Swap the turkey for a quiche, the martini for hot chocolate and the log for chocolate bark. Replacing the traditional dinner with a brunch is economical and just as festive. This is a formula adopted by Isabelle Bisson and her family for several years.

“Everyone in pajamas, we chat, we give each other news, we take our time,” says the 57-year-old Laval resident. The important thing is to be together! »

Mother of three children aged 24, 27 and 30, Isabelle likes to plan her Christmas meal, a brunch, with just enough detail so that the load is less heavy on the day itself, and just enough lightness to leave room for spontaneity and pleasure.

When her guests arrive, around 10 a.m., she offers mimosas, Christmas cocktails, coffee or hot chocolate. “People can decide whether they want to drink alcohol or not,” she says.

She points out that brunch is more economical because we generally drink less alcohol during this type of meal.

“I still offer white wine and red wine during the meal, but depending on the date our meeting takes place, people drink more or less,” she notes.

Isabelle serves small bites while the tree is being stripped, then everyone sits down at the table. There will be seven this year. “I don’t have any grandchildren yet,” she slips in passing.

She cooks several varied recipes to entertain “her gang”, taking care to prepare vegetarian things. “We have 50% vegetarians among us, so it’s important that everyone finds something they like! »

Vegetable quiche, gratin dauphinois, puff pastry tart with asparagus, spinach meatballs and salads are on the menu. Isabelle concocts a vegetarian tourtière, and her meat version is also placed in front of the guests. Traditional cocktail sausages are also offered in two versions: classic and veggie.

The vegetarian menu also has the advantage of being more economical: dishes based on lentils and legumes, such as pâtés and pies, are less expensive than those prepared with meat.

And when it comes to gifts exchanged, Isabelle is keen to lower costs… for the wallet and for the planet. “All year round, I collect the papers placed in the packages,” she explains, “I no longer buy rolls of wrapping paper. It’s economical for us and for the planet. »

The mother has kept the tradition of making Christmas stockings for her children. “I don’t want to buy for the sake of buying,” she confides, “I like to offer time and human experiences. We’re really trying to make an effort to reduce the amount of presents! »