How to make chestnut stuffing

turkey and stuffing

This recipe will give you enough chestnut stuffing to put half in the turkey, leaving the other half to make a delicious stuffing loaf. You can cook the stuffing loaf while your turkey rests, giving you a good window to make your gravy.

Ingredients

  • 150ml madeira wine, sherry, or port
  • 20g pack dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 onions , halved and sliced
  • 25g butter , plus extra
  • 15g pack thyme , use the leaves and reserve the stalks
  • 2 x 454g packs Cumberland sausages , skins removed
  • 200g pack whole cooked chestnuts
  • Zest 1 lemon (If you are following our recipe on how to roast a turkey, take the zest from the lemon that you will be juicing.)
  • 15g pack flat-leaf parsley , chopped
  • 85g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 10 rashers streaky bacon

Method

  1. Pour the madeira wine, sherry, or port into a large mixing bowl, then crumble in the mushrooms. Fry the onions in the butter for 10 mins, until golden. Cool, then mix with the thyme leaves, the mushrooms and their soaking liquid, and all remaining ingredients, apart from 8 of the chestnuts and the bacon. Season well.
  2. Set aside half of the chestnut stuffing. Line a greased 500g loaf tin with bacon. Pack the rest of the stuffing into the tin, then bring the rashers round over the top and secure in place with cocktail sticks. Use the reserved chestnuts to fill the spaces where the bacon meets. Chill until ready to cook. This will keep in the fridge uncooked for 2 days or can be frozen for up to a month.
  3. Pack the reserved stuffing into the neck end of your turkey. Secure the neck skin with skewers and tie the legs together. Continue preparing the turkey according to your preferred method.
  4. Once the turkey is cooked, leave to rest and put the chestnut stuffing loaf into the oven. Cook for 30 minutes at 190C/170C fan.

Traymoor at Christmas

This Christmas, Traymoor is offering a huge selection of white and bronze turkeys in a range of weights and prices. We are also stocking beef joints including fore rib and sirloin, smoked and unsmoked gammons, and venison. In addition, we can provide partridges, geese, and ducks. Our optional extras include pork chipolatas, pork cocktail sausages, pigs in blankets, and a range of patés.

Moreover, to make things easier and more economical, we have also put together a range of Christmas meat hampers. If you are considering buying several items, consider one of these packs and cut costs.

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How to make turkey gravy

Gravy boat filled with rich hot turkey gravy

When you have an entire Christmas lunch or dinner to prepare, you want everything to be perfect so you might want some pointers on how to make turkey gravy. This recipe is hassle free but it does assume that you have followed our method on how to roast a turkey. Therefore, it depends on you using the leftover giblets, neck, and onions. If you haven’t used onions in your roast, you may want to fry some up now.

Ingredients

  • Juices, fat, and onions from the roasting tin
  • 300ml medium white wine
  • 600ml good stock
  • 2 tsp redcurrant jelly
  • 1 tsp cornflour (optional)

Method

  1. If you have not already done so, transfer the juices, fat, and onions from the roasting tin to a jug or pot. Discard the neck and giblets. When the liquid settles, spoon off as much fat as you can from the top and discard.
  2. Place the tin on the hob, and pour in the wine, Using a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the tin. Reduce until the wine has almost all disappeared.
  3. Add the juices, onions and stock to the tin. Boil down for about 5 mins until reduced and a little syrupy, stir in redcurrant jelly, and season.
  4. Add any resting juices. If you prefer a thicker gravy, mix the teaspoon of cornflour with a tablespoon of water and stir into the gravy.
  5. Strain the finished gravy into a jug or sauce boat.

Traymoor at Christmas

This Christmas, Traymoor is offering a huge selection of white and bronze turkeys in a range of weights and prices. We are also stocking beef joints including fore rib and sirloin, smoked and unsmoked gammons, and venison. In addition, we can provide partridges, geese, and ducks. Our optional extras include pork chipolatas, pork cocktail sausages, pigs in blankets, and a range of patés.

Moreover, to make things easier and more economical, we have also put together a range of Christmas meat hampers. If you are considering buying several items, consider one of these packs and cut costs.

We deliver our restaurant-quality produce to homes in Essex, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, and London (North & East).

If you’ve enjoyed our article on how to make turkey gravy, then take a look at our blog page for more meat related snippets.

