Things you only know if you’re in charge of cooking on Christmas Day

Christmas Day is arguably the biggest event of the year when it comes to food. You can get away with a few mince pies and sausage rolls on Christmas Eve, and Boxing Day is pure, glorious leftovers, but December 25? It’s an absolute kitchen mission.

If you’re charged with taking care of lunch, we’re guessing you’ll be able to relate to a few of these thoughts and feelings…

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If anyone comes in your kitchen the morning of Christmas Day, you will be handing them a knife, a chopping board and three bags of parsnips.

Sure, Yorkshire puddings are not traditional at Christmas – you’re having turkey, not beef after all – but there will be complaints if there aren’t any. And you still always forget them and have to stick some Aunt Bessie’s in the oven while everyone starts on the crackers.

No one needs a starter if you make sure every family member ate a whole Chocolate Orange for breakfast.

Creeping downstairs at 5am to stick the turkey in the oven is actually a strangely festive tradition…

Checking the turkey is cooked through but not bone dry several hours later is far less restive – and if anyone wanders in suggesting you should have stuffed more butter between the skin and the breast a la Nigella, you will lose it.

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Your oven isn’t big enough. It never, ever is.

Everyone has a suggestion on how to make Brussels edible. Boiling is out. Crossing the bottoms is out. You’ll be doing ’em your way (roasted, with tonnes of salt), and every plate will get at least five. No complaints.

You’ve been buying jars of goose fat on every supermarket trip since the beginning of October, but you’re still anxious your roast potatoes won’t be crispy enough to shatter properly when you bite into them.

The person who wants mashed potatoes as well as roasted will not be invited next year.

Why do we only make proper bread sauce at Christmas?! You feel so out of practice.

Stuffing is crucial – but shop-bought balls or homemade with sausage meat? You can never decide, so always plump for both.

If you are not regularly supplied with booze and Quality Street during the cooking process, your family will pay.

No matter how hard you try, there will never, ever be enough gravy.

You’ve done all the hard work, so someone else can set the Christmas pudding on fire.

- Press Association

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