• November 9

    Special Grandpa’s Turducken

    Preparation time: 1 hour

    Cooking time: 4 hours

    Serves: 12-14

    Ingredients

    • 2 3/4 cups prepared savory bread stuffing (room temperature, divided)
    • 2 cups prepared cornbread stuffing (room temperature, divided)
    • 1/2 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
    • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
    • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter (room temperature)
    • 3 cloves garlic (quartered)
    • 6 fresh sage leaves
    • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
    • 7 to 9 kg turducken
    • 1 tablespoon browning sauce
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

    METHOD

    1. Gather the ingredients.
    2. Measure out 2 1/4 cups of bread stuffing and set aside in a bowl. Place 1 1/2 cups of the cornbread stuffing aside in another bowl.
    3. Place the remaining 1/2 cup of bread stuffing in a third bowl and add the remaining 1/2 cup of the cornbread stuffing. Add the whole berry cranberry sauce and pecans and toss gently to combine. You should now have 3 separate bowls of stuffings.
    4. In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the butter, garlic, sage, and thyme until the herbs are finely chopped.
    5. Gently run your hand under the turkey skin to make sort of a pocket, but do not separate the skin completely from the meat. Distribute the butter herb mixture evenly under the skin.
    6. Rub the skin with the browning sauce, then the olive oil. Sprinkle generously with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
    7. Flip the turkey over so it is open and skin-side down. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    8. Preheat oven to 150C.
    9. Spread bread stuffing evenly over the turkey cavity. Place duck on top of bread stuffing, skin-side down.
    10. Spread the cranberry nut stuffing on top of the open duck cavity. Top with the chicken, skin-side down.
    11. Spread cornbread stuffing on top of the open chicken cavity. Skewer the back of the chicken closed.
    12. Bring up the sides of the duck to cover the chicken. Skewer the back of the duck closed.
    13. Repeat the process with the turkey.
    14. Carefully turn the turducken over, so it is seam-side down and breast-side up. Remove all skewers except the last one holding the turkey together.
    15. Place turducken in a heavy roaster. Roast 3 to 4 hours, until a meat thermometer inserted in the very center of the chicken stuffing, reaches 70C.
    16. Baste once per hour with pan juices. If turducken begins to get too brown, tent loosely with heavy-duty aluminum foil that has been coated with vegetable spray.
    17. Let the turducken rest 30 minutes before carving.
    18. Slice the turducken across the breast to show off each layer.
    19. Serve and enjoy!

  • November 9

    Grandma’s Special Stuffed Chicken

     Preparation time: overnight

    Cooking time: 1 to 2 hours

    Serves: 4-6

    Ingredients

    • 5-1.8kg chicken, giblets removed, trussed
    • 25g butter
    • ½ unwaxed lemon, juice only
    • 100ml white wine or vermouth
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper

    For the stuffing:

    • 15g butter
    • 1 large onion, finely chopped
    • ½ unwaxed lemon, finely grated zest only
    • 5 leaves fresh sage, finely chopped (or ½ tbsp dried sage)
    • 100g fresh white breadcrumbs
    • 1 egg, beaten

    For the alternative sausagemeat stuffing:

    • 15g butter,
    • 1 large onion, finely chopped
    • 200g sausagemeat
    • 1 eating apple, grated
    • 4 sprigs fresh thyme, finely chopped

    For the gravy:

    • 1 tbsp plain flour
    • 100ml dry white wine
    • 300ml chicken stock

    Method

    1. The day before you roast your chicken, season it inside and out with salt. Loosely wrap it in kitchen paper, then put it in a tub or wrap it securely in foil. Chill it in the fridge. An hour before you want to roast it, remove it from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature.
    2. Preheat the oven to 220C.
    3. For the stuffing, melt the butter in a frying pan over low heat, add the onion and cook until soft and translucent. Put the onion in a bowl and allow to cool, then mix in the lemon zest, sage, and breadcrumbs. Season well with salt and pepper and add the egg, mixing thoroughly. (If making the sausagemeat stuffing, do exactly the same, mixing the fried onion with the sausagemeat, apple, and herbs.)
    4. Fill the cavity of the chicken with the stuffing, making sure you leave a little air between the stuffing and the top of the bird to allow the air to circulate. If you have any stuffing leftover, you can stuff it into the neck end.
    5. Rub the butter over the chicken, then squeeze the lemon juice over it and put it in a roasting tin. Mix the wine with 100ml water and pour over the chicken.
    6. Roast for 15 minutes, then turn the heat down to 180C and roast for a further 60–80 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear when it is pierced through the thickest part with a skewer (the cooking time will depend on the size of the chicken).
    7. Remove the bird from the tin, cover with foil and set aside to rest. Pour off the tin juices and strain off any fat, then set aside. To make the gravy, sprinkle the flour over the tin. Stir over low heat to make a roux with the scrapings in the bottom of the tin, then pour in the wine. Let this bubble up, then gradually add the pan juices and stock. You can transfer the gravy to a saucepan if you like – the roasting tin should look clean. Simmer until you have a thin, well-flavoured gravy.

