It feels like years since I last wrote a recipe post, and so it brings me great pleasure to revive my Christmas Day Recipes in today’s blogmas post!
While cooking, I normally listen to my Christmas Playlist. However, there’s no reason you can’t take your laptop or tablet in and join me in watching today’s Christmas Countdown Film!
So I hadn’t actually realised this was a film until last year when it came up in my Christmas Song Countdown! Because it has the song throughout it, I loved taking the time to watch it, so I can’t wait to watch it again tonight!
But today, since it’s a Sunday, I feel like I can cook myself a mini Christmas Dinner (a roast, I’m cooking a roast) and it made me want to share my Christmas Dinner Plans with you!
My ideal Christmas Day meal would be a full 6 course meal, spread out from about 2pm until about 10pm. Maybe when I’m hosting my own Christmas Day I can do this!
The first course would be soup, and my perfect Christmas Day soup is my dad’s Bloody Mary soup. Some of you might have heard of the Bloody Mary cocktail, and to be honest the soup is along the same lines. It’s soup-er easy to make, and I love to keep a portion or two in the freezer for the colder days! To make it, follow the instructions below!
- frylight calorie controlled spray
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 800g cans chopped tomatoes
- 2tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 75ml vodka (optional)
- juice of one lemon
- tabasco, to taste
- Heat your fry-light in a medium saucepan.
- Fry the celery for 3-4 minutes until it begins to soften, then add the cans of chopped tomatoes, 300ml of water, Worcestershire sauce, vodka, and lemon juice.
- Allow it to come to the boil, then cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, and add the tabasco to taste.
- Using a blender, blitz the soup until smooth. Serve with a roll if you wish.
So there you have your first course! One of my all time favourite soups.
Course Number 2 is the Fish course – a Prawn Cocktail!
Okay this one really is simple, and yet it’s actually my favourite. And it’s even something you can have all year round! Can’t believe Simon Cowell actually slated the Prawn Cocktail during an episode of The X Factor.
- 55g prawns per person
- 4 tbsp ketchup or tomato puree
- 4 tbsp mayonnaise
- lemon juice to taste
- a few splashes of tabasco sauce to taste
- shredded little gem lettuce
- paprika to serve.
- Combine the ketchup/tomato puree and the mayonnaise
- Stir in the lemon juice and tabasco sauce to taste.
- Mix in the prawns.
- Serve the prawn cocktail on a bed of lettuce and sprinkle some paprika over the top.
And there you have it! Another super tasty course, waiting for someone to make it!
Course Number 3 is the salad course – what better time to have a pork terrine?
So this one isn’t as simple to make, but it is so worth the hassle! If I say that last year I started preparing it on Friday for serving on Sunday. But it freezes really easily, so you could actually make it now and defrost on time for The Big Day!
- 200g skinless duck breast
- 200g skinless chicken breast
- 150g pork loin fillet
- 2 crushed garlic cloves
- 3 tbsp brandy
- 2 tbsp thyme
- 2 tbsp oil
- 250g thin rindless streaky bacon
- 1kg sausage meat
- 150ml double cream
- 4 tbsp parsley
- 2 tbsp tarragon
- 1 tbsp thyme
- salt and pepper to season
- Mix the duck, chicken, pork, garlic, brandy, 2 tbsp thyme, oil and pepper in a large bowl. Cover this and leave it to marinate in the fridge for 24 hours.
- Drain the meats and cut them into small chunks before browning them on the stove. Season, and then leave to cool.
- Grease a loaf tin (roughly 1 litre in size), and arrange the bacon on the base and sides – double layering the base, and leaving enough over the sides to fold over the top.
- Soften your sausage meat with cream and the rest of the herbs before mixing in the now cold meat. Scoop this into the loaf tin, pressing down well, before covering with more bacon over the top.
- Heat your oven to 180C (for a fan oven) and double wrap the top of the terrine in foil. Place the loaf tin in a large deep-sided roasting pan and pour boiling water up to half way.
- Bake for one hour before removing from the oven and leaving to cool. Place this in the fridge overnight.
- Place the tin in a pan of just boiled water in order to soften the bacon. Once softened, you should find it easy to remove the tin from the terrine.
- Slice and serve with salad.
So far, we’ve covered my 3 favourite starters. Naturally, I need all 3 on Christmas day, regardless of how many weight watchers points they would be each!
Course 4 – The Main Course!
Everyone knows what your christmas main consists of, but here’s how I prepare mine!
- 1 turkey crown (most come with it written on the side how many it serves)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 4 tbsp orange juice
- 2 tsp thyme leaves
- chicken stock
- Preheat your oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. My oven is a little strange with temperatures so I always adjust the temperature to match the oven. Only you know your oven so go with your gut instinct!
- Mix, in a small bowl, your maple syrup, orange juice and thyme. This is your glaze.
- Put your turkey crown in a roasting tray – piece of advice, a disposable one is perfect for this and you’ll appreciate it when it’s time to do the dishes. Generously brush the skin with the glaze. Season well with salt and pepper.
- Pour chicken stock into the roasting tin around the turkey up to a depth of around 2cm (roughly 500ml).
