Christmas Recipes

Turkey Breast Stuffed with Italian Sausage & Cranberries

Ingredients

For the stuffing

  •     100 gram(s) dried cranberries
  •     100 ml Marsala
  •     2 tablespoon(s) olive oil
  •     2 echalion shallot(s) or banana shallots (peeled and finely chopped)
  •     ¼ teaspoon(s) Ground cloves
  •     ½ teaspoon(s) ground allspice
  •     2 teaspoon(s) fresh sage (chopped)
  •     1 kilogram(s) Italian sausages
  •     2 egg(s) (beaten)
  •     50 gram(s) grated Parmesan (approx.)
  •     60 gram(s) breadcrumbs (approx.)

For the turkey joint

  •     5 kilogram(s) double breast turkey joint (boned, butterflied, with skin left on)
  •     4 tablespoon(s) goose fat (or duck fat)

stuffed turkey breastMethod

  • Put the cranberries and Marsala into a small saucepan and bring to a boil, then take off the heat and leave to one side.
  • Put the oil into a large frying pan or similar heavy-based pan, and fry the shallots for a minute or so, then add the spices and shredded sage, turning them in the soft shallots.
  • Squeeze the sausage meat out of its skins, add to the pan and break it up – using a wooden fork and spatula for ease – turning it in the hot pan until it loses its pinkness. This will take about 5 minutes.
  • Take the frying pan off the heat and turn the contents into a large bowl, mixing in the steeped cranberries and any Marsala clinging to them, and leave to cool. You can cover with clingfilm and put in the fridge for up to 2 days at this stage.
  • When you are ready to stuff the turkey breast, take the bowl of sausagemeat out of the fridge.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6.
  • Uncover the bowl of sausagemeat, add the eggs, Parmesan and breadcrumbs and – I use my hands for this – mix well.
  • Lay the butterflied turkey joint out in front of you. It really does look like a butterfly, though admittedly a fleshy one. Spread the stuffing out first in the slight cavity in the centre of the butterfly and then outwards onto the wings though not going right up to the edge (or it will squodge out when cooking) but as evenly as possible over the whole joint.
  • Carefully, in one swift but steady movement, fold one “wing” over the other to close the joint, and then sit the turkey on a large roasting tin, breast bone (or where the breast bone would be) uppermost as it would look were it the whole bird, with the pointier bit furthest away from you. Thread 2 skewers through the base – i.e., the widest part that is nearer you– to keep it closed, and smear it all over with the duck or goose fat.
  • Roast the turkey breast for 2–2½ hours, then check it is cooked with a turkey or meat thermometer. When cooked, it should read 75°C in the centre. (If you’re leaving it to rest,as you should, or to cool, you could take it out at 73°C – it will retain heat and continue to cook for a short while once out of the oven.)
  • Flex your muscles, then lift out onto a carving board, and leave to rest for at least 20 minutes. Or leave to get cold if you are eating it as part of a cook-ahead buffet.
  • Cut through the whole joint in wide slices right across; they will need to be quite thick, at least 1cm maybe 2cm, to keep the stuffing intact within the slice.
  • As you place it on table or sideboard, dot around it the condiments of your choice: I revert to Christmas in Italy here by putting a lusciously extravagant pot or two of Italian mostarda di Cremona on the table alongside: this is a hot and sweet preserve of mustardy candied fruits that gleam beautifully and taste both festive and fabulous.

Above recipe courtesy: Nigella Lawson

Winter Pudding Bombe

Ingredients

  • 2 x 500ml tubs of good-quality vanilla ice cream (I like Green and Blacks)
  • 1 x 1kg panettone
  • 125ml Vin Santo
  • 3 heaped tablespoons good raspberry jam
  • 25g shelled pistachios
  • 75g tinned sour cherries, drained
  • 40g glacé clementines (or other glacé fruit), thinly sliced
  • 2 clementines, 1 peeled and sliced into rounds
  • 200g good-quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), bashed up

winter pudding bombeMethod

This time of year, I think it’s important to have some clever cheats up your sleeve. Puddings you can make ahead of time then leave in the freezer until needed are great. If you try and do everything on the day, you’ll be dead on your feet come January and it won’t have felt like much of a holiday at all. I see this dessert as a sort of cross between a summer pudding and an arctic roll, so it hits a lot of those retro buttons. Because it’s an assembly job, anybody at all can make this – so if you’ve got someone at your house that won’t muck in because they say they can’t cook, put them to work on this!

  • Get your ice cream out of the freezer so it can soften a little while you get things ready. Line a 2 litre pudding bowl with 3 layers of cling film. Use a serrated knife to slice a four 2cm thick rounds off of your panettone then cut them in half. You’ll have some panettone left over, so keep this for another time. Arrange six of the slices in a single layer around the bowl and push them down if they overlap. Drizzle some Vin Santo around the sponge so it soaks in, then use the back of a spoon to smear the jam over the sponge.
  • Add 1 tub of ice cream to the bowl and use the spoon to spread it around in a thick layer. Sprinkle in the pistachios, cherries and glacé fruit then layer the clementine slices on top. Add the other tub of ice cream. Spread it out, working quickly so the ice cream doesn’t completely melt. Put the rest of the panettone slices on top of the ice cream, drizzle over some more Vin Santo then cover the bowl tightly with cling film. Press a plate down on top to press everything down, then freeze overnight, or longer.
  • When you’re ready to serve it, put the bashed-up chocolate in a bowl and get that over a pan of simmering water on a really low heat. Leave the chocolate to melt while you unwrap your amazing winter bombe and carefully turn it onto a beautiful serving dish. Add a few gratings of clementine zest to the chocolate and when it’s nicely melted, pour it over the top so it oozes down the sides and looks delicious.

