Mindy Belle

Life in the Country

Christmas Dinner 2014 – Part one


Festive Roast Turkey with Apricots and Cranberries

Wheel & Barrow recipe

For the Turkey
  • 1 large turkey breast
  • 1 litre water
  • 1¼ cups dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 20g salt
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ tsp black peppercorns
  • 4 cloves
  • 4 all spice
  • 100ml maple syrup.
For the Stuffing
  • 300g fresh sourdough breadcrumbs
  • 100g blanched whole almonds
  • 100g dried cranberries
  • 150g butter
  • 2 onions finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
For the Apricots
  • 250g dried apricots soaked in enough water to cover, for several hours until swollen
  • 150-200g frozen cranberries
  • 100ml maple syrup
  • 20ml orange blossom water
For the Turkey
Bring all ingredients (except the turkey) to the boil, remove from the heat & allow to cool. Add the turkey & brine for at least 1 hour or overnight in the fridge. Drain & pat dry. Open the turkey out and stuff with stuffing and roll. Truss with string to form a neat log. Sprinkle with pepper. Heat a pan with a small amount of oil and gently sear the turkey until golden on all sides. Place in the oven at 150°C for about 1 hour until cooked, allow to rest before serving.
For the Stuffing
Melt butter in a pan & then over low heat cook the onions until soft, add the remaining ingredients & season to taste. Set aside to cool.
For the Apricots
Strain the apricots, reserving the liquid and add the liquid and maple syrup to a pan & cook until it starts to become a little syrupy. Add the orange blossom water, apricots, cranberries & any juices from the resting turkey. Cook until glazed. Serve the turkey on a platter, serve with roasted baby carrots & scatter over the apricot mix & a few roasted pistachios.
Bourbon- Glazed Ham with Warm Potato and Celery Salad
7 Kg Cooked Leg of ham
whole cloves , to decorate
2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup of Bourbon
2 cups of water
Preheat the oven 180 degrees
Cut through the rind of ham 10cbm from the shank end of the leg. To remove rind, run thumb around edge of ring just under skin.
Start pulling rind from widest edge of ham, continue to pull rind carefully away from the fat up to the shank end. Remove rind completely. Score
across the fat at about 4 cm intervals, cutting lightly through the surface of the fat( not the meat ) in a diamond pattern. Decorate with cloves.
Combine sugar and bourbon in a small bowl. Pour the water into large baking dish, place ham on oiled wire rack in dish. Brush ham all over with one-third of the bourbon glaze.
Roast, uncovered 1 1/4 hour or until browned, brushing often with remaining glaze. Cover ham loosely with foil stand 15 mins before slicing. I wrapped the ham in a cloth and chilled the ham before serving the next day.
Warm Potato and Celery Salad – Women’s Weekly recipe
1 kg Kipfler potatoes peeled ( fingerlings )
1 Tablespoon of mustard
2 Tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/4 cup  extra virgin olive oil
3 stalks celery, trimmed , sliced thinly
1 small red onion, sliced thinly
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup seeded kalamata olives, drained.
Boiled peeled potatoes until tender. Meanwhile whisk mustard ad vinegar in a small bowl, season, whisk in oil.
When potatoes are cool enough to handle, slice thickly.
Combine Potato in serving bowl with half the dressing add celery,
red onion, parsley, olives and remaining dressing, toss gently to combine. Sprinkle with some celery leaves, if you like.
Beetroot Salad – Jamie Oliver recipe  
4 good-sized beetroots, different colours if possible, scrubbed, peeled and cut into fine matchsticks
3 ripe pears, peeled, cored and cut into matchsticks
1 lemon oil dressing recipe
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
200 g feta cheese
1 small bunch fresh mint, smallest leaves picked
1 large handful sunflower seeds, optional
Beetroot saladMethod
When most people think about beetroot in salads, they think of big vinegary crinkle-cut chunks from a jar and immediately say no! But remember, beetroots are only vinegary when they’re pickled. When simply boiled or roasted they are juicy and sweet as you like. Raw beetroot is amazing in salads, giving you a deep, earthy, minerally flavour, lots of crunch and, of course, incredible colours! Did you know you can get golden and stripy beetroot as well as purple? Have a look next time you’re at a farmers’ market or buy some seeds and grow a few yourself.Remember to wear an apron when chopping beetroot, and wash your board and hands afterwards or you’ll get red fingerprints everywhere. If your knife skills aren’t up to speed yet, buy one of those matchstick peelers or matchstick mandolins in good cook shops. Then you’ll be really quick at it.

Dress the beetroot and pear matchsticks in a little of the lemon oil dressing and season with some salt and pepper. Taste to check that the flavours are balanced and lovely, and add a little more lemon juice to check the sweetness of the pears and beetroots if you need to.

Dress on white Platter  – Serve


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