A Simple French Style Christmas – a look at what is involved.
Image : Garden Trading
After the year we’ve all had, a simple, pared back Christmas will be a welcome change for many of us this year. It’s been an emotionally exhausting time with one thing or another hasn’t it? So, why not make it an easy affair, take it easy on yourself, consciously take time to enjoy each moment and stay calm at Christmas .
A simple, French style Christmas might make a lovely change, focussing on family and living in the moment.
Here’s a few tips on creating a simple, French style Christmas from Katie Anderson at Love French Style Blog.
A Simple French Style Christmas
The simple, French Christmas brings in the season’s colours and scents to the home and table, enjoying nature’s gifts and simply taking the time. With natural décor and European flavours, a little je ne sais quoi from across the Channel will not only bring your Christmas table to life but the chance to try some new flavours this year too. From classic chocolate desserts to French style party nibbles, read on for some French style Christmas inspiration…
French Style Christmas Flowers
Image : Heavenly Homes and Gardens
The French Art de Table is even more popular at Christmas time than ever. There’s something so nice about designing a simple Christmas with natural table decorations that can be added to the garden compost in the new year rather than going out with the bins. Getting the table set the evening before is so satisfying if you are able to do so but, if not this simple table style is very quick and easy to put in place.
The French look is pretty and natural so focus on creating ambiance with scent and texture. These added touches create an element of luxury in an otherwise simple scene. Using fresh foliage like Eucalyptus and berries or roses, you can create a stunning centre piece for the Christmas table with added scent for a fraction of the cost of a shop bought one.
Styling foliage in a large glass jar on the entrance hall sideboard looks so welcoming and stays looking great once dried too. You can also add a few spritzes of homemade room fragrance to the bouquet -simply add a few drops of pine essential oil with a couple of drops of orange oil to a spray bottle with water and spritz away to be transported to a winter wonderland.
A French Style Christmas Table Decoration
Image : Ginger Ray
Using floristry wire, weave branches of foliage, like eucalyptus or foraged finds and layer onto the hoop, adding the roses and berries as the final flourish. Once the table is set with a simple white tablecloth place the wreath in the middle of the table and weave in fairy lights to create a stunning focal point on the table with a magical glow.
At each place setting, why not place a single stem of eucalyptus on each napkin and tie in place with a ribbon and even a personalised parcel tag for a lovely rustic French look with plenty of style.
French Style Christmas Treats
Image : Shop Kasanova
There’s nothing quite like that lovely warm, cinnamon scent that you get wafting through the Christmas markets in Europe is there? For some delicious French style Christmas treats you could try this French Christmas Madeleine recipe. French style treats are so easy to make and Madeleine cakes are a real classic made using a simple sponge mix but with added fruits and spice for a more seasonal flavour.
You could also try making French style chocolate truffles or cinnamon biscuits for after dinner with an aromatic coffee. These treats are great on a naturally styled Christmas tree too, provided they’re not within reach of a greedy Labrador!
Simple Christmas Aperitif Ideas
Image : Garden Trading
The elusive aperitif in France might go on for hours on end for the French but you can keep yours short and sweet with some delicious nibbles to toast in the big day. Try serving up some warmed blini with mushroom pâté and caramelised onions or goats cheese with pickled beetroot on mini toasts. Another French style nibble are squares of cheese and onion quiche or smoked salmon blended with cream cheese served on teaspoons – these delicious snacks will really get your party off to a bang.
A popular French style drink at Christmas time is a Kir Royale cocktail which is simply a dash of blackcurrant, peach or blackberry liqueur topped up with sparkling wine or champagne.
Easy Vegetarian French Style Christmas Food
The French Christmas table is bursting with seasonal flavour and very often the vegetables are the real stars of the show. In the run up to Christmas, a vegetarian Tartiflette with a crisp salad is a great family dish to enjoy and costs pennies to make.
Why not also try a baked Camembert with honey and thyme the night before Christmas, not only is this a really convivial way to enjoy the start of the evening together but it’s delicious served with crusty baguette and crudité to dip in so is kind of healthy too! Kids also adore pan fried mushrooms in butter with plenty of black pepper on brioche toast or mini muffins made with gooey cheese.
French Style Christmas Dessert Ideas
Image : Pro Cook
Chocolate is big on the French style Christmas menu and what better dessert to have in the line up than a delicious chocolate fondant? The runny, hot chocolate in the centre of the cakes makes them feel really luxurious but they are inexpensive to make and a great choice for a larger family. To make these extra festive why not sprinkle with icing sugar before serving and add a sprig of redcurrants for some festive cheer.
Did you know that in France, champagne is usually served with the dessert, which always comes after the cheese course?
Wherever you are going to be celebrating and whoever you’re with, hopefully these simple Christmas ideas will give you some quick and easy ways to bring something new to the table for all the family this year.
A Simple French Style Christmas is a guest post