It was bad enough to be confronted on Monday by a heap of Christmas shopping-inflated credit card statements on the doormat. But to sit down and have to endure an hour in the TV company of that self-satisfied twerp Huge Furry Wittering-Balls darn near sent me over the edge (River Cottage Christmas, 8pm, C4, 12 December).

Maybe it’s just me, but I like my festive TV fare to feature the odd recipe I could cook. Aside from the flambéed prawns (good if you favour the pencilled on eyebrow) and the creamed kale crostini and chestnut and sage soup (good if you want to give your guests fart attacks), the dishes were ridiculously complicated and would cost an absolute arm and a leg to make. For a start, you’d need a big hunk of wild boar meat (expensive and I’m guessing NOT available at my local supermarket). Then you’d have to go to elaborate lengths to make the cotechino and find a shed to hang it in - not to mention the wood chips to smoke the loin!

The whole thing had expensive disaster written all over it - which also pretty much sums up Jimmy’s Grow Your Own Christmas Dinner (9pm, C4, 12 December). Doherty set out to discover whether an old-fashioned Christmas dinner made using ingredients he’d grown himself would taste better than a meal made from supermarket ingredients. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist, does it, but they weren’t that much better and Doherty had shelled out £1,500 on them compared with the £120 they’d cost in a farm shop and £60 in a supermarket - which emerged the unlikely hero of the hour, despite Doherty and pal Jamie Oliver’s attempts to convince otherwise.

Fortunately, Oliver wasn’t taking the moral high ground in his own festive special: Jamie’s Christmas with Bells on (9pm, C4, 14 December). This was Oliver at his best. Take the pain out of Christmas by preparing everything in advance and wowing your guests with some showstoppers, he advised. And although most of the recipes seemed to be support acts for the main event, what’s not to like about turkey wellington, pimped up ice cream and jerky ham hocks? Better still, you could easily attempt them at home.

Watch and learn, Hugh, watch and learn.