Jamie Oliver’s recipes for your best family Christmas

He's been publishing cookbooks for 17 years, so it's about time the chef gathered all his festive favourites

 

In his latest book, Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook, the chef, husband and father of five admits right away that you can’t create a perfect Christmas. Things don’t always go to plan, he acknowledges, but he says a good deal of planning and a great deal of laughter will ensure everything turns out alright.

While Oliver can’t guarantee giggles – that’s up to you and yours – he does offer some excellent tips on making the day, and the season, as hassle-free as possible. Seventeen years worth of recipes have gone into the book. And with sections on all the essentials, from starters to sauces, your main course to some show-stopping desserts (and an entire chapter on spuds, a man after our own heart) the book follows the tried and tested holiday cookbook formula. But he also breaks out with great tips on winter drinks, edible gifts – there’s a great recipe for piccalilli we’ll be trying – some seasonal salads for when it all gets a bit much, and a really useful guide to roasting meat, broken down into meat, cut, cooking time and other handy information. Vegetarians and vegans are also taken care of, with 20 pages of substantial, interesting alternatives to the traditional turkey.

There’s nutritional information for each recipe so you can keep track of what you’re eating over the festive season, although, you’re free to ignore it, as we plan to. Instead we’re going to try our hand at making the homemade crackers, with a step-by-step guide on page 379.

Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook by Jamie Oliver is published by Penguin Random House, £26.

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