Commercial feature It might seem as much of a tradition as the mince pies and silly hats, but getting stressed out while making Christmas dinner for the family doesn’t have to be a given. Here’s a few Christmas turkey recipes that should help you free up a little more time to enjoy the special day, whether that means a long afternoon walk or flopping in front of the TV with a glass of wine.
Simple buttered turkey
This is one of the easiest, no-fuss ways of getting your roast turkey spot on every time. First, preheat your oven to 190ºC, 375ºF, Gas Mark 5, or 170ºC for a fan oven. Next remove the giblets from the turkey before placing it in a roasting tin. Cut 125g of butter into smallish pieces, and then look for a gap in the skin of the turkey. Usually you’ll see this around the top of the breast, but it shouldn’t matter too much – the idea is just to get the butter under the skin so it bastes thoroughly as it cooks, keeping the meat nice and moist. Add a few pieces of butter to the bird’s cavity, and season all over with salt and pepper.
Now, pour half a glass of wine, water or stock into the tin. A 3.5kg turkey will need to cook for 2 hours and 20 minutes, a while a 4.5 kg roast will be ready in 3 hours. For larger birds, add an extra 20 minutes for every kilogram. That’s pretty much it, but letting it rest for 15 minutes afterwards will really bring out the flavour, while a tablespoon or two of flour mixed into the roasting juices will make a thick, tasty gravy.
Roast turkey and couscous
It may not seem that festive, but this Middle Eastern-style dish is fresh, tasty and thankfully light on the washing up compared to roast potatoes and all the other trimmings. Just make the buttered turkey above, perhaps adding a little lemon juice to the butter. Now cut up a mix of red peppers, onions, courgettes, aubergines and tomatoes – or pretty much whatever veg you fancy – and lay them in a roasting tin with a healthy glug of olive oil and some salt and pepper. Roast at 180ºC for around an hour, before mixing together with plain cooked couscous, a little cumin, cinnamon and perhaps some dried apricots. Serve with the thickened pan juices.
Quick turkey roast
If you’re not catering for a crowd, a whole turkey might still seem a bit too much bother. In that case, a Golden Norfolk Free Range Butter Basted Turkey Breast Joint is a great alternative. Made from 100% breast meat so nothing goes to waste, this roasts in less than an hour and is perfect with simple sides such as steamed greens and roast new potatoes. Christmas without the fuss – just the way it should be.
For more information, or to see some more of our delicious, quick and easy turkey recipes, visit Bernard Matthews Farms.