Food & Drinks

How to have a hassle-free Christmas lunch

An event expert reveals his top at-home Christmas catering tricks.
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Christmas day is nigh! As we finish off our present shopping and stock up our pantries for the impending Christmas feast, it’s time to consider the actual set-up of said meal.

While it’s certainly a highlight of the day, it can be a mad rush to finalise your table setting when you’ve got entrées, mains and desserts cooking on rotation in the kitchen.

Alex Cadger is the founder of The Blonde Butler – a celebrity-loved catering and events company.

(Image: The Blonde Butler)

One of Australia’s most prominent events and catering experts and founder of The Blonde Butler, Alex Cadger, has revealed his top tips for a stress-free Christmas lunch exclusively to Now to Love.

With these helpful tips, forgo the hassle and create a beautiful Christmas moment to share with loved ones.

Don’t overcomplicate

When creating your lunch spread, Alex advises hosts to keep it simple with the meals. Recommending a grazing-style table set-up, he says they are easy to execute and plan ahead of time.

“Charcuterie, cheese, and antipasti are an easy way to impress. Assemble [them] alongside aesthetically pleasing fruit like figs, grapes and berries, muscatels and a variety of crackers an hour before guests arrive,” he said.

Change up the traditional dining formula with a Christmas grazing table.

(Image: The Blonde Butler)

“Experiment with different heights and textures – I love adding a stack of freshly cut figs to the top of a wheel of brie or wedge of cheddar for extra effect.”

As for actual food, “non-fussy” options such as a fish, a meat, a salad, a vegetable, and bread are considered staples.

Maximalist styling

More is more! While you don’t need to overload your table, joyful colours are certainly fitting for this time of year.

“In terms of palette, white is always a safe bet! I love white with dark greens as it’s always chic and classy, but you could easily introduce any colour.”

“For Christmas lunch, I set mine either the day before or morning of with crisp white linen, white crockery, silver cutlery and add a pop of green by way of napkin and floral arrangements.”

More is more!

(Image: The Blonde Butler)

Crown your table with a bunch of fresh flowers to create a sense of Summer freshness.

“You can even pluck some greenery from the garden and fashion into a creative centrepiece down the table,” Alex said.

Time management

WATCH: Enjoy your hard work after ample planning. Article continues after video.

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Planning in advance is the key to a stress-free Christmas day. Set aside an excess of time to tackle food shopping, prep, cooking, and presentation.

An extra handy tip in Alex’s arsenal?

“When I entertain, I break my tasks down into sections so I am not overwhelmed on the day and actually enjoy the moment. I do as much as I can on the day before and the morning of, so I am not spinning out of control before my guests arrive.”

Sectioning your tasks into “food, beverage, look, and vibe” will ensure you can stay calm and on-task.

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