Cooking Experiences

Christmas 2015: An Aldi bought, home-cooked Christmas dinner

Every year, Charlotte and I (plus our little one as of this year!) have a fake ‘Christmas dinner’ to celebrate the festive season before driving down south for the real festivities with our family.

This year, with a nod to the fact that over the last 12 months we have found ourselves doing most of our weekly shops at Aldi, we decided to buy our fake Christmas dinner from the German supermarket giant in order to test their advert, which states that this year they are selling Christmas fans a ‘few of our favourite things’!

From the outset, I can declare that this isn’t a sponsored post; we bought and paid for our items ourselves and all opinions are genuine!

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015 – ready for cooking

With regards to the shopping experience, anyone who has been to Aldi will know that there is no luxury to the shopping process here. However, the fact that our sprouts, potatoes, and parsnips came to a total cost of just over £1 tells you that there is serious value to be had here!

We also chose to go for some pigs in blankets, specially selected stuffing parcels wrapped in bacon, pre-made poultry gravy, and some goose fat for the potatoes. We also purchased the ingredients needed to make our homemade Yorkshire puddings (for us, an essential part of Christmas!).

In total, this cost less than £25, and that’s including the three game roast that we had previously bought pretty much as soon as it was in store. This proves that for around £12.50 a head you can have a pretty full-on Christmas meal for two of you!

Cooking instructions were fairly clear and once we had practiced how we were going to be filling the oven in terms of all the dishes and roasting tins, and had drawn up a nice, to the minute timetable of cooking times and temperatures, we were able to get cracking with the prep!

Although the Maris Piper potatoes were nice and easy to work with (as were the parsnips), the sprouts required a bit more TLC; they needed a thorough wash before having the outer layers removed and the traditional X put in the base.

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015

Discarded sprout leaves

Once all our prep was done, we started to pre-heat the oven ready for our three game roast!

The three game bird roast doesn’t look especially pretty. In fact, it looked a little like what I imagine a turducken would have looked like in Tudor times!

Covered in bacon rashers and placed in a sensibly sized roasting tin that you can pop straight in the oven, it’s easy to roast this impressive Christmas day bird. It took two and a half hours to cook (the tin foil lid is taken off the bird for the last half hour) and the result was surprisingly tasty.

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015

The bird after roasting

In my opinion, the guinea fowl, grouse and pheasant elements are clearly easy to differentiate (although not easy to carve!) and the stuffing keeps everything nice and moist. We shared the bird between two of us and it could have easily fed four and at a push the six it claims on the carton.

Without giving a full breakdown, our honey roasted parsnips were a delight and the roasties were a real crispy triumph. The gravy had a decent flavour to it, although it was not a showstopper, and the pigs in blankets cooked through well and certainly packed enough of a flavour punch to make them a hit with us. The stuffing was nice although it could have had a little more flavour to it.

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015

Our finished dinner (before the gravy was poured on!)

Our homemade Yorkshire puddings were exceptional (thanks Delia!) and certainly went well with the gravy.

Overall, the meal was, for us, a huge success! Whilst you can spend an absolute fortune at the likes of Waitrose and M and S, or can go on a shoestring budget to the likes of Asda, Aldi certainly seem to deliver Waitrose-level food (or pretty damn close to it) at a lower price point than even Asda would offer. Aldi is perfect for families, people looking to cheat a little bit, and those who want to get decent food at a decent price.

Aldi Christmas dinner 2015

Places laid and ready to eat!

Categories: Cooking Experiences

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