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How to roast a turkey

roast turkey

If you feel uncertain about how to roast a turkey, you’re not alone. For many, Christmas Dinner is the big meal of the year, and it’s no surprise that even the most competent of cooks can feel overwhelmed at the thought of pulling off the kind of Christmas feast only ever seen on the TV!

Whilst planning is paramount, and certain hacks can help you along, one thing that everybody wants to get right is the turkey. Furthermore, people fret that they won’t cook it for long enough, or that they cook it for so long that it ends up dry. By following these steps, not only will you know how to roast a turkey but you will produce a Christmas turkey that everyone will love.

Apart from basic kitchen utensils such as a chopping board and some knives, you will need a roasting tin that is big enough to accommodate the bird and some veg. In addition, we recommend you use a meat thermometer.

Ingredients

  • 5-6kg turkey plus neck and giblets (liver discarded)
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 250g stuffing
  • Handful of fresh thyme, leave removed from stems, and stems reserved
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 halved lemon
  • 1 juiced lemon, skin reserved (If you are following our recipe on how to make chestnut stuffing, take the zest from this lemon and set aside.)
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 thickly sliced onions
  • 2 roughly chopped carrots
  • 300ml white wine
  • 55g soft butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt

Method

  1. 12 hours before cooking, remove giblets and keep. Carefully loosen the skin over the turkey breast enough to get your hands underneath. Season the bird all over, including under the skin, with two tbsp salt. Place the bird into a roasting tin, breast-side up, then leave uncovered in the fridge until you are ready to cook.
  2. One hour before you begin cooking, take the turkey from the fridge and preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan.
  3. Lift up the skin that covers the neck opening, and push the stuffing up and under the skin, securing tightly underneath with a skewer or a few cocktail sticks. Weigh stuffed turkey, then calculate cooking time, allowing 40 mins per kilo. Fill the cavity with a few pieces of onion, lemon halves, lemon skin from juiced lemon, thyme stems and two bay leaves. Tie the legs together with string.
  4. Scatter the remaining onion slices, chopped carrots and half the thyme leaves over the bottom of the roasting tin to make a trivet. Add the giblets minus the liver, and sit the turkey on top.
  5. Add white wine to the roasting tin and cover with foil.
  6. Cook according to the time you calculated, checking every 45 minutes to ensure that the tray has not gone dry. If it has, add half a cup of hot water.
  7. Chop the remaining thyme leaves and mix them in a bowl, with the butter, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and garlic.
  8. Thirty minutes before the end of the cooking time, take the bird from the over and remove the foil.
  9. Spread the butter mixture all over the bird and return to the oven uncovered for about 30 more minutes.
  10. After 30 minutes, use a meat thermometer to check whether the bird is cooked. The temperature at the thickest part of the breast should read around 65 degrees centigrade, and the thickest part of the thigh should be 75 degrees centigrade. If the temperature is any lower, return the turkey to the oven and check at 15 minute intervals until the correct temperature is reached.
  11. When done, remove from the oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Then turn over and leave upside down for at least a further 20 minutes. This will allow the meat time to relax and become more succulent, giving you plenty of time to put on the vegetables and make the gravy. During this resting period, it is best to leave the bird uncovered so that the skin stays crisp.

Traymoor at Christmas

This Christmas, Traymoor is offering a huge selection of white and bronze turkeys in a range of weights and prices. We are also stocking beef joints including fore rib and sirloin, smoked and unsmoked gammons, and venison. In addition, we can provide partridges, geese, and ducks. Our optional extras include pork chipolatas, pork cocktail sausages, pigs in blankets, and a range of patés.

Moreover, to make things easier and more economical, we have also put together a range of Christmas meat hampers. If you are considering buying several items, consider one of these packs and cut costs.

We deliver our restaurant-quality produce to homes in Essex, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, and London (North & East).

If you’ve enjoyed our article on how to roast a turkey, then take a look at our blog page for more meat related snippets.

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How to select and cook your Christmas turkey

roasted christmas turkey

Although Christmas is likely to be somewhat different for many of us this year, the chances are, you are still planning a celebratory lunch and want to select a great Christmas turkey. Since it’s a once-a-year meal, even the most competent of cooks can feel daunted. So, we thought we might help by offering a few pointers.

What size of turkey do you need?

When it comes to choosing the right size of turkey for your Christmas lunch, some people simply choose the biggest one that their oven can handle. That ensures and plentiful supply of delicious meat for Christmas Day and several days after.