Above recipe courtesy: http://www.jamieoliver.com

Italian Christmas Pudding Cake

Ingredients

  • 625 gram(s) panettone (or pandoro)
  • 6 tablespoon(s) Tuaca liqueur
  • 2 egg(s) (at room temperature)
  • 75 gram(s) caster sugar
  • 500 gram(s) mascarpone (at room temperature)
  • 250 ml double cream (at room temperature)
  • 125 ml Marsala
  • 75 gram(s) marrons glaces (pieces)
  • 125 gram(s) mini chocolate chips (or regular chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate)
  • 100 gram(s) Pistachio nuts (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoon(s) Pomegranate seeds

italian christmas pudding cakeMethod

  • Using a serrated knife, cut the panettone roughly into 1cm slices, then use about a third of these to line the bottom of a 22 or 23cm springform cake tin. Tear off pieces to fit so that there are no gaps; panettone is fabulously soft and mouldable, so this isn’t a hard job. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of the Tuaca (or other liqueur of choice) over it so that the panettone lining is dampened. It looks like a beautiful golden patchwork made out of cake.
  • Now get on with the luscious filling. Whisk – using a freestanding electric mixer for ease – the eggs and sugar until very frothy and increased in volume and lightness.
  • More slowly, whisk in the mascarpone and double cream, then gradually whisk in the Marsala and carry on whisking until the mixture is thick and spreadable. Remove 250ml (a good cupful) to a bowl or other container, cover and put in the fridge; this is for the top layer, which is not added until you serve the cake.
  • Crumble the marrons glacés into the big bowl of mascarpone cream mixture, followed by 100g of the chocolate chips and 75g of the chopped pistachios, and fold in. Use half of this creamy filling to top the panettone layer that is lining the cake tin.
  • Use another third (approx.) of the panettone slices to cover the cream filling, again leaving no holes for the cream to escape through. Dampen with another 2 tablespoons of liqueur.
  • Spoon on the other half of the cream mixture and spread it evenly. Then top with a third and final layer of panettone, covering the cream as before, and drizzle over it the last 2 tablespoons of liqueur.
  • Cover tightly with clingfilm, pressing down on the top a little, and put in the fridge overnight or for up to 2 days.
  • When you are ready to serve, take the cake out of the fridge, unmould and sit it on a flat plate or cake stand, then spread with the reserved mascarpone mixture. Don’t try to lift the cake off the base, as the panettone slices at the bottom are too delectably damp.
  • Scatter the top – and all around the cake, if wished – with the remaining chocolate chips and chopped pistachios and your pomegranate “jewels”. These sprinklings also provide beauteous camouflage for any less than aesthetically uplifting edges of the springform base which may be visible.

Above recipe courtesy: http://www.nigella.com

Appam (Vellepam)

Ingredients

  • Raw Rice – 2 cups
  • Shredded coconut – handful
  • Cooked rice – Handful (You could also use pressed rice/poha/aval instead)
  • yeast – 1/2 spoon
  • sugar – 2-3 tspn
  • Salt – as needed

appam

Method

  • Soak the rice for 2 hours.
  • Grind coconut and cooked rice together until smooth. To this add the rice and grind everything together.
  • Add the yeast, salt and sugar and mix well. Let it ferment for few hours or overnight.
  • Make Appam in the appam griddle else make it like pancakes on regular griddle. Pour a spoonful of batter and spread using circular motion by holding the handle of the griddle.
  • Serve it with sweetened coconut milk, stew, kala chana curry or with any kurma.

Tips: If you do not like the smell of yeast, add a pinch of baking soda 30 minutes before making the appams.
Above recipe courtesy: http://simpleindianrecipes.com

Chicken Stew

Ingredients

  • Chicken – 3/4 kg (cut into medium size pieces)
  • Onion – 2 medium, thinly sliced
  • Green chilly – 4-5
  • Ginger & garlic – 1 tbsp, finely chopped
  • Potato – 1 medium, cubed
  • Carrot – 1 small-medium, cubed
  • Cinnamon – a small piece
  • Cardamom – 4
  • Cloves – 4
  • Whole pepper – 1/4-1/2 tsp
  • Fennel seeds – a small pinch
  • Medium thick coconut milk -  2 1/2 – 3 cups
  • Thick coconut milk – 1  cup
  • Cashew paste – 1 tbsp (optional)
  • Coconut oil
  • Salt
  • Curry leaves

chicken stewMethod

  • Crush the whole masala (number 4 ingredient). Heat oil in a deep pan & splutter the whole masala. Add onion, ginger &garlic, green chilly & curry leaves. Saute till onion becomes soft and keep in mind that onions should not brown in this recipe. When onion becomes soft add chicken pieces, salt and potato cubes. Mix well. Add medium thick coconut milk and cover & cook.
  • When the chicken is half done, add the cubed carrots too. Continue cooking till the chicken is fully done. Add the cashew paste to the thick coconut milk & mix well. When the chicken is cooked completely add the thick coconut milk. Reduce the flame & cook for 5 -7  minutes or until you get the required thickness. Garnish with fried small onion/shallots & curry leaves. Serve hot with appam or bread.

Notes:  I used chicken with bones. The weight f the chicken given here is after cleaning. To make cashew paste, soak around 7-10 cashews in 1- 2 tbsp hot water for 10 mins. Grind the cashew along with the water to a smooth paste. Cashew paste is usually added to thicken the gravy & make it more creamier. To enhance the taste & flavor, you can garnish the stew with small onion & curry leaves fried in ghee/coconut oil. You can also make this in a pressure cooker in the same way.

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