Christmas Dinner for One 2016

Christmas Dinner One

This was my Christmas Dinner for one.  The beauty of it is you make it “YOUR” Christmas. It’s nobody else’s – and you can choose what to eat… although there are constraints with volume, so you might find yourself cutting back a little just because it’s not practical to cook everything you’d like included 🙂

My Christmas Dinner for One was, of course, a Cheats Christmas Dinner. I’ve used only a slow cooker, the microwave and a toaster oven. I used the slow cooker to cook a turkey breast joint, which serves four – I cooked this the day before, then cooled and wrapped it and put it in the fridge. On Christmas Day I just had to microwave this (although I did pop it into the toaster oven to brown a little).

My Christmas Dinner for one this year included:

  • Turkey breast and cocktail sausages.
  • Roast potatoes, roast parsnips, chestnut stuffing, Yorkshire pudding, gravy.
  • Brussels sprouts, mashed swede, mashed potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, peas.

Lessons Learnt for Next Year:
Every time you cook, you’ll change your mind about “next time…” – for me, next year I’ll not cook cauliflower or peas.  You can see from the photo above that I over-catered! That’s enough food for two meals.

Instead, I’ll probably have more stuffing and more Yorkshire pudding. I’ll also cook the turkey breast roast on the day; this year I wanted to make sure that it was cooked thoroughly and needed to note down the timings, but next year I’ll know how long it takes to cook a turkey breast roast in the slow cooker!

I then plated it up, I’d even bought a new plate specially for Christmas dinner as I didn’t want to eat from my usual bowl, nor from my stripey large/round plates.

Christmas Dinner One

A Food Cheats Christmas Dinner!

How to Cook This Christmas Dinner for One

I used simple food cheats to create a lot of this Christmas dinner.  I started off with the best of intentions about cooking from scratch, but as the day got closer I kept changing my mind.  But this is how I put this dinner together in the end this year:

  • Turkey – cooked in a slow cooker.  I bought a frozen turkey roast joint. I used the juices from that as the basis for the gravy.
  • Cocktail sausages: I don’t really like bacon, so didn’t want pigs in blankets, but I do like the sausage part.  I bought some ready cooked cocktail sausages, which I microwaved hot (1-2 minutes)
  • Chestnut Stuffing: I had a packet of stuffing mix in the cupboard.  I added more chestnuts to it from a vacuum pack of chestnuts.  Once mixed and left to stand, I microwaved this for a couple of minutes, then I popped it into a small foil tray and crisped the top by baking it in the toaster oven for 20 minutes – this was just because it was Christmas Lunch and I LOVE a crispy top on stuffing, it’s OK to eat it without this bit, but today I just “wanted the stuffing crispy on top”
  • Roast potatoes: I used frozen roast potatoes, which I microwaved to defrost, then put into the toaster oven for 20 minutes.
  • Roast parsnips: I microwaved the parsnips from fresh parsnips, this took 5 minutes.  I then oiled the parsnips and roasted them in the toaster oven for 20 minutes.
  • Yorkshire pudding: I bought a packet of frozen Yorkshire puddings in the end.  I had intended to make my own, but decided not to at the last minute. I bought the larger sized Yorkshire puddings, not the small ones.  I think next year I’ll just make a Yorkshire pudding… a bigger one 🙂
  • Brussels sprouts: These were frozen brussels sprouts, which I steamed in the microwave for 5 minutes. Next year I’ll buy fresh sprouts.
  • Cauliflower: This was frozen cauliflower and was steamed in the microwave alongside the Brussels sprouts.  Next year I won’t bother with cauliflower, or I’ll make a cauliflower cheese – I’ll decide on the morning.
  • Carrots: These I peeled with a peeler, then the carrots were steamed in the microwave for 5 minutes. I then sliced them into rounds and strips.
  • Mashed potato: I steamed the potatoes in the microwave, then mashed them.  I actually made this the day before so it was one less job to do on the day!
  • Mashed swede: I used the “Singing Swede” method for this.  20 minutes in the microwave then the swede was scooped out.  I made this the day before, then, on the day, I microwaved the mashed swede with some butter to serve.
  • Gravy: I used some of the turkey cooking juices, mixed with gravy granules.  The gravy’s dark as I just used regular gravy granules and didn’t bother to get chicken or vegetable gravy granules in (next year I will bother though as I’d prefer a lighter looking gravy on my Xmas dinner!)

Overall, I can make it easier/quicker next year … but it was really tasty.  I’ll probably cook the roast potatoes and roast parsnips longer, so they brown a little more, too.  For me, the main parts of the dinner are turkey, Yorkshire pudding, stuffing and Brussels sprouts, which is where I put my main efforts.

Happy Christmas!  And if you’re facing a Christmas dinner for one, then embrace it and make it “yours”.  This is a better end result than just picking up a microwave meal for one – and doesn’t take much extra effort and, after all, what else are you doing that day??