  • November 9

    Festive Turkey Breast Wrapped in Bacon

    Preparation time: 40 minutes

    Cooking time: 2 hours

    Serves: 6

     Ingredients

    • drizzle of vegetable oil, plus extra for greasing
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • 24 rashers smoked streaky bacon
    • 2 tbsp fresh breadcrumbs
    • 400g pack sausages (we used pork & leek), meat squeezed from the skins
    • 8 sage leaves, chopped, plus a few small leaves to serve
    • 250g cranberry sauce, see goes well with for recipe or buy a good-quality jar
    • 450g turkey breast steaks

     

    Method

    1. Heat a drizzle of oil in a frying pan, and use a little more to grease a 900g loaf tin. Put the onion in the pan and cook gently for 10-15 mins until caramelised. Tip into a large bowl and set aside to cool. Line the loaf tin with a double strip of foil, leaving plenty overhanging either end (you can use this as a handle to remove the parcel once cooked).
    2. Stretch each piece of bacon a little with the back of your knife. Arrange the rashers so the base of the tin is covered with overlapping bacon and the rashers come neatly up the sides in a single layer, overhanging generously. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top of the bacon.
    3. Once the onion has cooled, add the sausagemeat and sage to the bowl. Mix everything together, then pack half the mixture into the tin. Spread over about a third of the cranberry sauce.
    4. Cut each turkey breast steak into three strips. Layer roughly half the turkey on top of the stuffing mix, filling any gaps like a jigsaw, but keeping the turkey in one thick layer, then season. Spread over a little more cranberry sauce, then top with the remaining stuffing, cranberry sauce, and turkey, in the same way, making sure there are no gaps between the layers. The parcel should be full to the top when you’re finished. Fold over the overhanging bacon and wrap the tin in foil. It can now be chilled for up to 2 days.
    5. Heat oven to 180C. Put the tin on a baking tray and cook for 1 hr 30 mins. Remove the tin from the oven and leave to cool for 10 mins. Carefully lift the parcel out of the tin, using the foil handles. Roll the parcel over onto a baking tray. Return to the oven for a further 15-20 mins until the outside is crisp and browning. Test the internal temperature with a thermometer, if you have one – it should read 75C when it’s ready. Or insert a metal skewer into the centre of the parcel and check it is piping hot. Cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for at least 15 mins before serving. Top with the reserved sage leaves, then slice. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 2 days.
  • November 9

    Pork Loin with Porchetta

    Preparation time: overnight

    Cooking time: over 2 hours

    Serves: 6

    Ingredients 

    For the paste filling:

    • 3 tbsp finely chopped rosemary
    • sprig thyme, leaves only, finely chopped
    • 1 head garlic, peeled and crushed
    • 1 tbsp fennel seeds, crushed
    • 1 tsp chilli flakes
    • 1 lemon, zest only
    • 50ml wine

    For the pork:

    For the spiced apple sauce:

    • 2 large apples, peeled and roughly chopped
    • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
    • ¼ tsp ground allspice
    • ¼ tsp ground cloves
    • 1 tbsp lemon juice
    • 2 tbsp light soft brown sugar
    • 15g butter

