Wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas and all good wishes for health, peace and happiness in 2017.
Thank you so much for everyone’s kind support and looking forward to welcoming new guests, familiar faces and friends back very soon.
Our plan ahead tips and tricks for your delicious Christmas dinner.
1 Make your gravy up to two days before you need it, cool quickly and store in the fridge. Heat until piping hot to serve and add some of the roasting juices for more flavour.
2 Par boil your potatoes on Christmas Eve and store in a cool place. When you start to cook them make sure your dripping or oil is smoking hot before you add to the roasting dish and place in the oven. We think Maris Piper potatoes make the best roasties.
3 Try soaking dried apricots in a tablespoon or two of brandy and then wrap in bacon to ring the changes from ‘pigs in blankets’.
4 After ensuring that it is completely cooked, make sure that you rest your turkey for ample time. Wrap it in foil covered with a clean towel and allow at least 45 minutes.
5 Always warm your dinner plates. If you have no room in the oven place in a clean washing up bowl with hot water.
6 For a delicious vegetable side dish try braised red cabbage. It eats well with goose and can easily be prepared a couple of days ahead and simply re-heated. Roast root vegetables and finish with a glaze of honey and rosemary. Shred Brussel sprouts which can be quickly stir fried with bacon. We love parsnip mash enriched with double cream infused with bay and lots of grated nutmeg.
7 For a meat free alternative try roasting a portobello mushroom until it is cooked and topping with a twice baked stilton souffle. All can be prepared easily ahead of time and finishes at the last moment.
8 It would not be Christmas without bread sauce and cranberry sauce. Both can be easily made on Christmas eve and stored in the fridge or larder to be reheated. Take a look at our recipe below:
175 g (6oz) cranberries
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons port
75g (3oz) granulated sugar
Bring the juice and cranberries to the boil and then cook until the berries are soft, add the port and allow to reduce. Finally add the sugar and stir to dissolve but do not boil at this stage. Transfer to a sterilised jar and store in the larder. Prepare a couple of days ahead of time and reheat as required.
You will need:
600ml (1pint) full fat milk
100g (4oz) homemade fresh white breadcrumbs
2 small onions, peeled and left whole studded with cloves
50g (2oz) butter
Seasoning to taste
Freshly ground nutmeg, bay leaf
75ml (3 floz) double cream
Put all the ingredients apart from the cream into a milk pan, bring up to simmering point on the AGA and then transfer to the warming oven and leave for 30 minutes. Remove the onion, add the cream, warm through, adjust seasoning and serve.