The Christmas season is upon us and between parties, gift shopping and trying to meet work deadlines before the holidays; it can leave you with little time to prepare your evening meal. This might not be high on your list of things to do at this busy time of year, but it’s actually very important. Eating healthy food will keep you warm and energised to get through the busy days – we like hearty food like Italian food, Chinese food and a good roast.

Stay healthy

As the cold weather draws in and the annual winter bugs go round it’s important to eat healthily to boost your immune system. Schools are breeding grounds for colds and flu so make sure the kids have a filling evening meal.

There’s nothing worse than getting to Christmas time, finally having time to relax, and then being sick and not being able to enjoy yourself. Make sure you keep yourself healthy by eating sensibly and taking a break for a little “me time” when you get a spare thirty minutes or so.

It’s party time

Christmas parties can be great fun, and it’s easy to get in the moment when the alcohol starts going round. If you want to avoid too much embarrassment or a sore head in the morning, it’s vital that you line your stomach with a hearty meal beforehand. Carbohydrates like pasta or rice (there are loads of recipes available online from websites like help you to fill up without feeling like a stuffed turkey and sluggish.

Most parties at this time of year start early and don’t leave you with much time to get ready or time to eat a proper meal. A good idea is to take an extra-large packed lunch to work and have a second lunch an hour or two before the party. Something like a per uno smoked bacon with Italian tomato and olives is great for building your immune system and preparing your body for an evening of cocktails or mulled wine.

Make your own nibbles

It’s easy to agree to throw a party and suddenly find the day is approaching and you have much less time to prepare than expected.

With tidying the house, sorting the kids out, and getting your other half to sort out the drinks…and spruce yourself up there might not be much time to sort out any food. It’s tempting to buy ready made nibbles from the supermarket, but these can be pricey and sometimes disappointingly bland.

This is why making your own party nibbles doesn’t have to take a lot of time or cost a fortune. In less than three minutes you can make Pesto & Goat’s Cheese Canapés. Watch MasterChef winner Dhruv Baker’s Sacla’ video recipes on YouTube – he makes this look incredibly simple; but you really don’t need to be a master chef to try it.

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