    Method

    1. For the paste filling, either put all the ingredients in a small food processor and blend until well combined (it doesn’t have to be completely smooth), or pound with a pestle and mortar.
    2. Lay the pork out, skin-side down, and rub the paste over the pork, then roll it up as tightly as you can and secure at intervals with butcher’s twine.
    3. If you have time leave in the fridge, uncovered or loosely wrapped in kitchen towel overnight – or even better, for two nights, to give the flavours time to permeate the meat and to let the skin dry out.
    4. An hour before you are ready to start cooking the pork, remove it from the fridge so it can return to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 150C.
    5. Arrange the potatoes and onion slices on the base of a large roasting tin and season with salt. Pour over the white wine (or cider) and stock (or water).
    6. Make sure the rind of the pork is dry and season it with salt. Place on top of the potatoes and onions. Cover with foil and put in the oven. Roast for four hours until the pork is cooked through – the internal temperature should read 68C (use a meat thermometer to check this).
    7. Turn the heat up to its highest setting and cook for a further half an hour to crisp up the skin. Remove from the oven and transfer the meat and potatoes to separate serving dishes. Leave the meat to rest for half an hour, uncovered, but keep the potatoes warm.
    8. To make the spiced apple sauce, put all the ingredients in a saucepan with a splash of water, then cook gently for around 10 minutes, or until the apples have softened and broken down into a purée. Taste and adjust the flavours if necessary – you may need a little more sugar.
    9. To finish the pork, strain off any liquid remaining in the tin and skim off any fat. Serve the juices alongside the meat and potatoes.
  • November 9

    Summer Roast Loin of Pork with Gravy

    Preparation time: 20 minutes

    Cooking time: 2 hours

    Serves: 6

    Ingredients

    • 8kg piece of rolled and tied pork loin with the skin scored
    • 2 garlic cloves, sliced into thin slivers
    • small bunch rosemary, broken into small sprigs
    • 3 bay leaves, torn
    • 1 onion, roughly chopped
    • 1 large carrot, chopped
    • 1 apple, peeled, quartered, cored and roughly sliced
    • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
    • 2 tbsp plain flour
    • 100ml good quality cider
    • 500ml vegetable or chicken stock

    Method

    1. If you have time, rub salt in the pork skin 2 hours before cooking and leave it uncovered in the fridge. Heat the oven to 230C. Turn the pork rind-side down and with a small knife make about 6 deep incisions along with the meat. Poke a sliver of garlic, a piece of rosemary and bay in each incision and turn the pork the right way up. If you didn’t salt the pork earlier salt the skin now.
    2. Mix the carrot, onion, and apple and scatter along the middle of a shallow roasting tray to make a bed for the pork to sit on. Sit the pork on the vegetables and rub the skin with the oil. Place the pork in the oven and leave for 15 mins then turn the heat down to 180C and continue to roast for 1hr 30 mins. If after this time you don’t have brilliant crackling turn the heat up again and check every 5 mins until the skin has crackled.
    3. Remove the pork from the roasting tray to a board to rest and pour off all but about 2 tbsp of fat from the tray. If your tray is robust enough to go on the heat then do so, if not scrape the contents into a shallow saucepan and place on the heat. Stir the flour in with the veg and cook until you have a mushy, dark amber paste then splash in the cider and bubble down to a thick paste again. Pour in the stock and simmer everything for 8-10 mins until you have thickened gravy. Strain the sauce into another saucepan pushing as much puréed apple as you can through the sieve. Simmer again and season to taste.
    4. Carve the pork loin with crackling attached into slices using a serrated knife and serve with your favourite vegetables and the apple and cider gravy.

  • November 9

    Rosemary and Garlic Lamb

    Preparation time: less than 30 minutes

    Cooking time: 1 to 2 hours

    Serves: 4-6

    Ingredients

    • 2kg leg of lamb
    • 1 bulb garlic
    • large bunch rosemary
    • sea salt and black pepper
    • 2 carrots, roughly chopped
    • 3 white onions, quartered
    • 250ml/9fl oz dry white wine
    • olive oil

    For the mint sauce:

    • 1 tbsp caster sugar
    • 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
    • 6 sprigs mint, leaves only, finely chopped

    Method

    1. Preheat the oven to 200C.
    2. Use a small, sharp knife to make 12-14 slits all over the lamb. Peel two garlic cloves and slice them into shards. Roughly squash the remaining garlic and put it into the bottom of a large roasting tin.
    3. Push a few slivers of garlic and small sprigs of rosemary down into each slot in the lamb and season with plenty of salt and pepper.
    4. Put the carrots and onions into the roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Lay the lamb on top and roast in the preheated oven for 45 minutes.
    5. For the mint sauce, mix together the sugar and vinegar until the sugar is dissolved. Add the mint and mix well. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to the fridge to steep.
    6. Remove the lamb from the oven, pour in the wine then return to the oven and roast for a further 45 minutes.
    7. When cooked, remove the lamb from the oven and transfer to a board. Cover with foil and leave to rest for 15- 20 minutes.
    8. Carve the lamb into thin slices and serve with the mint sauce and roasted vegetables.

