The Perfect Christmas Dinner

Because you just can't fail with these recipes

There's nothing wrong with having turkey again after Thanksgiving, but a Christmas goose, ham, or roast beef are also great alternatives.

The relatives will be descending on the house any day now, and there's still last-minute Christmas shopping to be done. The lights still need to go up, there's no tree, the house is still a mess, and it's a pretty desperate situation. And then there are the presents to wrap and the cards to write. The pressure is mounting, and there's clearly little to no time left to plan out an elaborate Christmas dinner. So we've put together a complete Christmas dinner from start to finish that will hopefully take some of the guesswork out of planning one of the most important get-togethers of the year.

Obviously, we're not expecting that you'll cook all of these (roast turkey, chicken, beef, and pork all on one table would probably lead your loved ones to believe you really have gone off the deep end), but rather, pick one or two recipes from each category which appeal to you. Also, while the title of the story imparts certain expectations (namely, that of perfection), we all know that it's impossible to be perfect — but we did try to find all the "perfect" recipes we could.

And, if everything that can possibly go wrong does go wrong — the roast burns, the tree catches on fire, and someone in their infinite wisdom tells the kids about Santa — then there's always plan B: Do as Ralphie's family did in A Christmas Story, admit defeat, and go to a Chinese restaurant to order roast duck.

Merry Christmas!


The Centerpiece

Jonathan Waxman's Perfect Turkey

How does that saying go? "Winner, winner, chicken dinner"? That's because they've never had this turkey before...

Click here to see How to Make the Perfect Roast Turkey.



Perfect Brisket

One brisket should be all you need to get the job done. Just pay attention to these steps and you’ll have the one the way you want it, too...







Michael Ruhlman's Perfect Roasted Chicken

There are three finesse points to a perfect roasted chicken. They concern seasoning, oven temperature, and the maintenance of a juicy breast and fully cooked thighs...







"The Best" Pork Roast


There are few things which please dinner guests more than seeing a beautifully cooked roast emerge from the kitchen, and Mario Batali’s Tuscan-style pork roast will not disappoint...