The Christmas dinner party is a fine tradition upheld and perfected over several years by families. Traditions are passed down through generations, families are reconnected and there is a festive air about the place.
If you are a bit of a cynic or just bored of the regular stuff every year, and want to add a bit of spice to Christmas dinner, why not add in a special theme? Christmas themed parties seem to be the trend in the recent years with the younger generation trying to assert their independence and still stay on top of tradition.
If you have had a chance to watch the recent delicious television show called Top Chef: Just Desserts and have a bit of a sweet tooth, try hosting a 'Just Desserts' themed party. Skip the savory course and throw a spread of generic desserts such as cake, souffle, pie together with international favorites like churros, baklava and Indian burfi. Remember to keep aside some antacid for after the meal.
Christmas Movie Marathon
The best time to rent cheesy Christmas movies and watch them continuously while munching on leftover fruitcake and candy canes is during...Christmas. Get The Grinch for some comedy, A Christmas Carol for some drama, Joyeux Noel for a serious foreign film element and Tim Burton's classic - A Nightmare Before Christmas for some scares. Keep the treats and wine flowing all night to make it truly memorable.
Christmas Open House
This one is for the brave host who is quick, efficient and on top of things. Having an open house is tricky because it requires entertaining almost all day while guests trickle in at different times. An open house means having a constant supply of food and drinks during the stated times on your invitation, various forms of entertainment for guests ranging from Christmas games or even something as basic as keeping up the momentum of the party through good conversation and an upbeat mood. Open houses are a great way to reconnect with friends and family and brings plenty of goodwill.
This is my personal favorite themed party. High Society means getting out your best China, dressing up to the nines and having a full sit down dinner with your friends. Try exotic meats (not monkey or giraffe) like kangaroo, perhaps a recipe or two borrowed from Thomas Keller's cookbook and fine wine to last the evening. Remember to set a dress code for this one and to not overspend.
Have your camera ready for the party, whichever theme you choose. Send out invitations well in advance with a set RSVP date and accurate timings all while keeping an estimate of the number of guests you can handle. If you cannot cook for everyone, the best idea is to cater. Party on!
I have been having Christmas dinner parties with my friends for years and something fun we do each year is kind of like a Kris Kringle... Everyone brings a gift around $15-$20 (but you can nominate any value you like that suits the group you're inviting over). Then everyone's name goes into a hat and you get the gift brought by whoever's name you pull out of the hat. It's a simple way to organise Kris Kringle and everyone gets to go home with something. Lot's of fun.
By Ashleigh - senior reviewer Monday, 29th of November @ 12:49 am
That's a great idea, and is definitely good for those on a tight budget.
I went to a party with a secret santa theme once. So before the party each of us had to pick from a box containing everyone's name, and we had to bring a present for the person picked.
By Ketki - senior reviewer Monday, 29th of November @ 10:27 pm