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Here’s something uniquely magical about a Christmas wedding. Sparkling snow evoked in crystal and lace, rich ribbons of red and gold, or a peaceful woodland scene – these are all fitting backdrops for your special day.

A Christmas wedding is also a marvellous opportunity for a truly decadent wedding meal. After all, the season is associated with abundance and everyone is in the mood for some indulgent treats. Depending on your theme, tastes and budget, there are countless options for creating a memorable winter wedding feast. Read on for suggestions for planning a Christmas-themed wedding menu that will surely be one of the highlights of the day…

Canapés and Starters

Help your guests enter into the Christmas spirit on arrival by offering glasses of bubbly complete with pomegranate seeds or a dash of blood orange juice for a festive twist. Or, if it’s a particularly chilly day, go for mulled wine and mini mince pies to help everyone warm up for the party.

Winter’s colder temperatures call for heartier fare, so don’t be afraid to offer something a bit more substantial than you would for a summer wedding. Ideally you want dishes that feel warm and comforting without completely filling you up before the main event, so aim for daintier versions of your favourite comfort foods. Try mini meatballs on a stick; tiny pots of mac and cheese; or even shot glasses filled with a taster of soup.

Soup also makes a seasonally appropriate starter – think rich and creamy recipes with butternut squash, chestnut or sweet potato. Or consider a colourful salad made of deep greens mixed with goat’s cheese, walnuts, dried cranberries, pomegranate seeds or even slices of satsuma for a healthy festive treat.

Hearty mains

The main course is another chance to offer a substantial dish in keeping with the season. One of the most popular dishes for a winter wedding is still fillet mignon, and while this is certainly a crowd pleaser, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Seasonal favourites such as venison, pheasant, baked salmon or even turkey make a welcome change from the norm and will be appreciated by many guests. At a more casual affair, why not expand your options even further and go for a delicious pot pie or stew?

For vegetarian guests, try a rich savoury torte made with eggs, cheese and layers of seasonal vegetables, or a tasty nut roast as a carvery option. Side dishes can include an assortment of colourful root vegetables – think roast or mashed parsnips, carrots, squash or sweet potato, or serve them as colourful chips for a more casual feel – as well as sprouts, cranberry jelly and other Christmas staples. For a unique spin, try dressing up ordinary potatoes with cheese or wasabi, or replace them entirely with a creamy risotto.

To keep the atmosphere relaxed and evoke the feeling of a family Christmas get-together, consider letting everyone serve themselves from communal dishes in the centre of the table or from chafing dishes on a sideboard. Alternately, you can tap into the ongoing trend for small dishes by serving up a multiple-course tasting menu so guests can sample an assortment of festive treats. Bear in mind that this option will take longer to serve, so if you’re in a hurry to move on to the dancing and reception, this might not be ideal.

Desserts

The dessert course is when the decadent spirit of Christmas really comes into its own. Wedding cakes look fabulous adorned with red ribbon or sparkling with silver and gold – consider a sumptuous red velvet cake, rich chocolate or traditional fruitcake for a taste of the season.

If you’re having a dessert in addition to the cake, don’t be afraid to go a bit overboard. Serve a flight of three mini-desserts on a slider –crème brûlée, chocolate mousse or berry cheesecake are all good choices -  or create an entire spread of white-coloured sweets, biscuits and cake, as suggested by wedding blog The Knot. The latter evokes a snowy wonderland of sweets, which is sure to stir childlike delight even in the most serious of guests.

For those who prefer savoury nibbles to sweet ( or as a late-night snack option for the reception), why not lay out a Christmas smorgasbord of cheese, crackers, oatcakes, nuts and grapes – this will add to the feeling of plenty, and provide plenty of fuel for dancing into the small hours. And before your guests head off home, warm them up for the journey with cups of hot chocolate or spiced cider – a dash of Bailey’s or other sweet liqueur for the adults lends an even more indulgent feel.

Have you held or attended a Christmas wedding? What was on the menu?


Comments

Lockhart Catering on 23 December 2013 4:23 AM

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