Christmas can be a really expensive time of year, but by planning ahead you could save hundreds of pounds off this year's festive spend. If like many of us you are planning on entertaining this festive season, then the best way is to work out who is visiting and when, this will enable you to calculate how much you will need to prepare.
* Write a clear list, and check it twice.
* Work out who will be coming and when.
* Check your cupboards, fridge and freezer before shopping.
If you are making any stews and soups, these could be easily frozen if you double up the quantity, defrosted and served to your guests, saving you time and the cost of having to cook twice. In continental countries guests often bring a dish or a plate of something to add to the meal, work out what you would like people to make and work this into your menu plan.
Watch out for cheap deals on meat in supermarkets, or in the best before section, you can easily freeze these until they are needed.
Large stews such as chilli con carne, coq au vin and beef stews are a cost effective way of cooking for a large group, added to some rice or baked potato, they are not only tasty but filling too.
The BBC has some great budget recipes http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/budget
Use up your left over's; these can be stored in your fridge for up to two days or put into your freezer.
Source:Hate Waste/Love Food