  • November 9

    Rosemary Pork Shoulder

    Preparation time: less than 30 minutes

    Cooking time: over 2 hours

    Serves: 6-8

    Ingredients

    • 2-2.5kg half pork shoulder, boned and rolled
    • olive oil
    • sea salt
    • 3 white onions, halved
    • 2 carrots

    For the apple sauce:

    • 3 apples, peeled, cored and diced
    • 1 sprig rosemary, finely chopped
    • demerara sugar, to taste

    Method

    1. Preheat the oven to 220C.
    2. Using a very sharp knife (or a clean Stanley knife) score the skin all over, taking care not to cut through to the meat (you can ask your butcher to do this for you if you like).
    3. Drizzle the pork skin with a little olive oil and then massage one tablespoon of salt into the skin forcing it into the score marks. Put the onions and carrots into a large roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and shake around to coat. Sit the pork on top of the vegetables and place them into the preheated oven. Cook for half an hour, or until the crackling is crisp and golden-brown.
    4. Turn the oven down to 180C. Cook for 30 minutes per a half kilo, or until the pork is cooked through (the juices will run clear when pierced with a knife. Alternatively insert a skewer into the middle of the thickest part of the meat, remove and feel the skewer. The meat is cooked if the skewer is hot to touch.) To be honest, it’s hard to overcook pork shoulder, so feel free to give it longer.
    5. While the pork is cooking, make the apple sauce. Put the apples into a pan with the rosemary and 50ml of water. Cover and cook over medium-low heat for five minutes, or until the apples have started to break down a little and soften.
    6. Add 1-2 tablespoons of sugar and cook for a further five minutes stirring occasionally until the apples are collapsed but there is still a little texture to the apple sauce. Taste and adjust the sweetness if necessary. Leave to cool to room temperature.
    7. Once the pork is cooked remove from the oven and leave to rest covered in foil for 15-20 minutes. Serve the pork and crackling sliced with the apple sauce on the side.

  • November 9

    Ultimate Roast Beef

    Preparation time: 1 to 2 hours

    Cooking time: 1 to 2 hours

    Serves: 6

    Ingredients

    For the Yorkshire puddings:

    • 225g plain flour
    • 8 free-range eggs
    • 600ml milk
    • 50g beef dripping or lard
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper

    For the roast beef:

    For the roast potatoes:

    • 10 potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 or 3
    • 50g lard, beef dripping or vegetable oil
    • pinch salt

    For the vegetables:

    • 75g butter
    • 3 carrots, finely sliced
    • 1 head spring greens, finely sliced
    • 250g peas
    • wholegrain mustard, to serve

    Method

    1. For the Yorkshire puddings, put the flour in a bowl, season with salt and pepper. Add the eggs and whisk to a batter. Add the milk and whisk until smooth then place in the fridge for at least one hour, but preferably overnight.
    2. For the beef, preheat the oven to 200C.
    3. Heat a frying pan until very hot. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Fry the beef on all sides in the hot pan until nicely browned. Transfer to a roasting dish and place in the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes.
    4. Meanwhile for the roast potatoes, put the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with water, add a pinch of salt and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Drain the potatoes into a colander and shake around a little to rough up the edges.
    5. Put a deep roasting tray onto the heat and add the fat. Add the potatoes and fry on each side until they start to brown. Sprinkle with salt and place in the oven alongside the beef for 30 minutes until starting to turn golden and crisp. After 30 minutes, turn the potatoes over in the fat and return to the oven for a further 20-30 minutes.
    6. Remove the beef from the oven, cover with aluminum foil and rest for 15-30 minutes. Put the beef on board to carve then return the roasting pan to the heat, and heat over medium heat until bubbling, then add the wine and cook until reduced by half. Add the beef stock and cook until reduced by half again, season to taste.
    7. To cook the Yorkshire puddings, preheat the oven to 220C.
    8. Divide the dripping or lard between 2 x 12 hole muffin tins or Yorkshire tins. Heat the tins in the oven for 10 minutes, until smoking hot. Carefully pour the batter into the tins, filling them two-thirds of the way. Bake the Yorkshire puddings for 20 minutes. Do not open the oven door during this time.
    9. After 20 minutes, open the door to allow any steam to escape, then turn the temperature down to 190C. Cook the Yorkshire puddings for a further 15 minutes until crisp and golden-brown.
    10. For the vegetables, heat a frying pan until hot, add one-third of the butter and all the carrots. Stir to coat the carrots in the melted butter, add 110ml/4floz water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for five minutes, until the liquid has reduced to coat the carrots and they are tender. Season with salt and pepper.
    11. Repeat the process for the spring greens, cooking them for 2-3 minutes until tender.
    12. Meanwhile, bring a pan of salted water to the boil, add the peas and cook for two minutes until hot through. Drain the peas and toss them with the last of the butter.
    13. To serve, carve the beef and place onto serving plates, with the roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding and a spoonful of each of the vegetables. Finish with a drizzle of the gravy and a spoon of mustard alongside.

