We chat to TV chef Gino D'Acampo about his perfect family Christmas

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We caught up with Gino to chat about festive feasts, gifts and magical movies...

Gino Di Campo
Italian stallion Gino D'Acampo is a firm favourite on our telly box and we're always impressed with his rough and ready approach to cooking.

As this year's Ideal Food Ambassador for the Ideal Home Show at Christmas he was brimming with ideas, advice and inspiration for the slightly more culinary challenged among us.

We caught up with the man himself to find out about his perfect family Christmas...

What will you be doing to your house come Christmas – do you go 'all out' with decorations?

As it's so difficult to find opportunities for the whole family to get together and spend a relaxing time with each other, we usually go away for the Christmas period. We've thought about putting up a palm tree on the beach – but it's not really the same . . .Believe it or not, I have a pair of Christmas swimming trunks that I wear on the beach on the big day.

Does everyone in your family expect you to do all the cooking at Christmas?

When we've been at home, I haven't minded doing the cooking. A Neapolitan Christmas dinner might be fish, which I love - but in England, I'd probably go with roast pork or goose.

For those people already panicking about hosting a Christmas lunch, give them your top 5 tips to preparing and planning that winning Christmas feast…

1. Think ahead. Write down what you want to do and tick off the items as you go.
2. Pre-cook as many things as you can; you'll be surprised how much easier it makes things.
3. Don't try to do too much. Keep it simple and don't get too far out of your comfort zone.
4. Get everybody drinking as soon as possible. Then they won't care too much about the dinner.
5. Try to get someone else to do everything!

What are the worst and best Christmas presents you have ever received?

I can't remember the worst because it's always nice to be given something, whatever it is. The best, though, came from a cracker I pulled at a photo shoot. I'd been looking for a small nail clipper for ages and, unbelievably, that's exactly what fell out of the cracker! It's perfect and, as we speak, is nestling in my travel bag.

What is your favourite...

a. Christmas movie? Home Alone; great to watch with the kids
b. Christmas carol? Not strictly a carol, but I like Jingle Bells!
c. Christmas pop song? All I Want For Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey

What is on your Christmas gift wish list this year?

I'm tearing about the place all the time, so the thing I want most is a nice rest!

What is your favourite possession at home – be it gadget, piece of furniture, appliance – and why?

I can't live without being able to get a great espresso when I need one - so my new Lavazza coffee machine is certainly a favourite.

What do you think?



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