- Calculate your cooking time. Allow 20 minutes per kg plus an extra 70 minutes. Of course, a lot of the turkey crowns now come with this already calculated and written on the packaging so check there to save yourself any calculations!
- Place your turkey tin in the oven and remember to re-glaze every 20 minutes or so.
- When time is up, remove your turkey from the oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before carving. To check your turkey is cooked through, check the juices are running clear.
Roast Potatoes – Now this is one that you can easily cheat – buy a pack of ready made and shove them in the oven! However, as a family we always have homemade roasties on Christmas Day.
- approx 650-700g potatoes. Maris Piper work best in my opinion (this is for 4 people)
- 3 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp turmeric
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 200°C (notice that here’s your first problem – two different temperatures for things that need to be done at the same time!) and peel and half your potatoes. For larger potatoes, you may wish to quarter them.
- Put your empty (yes empty) roasting tray in the oven to preheat.
- Parboil your potatoes for 8-10 minutes on the hob in a large pot of boiling water.
- Drain your potatoes and dry them, before tossing them in the mix of flour, oregano, turmeric and salt and pepper.
- Pour your oil into the hot tray and stick it back in the oven for 5 minutes. Allow your potatoes to sit out in the open during this time as it helps crisp them slightly.
- Add your potatoes to the oil and toss them so they’re fully coated in the oil. Roast for approximately 40 minutes, remembering to turn them half way, and take them out when golden and crispy.
Mashed Potato – Again, this is something you can cheat by buying the ready made stuff. Alternatively, you can make your own in advance and then shove it in the microwave for 10 minutes before serving!
- 900g potatoes (can use the same ones as above!)
- 250ml milk
- 2 tbsp butter
- salt and pepper to taste
- Peel and cut your potatoes, same as in the roast potato section.
- Pop them in a pot and pour in enough water to cover them.
- Add a pinch of salt and bring the water to the boil. Once boiling, lower the heat so it’s simmering until the potatoes are soft (about 15 minutes) and drain.
- Return the potatoes to the pot and add your milk and butter.
- Using either a masher or an electric beater, mash the mix until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Carrots and Parsnips – Now, at home we tend to have this mashed and so it’s cooked the exact same way as the mashed potato recipe above (without the milk and with extra butter) however when cooking in the flat for the last 2 years, we prefered to roast the vegetables.
- 250g carrots
- 250g parsnips
- 2 tbsp oil
- 4 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- Peel your vegetables and preheat your oven to 220°C. As with the roast potatoes, put an empty tray into the oven to heat.
- Slice your vegetables into halves or quarters, so they are all a similar size.
- In a large bowl, mix the oil, honey and mustard. Add your vegetables and toss thoroughly to evenly coat the pieces.
- Place them on the hot tray and roast for around 30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
Note: I tend to cheat for this and instead, I only mix the mustard and the honey, before adding the vegetables to the same tray as the potatoes! Saves on dishes, and means I save a little oil!
Brussel Sprouts – the bane of all Christmas dinners. Who actually enjoys these? And yet I couldn’t count it as a Christmas dinner without these! So here’s how I make them slightly more tolerable.
- 15 sprouts halved length-wise
- 1 and a half tbsp butter
- 1 and a half tbsp oil
- 3 cloves garlic (crushed)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Melt the butter in the oil in a pan over a medium-high heat.This is where I miss my gas hob at home! Do this until the butter is ‘foamy’
- Reduce the heat a little before adding the garlic. Cook this until it is lightly browned and then take it out and bin it (yes really)
- Add sprouts cut-side down, cover and cook without stirring on a medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes.
- Serve them up!
For the Gravy, Pigs in blankets and Stuffing I would recommend just buying ready made or powers that you just add water to for the gravy and stuffing. It saves a lot of time and hassle! Follow the instructions on the packaging and keep quiet when people compliment your skills on these three things!
Now, this is where my Christmas dinner differs a lot. I can’t count it as Christmas meal without having some Christmas pudding with some brandy butter! I have never actually made this before, so until I figure out how to, I’d happily buy from the shop! But one thing I love to make is my Citrus Crush – a bit like a frozen slushy! In fact, my mouth is watering at the thought of it!
- 250g caster sugar
- 300ml water
- 2 grapefruits (halved)
- 4 oranges (halved)
- 2 limes (halved)
- Dissolve the sugar in the water in a pot on the hob. Remove the sugary water from the heat and leave to cool.
- Juice the fruit and sieve the juice into the now cooled sugar water.
- Pour this into a container, roughly pour in 2-3cm in depth but I find this doesn’t overly matter.
- Freeze this for 2 hours. Remove, and ‘fluff’ (I mash) it with a fork.
- Return it to the freezer and now fluff every half hour between now and serving. I tend to forget so I don’t think it overly matters but just as long as you give it a chance to fully freeze. Mash it before serving though!
To finish my Christmas dinner, if there’s still time and room, I would serve up a big cheese board with blue cheeses, brie, boursin, port salut, and a few other cheeses! And of course I would need to have a few hovis biscuits with it all.
What’s in your ideal Christmas meal? Will you be using my recipes at all over this festive season? Let me know below!