  • November 9

    Slow-cooked Ham with Gravy

    Preparation time: overnight

    Cooking time: over 2 hours

    Serves: 10-12

    Ingredients

    • 5kg joint boneless gammon, rind on
    • 150g black treacle

    For the glaze:

    • 1 tbsp whole cloves
    • 4 tbsp black treacle
    • 4 tbsp demerara sugar
    • 1 x tbsp mustard

    Method

    1. Preheat the oven to 250C. Let your gammon come to room temperature.
    2. Line a large roasting tin with a layer of foil, and then sit a wire rack on top of this foil. Tear off a large piece of foil (big enough to wrap around the ham) and place this over the rack on the roasting tin. Tear off a second, large piece of foil and place on top, but in the opposite way to the first, so you have 4 corners of foil ready to wrap your ham in.
    3. Sit the gammon on the foil and then pour the black treacle over it, straight onto the rind, letting it run down both sides. Don’t worry too much about spreading it over the ham, as once it’s in the heat of the oven, it will coat the ham well enough.
    4. Now lift up the sides and ends of the first layer of foil and make a seal at the top, leaving some room around the gammon, then seal the ends. Then take up the other piece of foil and do the same: you are trying to create a good seal around the gammon, so pinch together any open gaps that remain. Finally, tear off another piece of foil and put over the top of the whole parcel, making sure it’s well sealed.
    5. Put carefully into the oven and let it cook for 30 minutes, then turn the oven down to 100C and leave for a further 12–24 hours.
    6. The following day, take the gammon out of the oven and open up the foil seal. It will have made some liquid, which you can reserve to moisten the carved meat later. Carefully lift the gammon out onto a board, remove the string and peel off the rind to leave a good layer of fat.
    7. Increase the oven temperature to 200C. Using a sharp knife, cut a diamond pattern in the fat layer, drawing lines one way and then the opposite way, about 2cm apart.
    8. Stud the centre of each diamond with a clove, then mix together the black treacle, demerara sugar and Dijon mustard in a bowl and spread over the fat on the ham. It will dribble off a bit, so just spoon it back over the gammon before putting back in the oven for 20 minutes, by which time the glaze will be burnished and blistered in the heat. Remove from the oven, and transfer to the board. Let it rest for 10–20 minutes before carving into thin slices.

  • November 9

    Boiled and Baked Special Ham

    Preparation time: 30 minutes to 1 hour

    Cooking time: over 2 hours

    Serves: 8-10

    Ingredients

    • 5½ -7¼kg ham with the bone in
    • 2 onions, quartered
    • few cloves
    • few black peppercorns
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 4 tbsp mustard
    • 75g demerara sugar, depending on the size of ham
    • 300ml chicken stock (to make a gravy)

    Method

    1. Place the soaked ham in a large pan, with the onions, cloves, peppercorns and bay leaf.
    2. Cover with water, bring to the boil and skim away any impurities. Leave the ham to simmer, allowing 20 minutes per 450g(1lb).
    3. Pre-heat the oven to 190C.
    4. Once cooked, remove the ham from the pan and stand for 10-15 minutes before peeling away the skin.
    5. The fat can be left as it is or scored, creating a diamond pattern. Brush the ham with mustard and sprinkle well with the demerara sugar.
    6. Bake the ham for 30-40 minutes taking care to baste the ham with juices and the caramelised sugar. Once golden, remove from the oven and rest for 15-30 minutes before carving, or leave until cold.
    7. To make gravy, pour the chicken stock into the roasting pan to lift any residue in the pan and simmer until reduced by one-third to one-half and strain.

    Recipe Tips: The ham may need to be soaked in cold water for 24 hours, changing the water occasionally

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