Delia Smith serves up a Christmas lunch for less than a fiver each!

In times of austerity, any money saving tips come in very handy, and especially at Christmas. The festive season is the time of year when budgeting and looking after the pennies goes out of the window however, but with many of us simply not having the money we want to spend on our loved ones, where can you cut corners? Well, food is one area where you can glam up an old bit of meat, or home cook instead of buying shop bought, and our favorite celebrity chef, Delia Smith has been researching costs and comprising recipes and come up with a Christmas lunch that costs £4.79 a head! It’s quite unbelievable when you think that a typical Sunday roast costs around this amount so how has she done it?

Everything is home cooked, so if you are thinking of popping out and buying it all ready made you’re in for a shock. The main dish of roast turkey has been replaced by turkey drumsticks so you won’t have the huge entrance making bird at the table, but you will have the taste of turkey in a super braised sauce. You get a simple starter of smoked salmon and warm, homemade blinis, and vegetables for the main dish are reserved to brussels and parsnips, but the whole meal has a festive look about it and we think that for the price, it is incredible value, without skimping on the traditional flavours and look. So what does the menu look like then for this superb Christmas Day lunch?

Christmas menu for six people

Starter (or breakfast)

Warm potato blinis with smoked salmon, crème fraîche and dill


Braised turkey drumsticks with port and chestnuts, served with pork, sage and onion stuffing, bacon rolls and cranberry sauce. Roast potatoes, parsnips and brussels sprouts


Christmas pudding with brandy sauce

Delia says: “So Britain is in a crisis, and Christmas is only 24 days away. People are struggling, so it’s time, I’m thinking, to set about doing something. So I and my team have engaged in some intricate research. We’ve shopped, calculated, tested and cooked. The results: holy wow! Even we can hardly believe it. I’ve always known cooking at home saves a load of money, but it has blown us away how this really kicks in at Christmas.”

And what’s more, all the recipes are available from this link at The Guardian website, and Delia very generously gave her fee for the article to Crisis At Christmas, which is a national charity for single homeless people. So if you are struggling this year and wondering how you are going to provide a delicious lunch for your family, check out the full article and on Christmas Day have a toast to the super chef – Miss Smith!

Source: The Guardian

Food styling: Claire Ptak. Photographs: Colin Campbell for the Guardian

All recipes © Delia Smith 2012. Recipes adapted from Delia’s Happy Christmas (Ebury Press, 2009).

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