Living with your friends is one of the best things about being at university – they become the people you’re closest to and who you spend the most time with. At least we hope that’s that case for you! With that being said, as we edge closer to Christmas, many people like to plan a ‘Friendsmas’ dinner: big lovely pre-Christmas dinner with friends and flatmates to celebrate the holiday season before everyone goes their separate ways. And here’s what you need to have on your shopping list…
Meat and/or meat alternative
The main event tends to be the meat or your chosen meat alternative – typically this would be turkey around Christmas, but it’s worth shopping around to see what the cheapest option is. Chicken is just as nice!
A Friendsmas dinner isn’t complete without all the veggies; we’ve popped a list below of some of the most popular Christmas vegetables, but you don’t need to buy them all. Maybe pick a top 3 based on everybody’s preferences…
For an extra touch, drizzle parsnips with honey and roast them or fry your sprouts with pancetta. Fancy!
Technically a vegetable, yes, but potatoes are almost a standalone addition to a Friendsmas or student Christmas dinner. Around this time of year, you’ll normally find potatoes made in two ways: roasted and mashed. A lot of people go for both! You can cheat by buying frozen roast potatoes and microwaveable mash, which are just as tasty as the homemade version and sometimes work out cheaper – plus it’s often easier if there’s limited space in the kitchen or you’re trying to make a lot of things at once.
The added extras
There’s the basics down: meat, potatoes, and veg. But you can’t forget all the Christmassy extras that make the dinner complete: Yorkshire puddings, of course, and plenty of gravy! Pugs in blankets are a favourite at this time of year, too. Depending on what meat you choose, you might also want a particular sauce; cranberry goes best with turkey, but if you opt for lamb then consider getting a jar of mint sauce.
Ensure you also have any herbs, spices and seasonings in the cupboard to add extra flavour to this lovely Friendsmas dinner!
And of course, we can’t let you miss out on the tasty things that come after dinner. Whether it’s Christmas pudding, After Eight Mints, a delicious chocolate yule log or a fancy cheese board, find out what everybody wants and again make a decision that suits the whole group. Don’t forget the Christmas crackers, too…
When it comes to planning a friends Christmas dinner with your university flatmates, be sure to take everyone’s dietary needs into consideration – and you’ll need to split the cooking and the washing up, too, to make it fair. It’s time to celebrate the festive season!