a family tradition for Christmas Day which you could include in the package 

    what kind of appetites do they have as I wouldn't want to over whelm them with a too full plate
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  • Wicked_LadyWicked_Lady Forumite
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    Depends on a lot of things really but, yes, I'd include crackers, after dinner mints and festive napkins. How are they getting their food orders, as they can buy wine, cheese, biscuits etc beforehand so you have less to transport?

    Do they have a microwave to help with reheating? The individual Christmas puddings are very easy to do and they could leave them until later in the day if preferred.
  • edited 6 December 2020 at 11:07AM
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    edited 6 December 2020 at 11:07AM
    If you have a 'cool bag' or something like it will also act as a heat retainer while you transport hot food, if you have a hot water bottle too, filled just before you leave, sealed in a waterproof plastic bag (in case of gravy) and placed in the bottom of the bag before you put the food containers in it will make sure it arrives at destination still piping hot.

    Our fish and chip shop serves up into the polystyrene containers and they would be likely to sell you a few if you needed them.
  • edited 6 December 2020 at 4:13PM
    JILJIL Forumite
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    edited 6 December 2020 at 4:13PM

    Thanks to all replies so far.
    They arent too far away, ten mins by car. 
    Both sets of parents have microwave ovens, so reheating should not be a problem. I'm a bit bothered as when they come for dinner they help themselves so I've no idea of their food preferences although I know one doesn't like gravy and another doesn't eat brussel sprouts.

    I'm thinking I may plate up mashed potatoes, roast potatoes, broccoli, peas, carrots, brussel sprouts and do a separate container with meat, stuffing, pigs in blankets. Hopefully they can use as much meat as they want and there could be leftovers for sandwiches later.
    Also I will do a vessel of gravy.
    I thought I would do a box, and put some crackers, napkins, mints, wine etc in the box.
    Dessert will probably be apple pie ( a favourite) so this can be cut up as needed and I will pop in some cream and individual custard tubs.
    Am I missing anything, is there anything else I can do to add a bit more to a special day under difficult circumstances?
  • FlossFloss Forumite
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    Perhaps check with each couple as to their preferences - they may all hate sprouts,they may be expecting Christmas pudding, they may wish to have enough mash & veg to make bubble & squeak on Boxing Day.

    I've done Christmas lunch for a working brother in the past that was plated with a small flask of gravy & a wedge of pudding, put into a box with a cracker, napkins & collected by taxi 😁
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  • mamanmaman Forumite
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    Thanks for starting the thread. 😊

    I'm planning to do something similar but the roles are reversed. I'm cooking for my grown up DD who's never cooked a Christmas dinner in her life! 🤣 She and DGD are key workers and don't want to spread any virus they may pick up in the workplace. 

     What about taking napkins and crackers along beforehand so they can set the table? I'm going to buy favourite cheeses and chocolates and biscuits and pickles so they can enjoy what they'd have here. They'll go in an advance 'hamper' with a small Christmas pudding '.

    On the day I'm thinking of putting everything separately in the plastic 'take away' boxes so they can help themselves to what they like best and have some left for bubble & squeak. Reheating won't be a problem and the gravy will be separate. I'll add in some slices of ham too.

    It's not finalised yet. She might have a go herself, as DGD has cooked a dinner in her student house, but I'm going to do the hamper of goodies anyway. I'm just waiting for the latest 'best before' on the cheese. 😊
  • kazwookiekazwookie Forumite
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    Goodness just ask them what they would like..................
    Plate it and delivery, I would also add some fruit.
    :) Sun, Sea :)

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