Its a lot of fuss, but that one day makes it all worthwhile
The first female chef to take part in the BBC’S Great British Menu, Jacqueline O’ Donnell, goes all out with her Christmas decor...
On Christmas Eve my children and I make biscuits for Santa and sprinkle reindeer food on the lawn. Then there will be a rattle at the door, or we will hear a firework go off, and it means that Santa has left a special Christmas Eve present. It’s normally a hot chocolate on a stick, new pyjamas and a Christmas movie. On Christmas morning we know Santa has been because there’s snowy footprints in the hearth. One year we got up and the dogs had licked up all the ‘snow’, so it’s a special kind of snow now that isn’t quite so tasty for dogs! I go for traditional Christmas decorations and I get a real tree. And I love to forage in the garden for pinecones and branches to make a mantle piece decoration.
On Christmas Day the kids open their stockings, we all go down to see what Santa has left and we go for a big walk together. I cook the Christmas dinner obviously – some people find it stressful but it shouldn’t be, I really enjoy it and given I’m used to cooking for a full restaurant (The Sisters in Glasgow) I don’t find it stressful at all. This year we will have goose and for dessert a winter pavlova, chocolate torte and clootie dumpling. I do think it’s a lot of fuss for one day. There’s so much running around and stress but it’s such a magical time, that one day makes it all worthwhile!
Trousers, £69, Jacket, £130, Shoes, £95, Ted Baker, Cami, £59, Brooch, £12, Bangles, £16, each all at John Lewis.