‘Obscene’: Nigella Lawson recommends skipping ‘indulgent’ part of Christmas dinner

Serving this course is ‘madness’, she says

Kate Ng
Saturday 24 December 2022 14:50 GMT
Nigella Lawson pronounces 'microwave' strangely on Cook, Eat, Repeat

Nigella Lawson has said it is “madness” to serve starters with Christmas dinner because of what a feast the main meal is.

The beloved TV chef said that eating too much during the festive occasion can leave people a “bloated wreck” instead of happily full and warm.

In a new interview with The News Agents podcast, released on Thursday (22 December), Lawson, 62, told hosts Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel that eating too much food at Christmas has become an “obscene overindulgence”.

“I don’t know why people do starters for Christmas lunch. I never have – that seems a madness,” she said.

“But I also think there is a way in which for so many people it does become a sort of obscene overindulgence. So people are not eating because it is pleasurable; they’re eating because, somehow, people feel it is [pleasurable] when they should be eating non-stop.”

The Cook, Eat, Repeat author added that some people “can go too far” when making the most of the special occasion. “You want to feel full up and grateful that you feel full up, but you don’t want to be a bloated wreck.”

Elsewhere in the podcast, Lawson said she was not “interested” in “buying people who don’t need things” any Christmas presents this year.

“You can give them a card to say I’ve donated in your name in lieu of a Christmas present, so you can feel like you’re doing something,” she suggested. “You want to celebrate being with your family in ways we haven’t been able to, but you don’t want it to tip into the obscene.”

Lawson, who recently partnered with Ocado to release budget-friendly recipes in the face of the cost of living crisis, said in 2020 that she would not cook a Christmas turkey for the first time ever.

She told the BBC Newscast podcast that she was departing from tradition and cooking pork instead, referencing lockdown restrictions that were in place at the time as a reason for the change.

“It’s not going to be a normal family Christmas,” she said. “Therefore, I think I will feel less sad doing something that is just a lovely lunch, that takes in a few Christmas traditions from elsewhere that interest me, but [do] not make me feel what’s missing.”

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in