This is probably the one time of year when people who aren't party-givers give parties. Sometimes, this is due to an uncharacteristic but nevertheless welcome burst of bonhomie and seasonal spirit; as often, it's a duty-date, the product of habit, pressure or other presumed or existing obligations. For as many people who feel a blood-rushing joyousness at the prospect of having their home overrun with people out to have a good time, there are perhaps more who are filled rather with dread, and lacerated by the anxiety that a good time will be neither provided nor had.
This may be a strange thing to say, but if it's the cooking that makes you not enjoy giving a party, don't cook. Buy salame, get cheese, put grissini in jars and regular French breadsticks in vases. But know that, sometimes, the act of preparing for a feast, by cooking simple, low-effort food, can make you look forward to the party more.
And, actually, I think that a Christmas party is the best sort to give. For one thing, everyone is predisposed to have a good time. They're out to enjoy themselves: they're not coming to carp at your canapes.
It is not quite normal to feel as joyous as I do when saying the words “Brussels sprouts”, but this recipe does not merely…Read on
Christmas pudding isn’t for everyone and, even though I have faith in my pudding’s ability to convert, there’s no…Read on
I know it might sound a bit of a faff, but take it from me that stuffing a whole double breast joint is very much easier than stuffing…Read on