The uncomplicated holiday menu by Geneviève O’Gleman

The uncomplicated holiday menu by Geneviève O’Gleman

My holiday menu and table

For Christmas, I suggest serving a traditional meal, but I promise—you won’t be stuck cooking for three days straight!

I enjoy classic holiday recipes, but hosting the traditional way can be exhausting! Most traditional meals take forever to make, and showing up tired on the night of the party is no fun!

I’ve created recipes for you that are simple, festive, delicious, and traditional. However, I’ve adopted a few shortcuts so you still have time to actually enjoy the holidays. You’ll spend less time in the kitchen, and more time with family and friends. Here’s to an uncomplicated holiday menu!

Inspiration for cocktails and recipes

Mouse au chocolat forêt-noire by Geneviève O'Gleman (French only)

Nutra vin chaud (French only)

5 tips for a simple Christmas

  • Plan several weeks ahead

    JI always plan my menu several weeks before Christmas and buy all my non-perishables in advance, leaving me with less to do the day of. Seeing as grocery stores are always super busy on Christmas Eve, I only pop in to buy the fresh ingredients still on my list. Because most of my ingredients have already been bought, I’m back home in no time!

  • Stock up early

    Same thing for wine: I sample them several weeks in advance. Once I’ve decided on the ones I like best, I go back to the store and stock up. Another thing to cross off my list!

  • Set the table the night before

    I’ve gotten into the habit of setting the table the night before. It gives me plenty of time to make adjustments if need be. I like adding a few tree branches, candles, and tree ornaments—it’s a really inexpensive way of creating a magical ambience. I always choose one accent colour and one neutral colour for uniformity.

  • Clear your workspace

    I like to put together a small water bar, which I place in the room where my guests hang out. It makes room in the kitchen and means guests can serve themselves whenever they get thirsty. I make sure to offer still and sparkling water, and lay out a selection of garnishes, such as citrus wedges, fresh herbs, and slices of cucumbers. It’s always a success and it curbs everyone’s alcohol intake!

  • Delegate certain tasks

    On the day of the party, I let people help me! Someone always asks and we almost always automatically decline. This year, say yes! Don’t carry the burden all by yourself—you too deserve to partake in the celebrations!