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No fuss Mother’s Day

Ever wondered how to make Mother’s Day Lunch as hassle free as possible? With two, and often three generations, of mothers and children, the thought of going out can be more stressful than staying in. Not only is it an expensive option for a large gathering, but also an arduous one trying to keep an eye on the children and keeping everyone happy and behaved!

So, with a more relaxed and hassle free approach in mind, where all generations can be comfortable in their own familiar environment, why not try hosting a Mother’s Day Lunch? It doesn’t have to be difficult, or particularly time consuming and what better occasion that to rope in some help from your family – after all, it is your day too!

So, check out some top tips from MOLLY MAID, the house cleaning professionals, on how to make Mother’s Day a stress-free yet memorable occasion.

Saturday:

  • Finalise menu and buy last minute ingredients. See our suggested simple menu below. The starter and main course can be made in advance too with dessert taking not more than 15minutes with no cooking involved, but pretty as a picture!
  • Buy or pick a big bunch of daffodils to decorate the lunch table. There is nothing more cheerful than seeing a bright bunch of daffodils on the table.
  • Lay the table the night before ensuring that children and pets are kept away from the dining table!
  •  Put drinks and wine in the fridge to chill.

 

Mother’s Day morning:

  • Open cards and enjoy a breakfast made for you (hopefully!).
  • Make up the dessert if using the tartlets recipe.
  • Pre-heat oven for Chicken Gratin & bake for 40 mins if made in advance and put in the oven.
  • Remove the pate from fridge 15 minutes before sitting down to eat & make toast (the children under supervision can even do this bit)
  • Don’t forget to put your vegetables or greens on!
  • Serve and sit down and allow others to do the running around for the rest of the day!

 

Mother’s Day afternoon:

  • Delegate washing and clearing up to others and relax with a cup of tea or fizz!
  • Easy and no fuss! We hope you enjoy your stress-free Mother’s Day and that you find being at home significantly easier to manage the generations than eating out!

 

NO FUSS MOTHER’S DAY MENU

Starter: Smoked Salmon Pate

255g/9oz smoked salmon

110g/4oz cream cheese

2 tbsp double cream

½ lemon, juice only

2 tbsp chopped chives (plus some extra chives to sprinkle over the top)

Pinch of sugar

Freshly ground pepper

(Serves 6)

Method

Pop all the ingredients into a blender and pulse until it has a consistency that you desire. Plenty of pepper is good if you like a bit of heat, but be aware that children and the elderly may not. Serve with hot brown toast.

Main Course: Chicken Gratin

75 g (3oz) butter

1 onion, finely sliced

500g pack chicken thigh fillets, cut into bite-size pieces

150 g (5oz) frozen peas

50 g (2oz) plain flour

500 ml (17 fl 0z) milk

3 thyme sprigs, leaves picked

1 tbsp wholegrain mustard

2 medium floury potatoes

(Serves 4, so double up if 8 is required)

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan) gas mark 4. Melt 25g (1oz) of the butter in a large pan and gently fry the onion and chicken for 10min until onion is softened. Stir in the peas, and then empty mixture into a sieve set over a bowl to drain excess moisture.

Set aside 1tsp of the remaining butter, and then add the rest to the empty pan and melt over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 30sec. Take pan off heat and gradually mix in the milk until smooth. Return pan to heat and cook, stirring constantly, until sauce is thickened and smooth – about 5min.

Add the thyme leaves, mustard and plenty of seasoning. Pour into a large ovenproof serving dish and stir in the drained chicken mixture.

Cut the potatoes (unpeeled) into 5mm (1/4in) rounds. Arrange slices over the chicken mixture in a single layer, overlapping slightly. Melt the remaining teaspoon of butter, then brush lightly over the potatoes. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Cook in the oven for 45-50min or until the potatoes are lightly golden and tender. Serve with steamed greens.

This dish is simple enough for the whole family to enjoy without having to make a separate meal for children.

Taken from Good Housekeeping.

Dessert: Fruit & Cheesecake tartlets

4 tbsp lemon curd

2 x 200g tubs Philadelphia light cheese

6 tbsp summer fruit sauce or syrup

8 sweet dessert tartlet cases (from a pack)

100g blueberries

100g raspberry

1 tbsp cassis (blackcurrant liqueur) if available

Icing sugar, for dusting

Fresh mint sprigs

(Serves 4 if giving 2 tartlets each)

Method

– Beat the lemon curd into the soft cheese until smooth and creamy.

– Pour 1 tsp of summer fruit sauce into each dessert tartlet then top with a spoonful of the cheese mixture (set aside the remainder). Carefully mix the berries together then pile onto the cheese mixture. Stir the cassis into the remaining sauce. (You can make the tarts and sauce up to this stage and chill for 2-3 hours.)

– Dust the tarts with icing sugar. Drizzle some of the sauce over half of the plate spooning a dollop of the remaining cheesecake mixture on the plate and decorate with a sprig of mint.

Et voila!