On the other hand, if you are planning a series of extravagant meals over the festive season, you may also want to indulge in things like gammon, rolled sirloin, or venison. So, a surplus of turkey could be wasteful. For that reason, we have produced the grid below to help you choose the right size of turkey.

 

Weight in kilos
Approximate number of servings
36
48
510
612
714
816
918
1020
1122
1224

 

The above is very much a guideline. If you’re catering for a more ‘festive’ appetite, you may want to select a Christmas turkey that is somewhat larger.

What is the best way to cook a turkey?

People often criticise turkey for being a dry meat. It makes sense, therefore, to use every trick available to ensure that the Christmas turkey is succulent and delicious. The following suggestions will help you deliver a Christmas lunch that the whole family will remember. You can also follow our guide on how to roast a turkey and how to make a turkey gravy

Start with a good quality turkey

Some turkeys are bred for flavour while others are bred for size. If a turkey is huge and cheap, the chances are that you will end up with mediocre and dry meat.

Brine overnight

Brining is a simple case of soaking the bird in a mixture of water, salt, pepper and various herbs. That liquid will get right into the meat boosting flavour and moisture when roasted. An internet search for brining a turkey will result in some great suggestions.

Use a moist stuffing

If a stuffing is too dry, it will actually absorb moisture from the meat. Make a stuffing that contains high proportions of sausage meat, prunes, and other moisture-rich ingredients.

Don’t overcook it

Since you rarely cook a bird of this size, it’s no surprise that people don’t get the timing right. You obviously don’t want to undercook the bird, so it’s common to overcompensate. The recommendation is usually something like forty minutes per kilo plus twenty minutes. In fact, this is often far too long. One of the best investments you can ever make in kitchen equipment is a meat thermometer. By all means, base your total cooking time on forty minutes per kilo, but check the internal temperature around an hour before the end of the predicted cooking time. Check the temperature by inserting the meat thermometer into the turkey’s thigh. When the temperature reaches 75 degrees centigrade, the bird is ready.

Let it rest

As with most roasted meats, your turkey will benefit from resting for about thirty minutes before carving. The meat will loosen, the juice will be redistributed, and the bird will be easier to carve. You can use the resting time to cook the vegetables and make the gravy.

Christmas selection at Traymoor

This Christmas, Traymoor is making it as easy as possible to select a Christmas turkey. We offer white and bronze turkeys in a range of weights and prices. We are also stocking beef joints including fore rib and sirloin, smoked and unsmoked gammons, and venison. In addition, we can provide partridges, geese, and ducks. Our optional extras include pork chipolatas, pork cocktail sausages, pigs in blankets, and a range of patés.

Moreover, to make things easier and more economical, we have also put together a range of Christmas meat hampers. If you are considering buying several items, consider one of these packs and cut costs.

We deliver our restaurant-quality produce to homes in Essex, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, and London (North & East).

If you’ve enjoyed our article, then take a look at our blog page for more meat related snippets.

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How to barbecue meat to perfection

Selection of meats and vegetables cooking on barbecue grill

Summer is the time to get out into the garden and enjoy a barbecue with family and friends. To help you make the most of this barbecue season, we’ve put together some tips on how to barbecue meat to perfection, and secure your position as the star of the grill.

Follow our barbecue guidelines for an al fresco dinner that won’t fail to impress.

Prepare and preheat your barbecue grill
If you didn’t clean the barbecue after you last used it, you should do so now. No one really wants a succulent fillet steak contaminated by old burnt bits of food.

An electric or gas barbecue will take around 10 or 20 minutes to get up to cooking temperature. On the other hand, if you’re using charcoal, allow about 45 minutes from ignition. You want the flames to have died down and the charcoal should be covered in an even layer of ash.

About 20 minutes before you’re ready to cook, remove the meat from the refrigerator. This will give it plenty of time to reach room temperature. You really want to avoid barbecuing meat straight from the fridge. If you’re using a marinade and haven’t already applied it, now is the time to do so.

Cook
It is advisable to brush meat with oil as this will help with cooking and will stop it from sticking to the grill. Use an oil with a high smoke point such as peanut oil or vegetable oil.

Lay the meat on the barbecue and cook gently until brown. You should only need to turn it once.

If possible, cover the barbecue during cooking. Food cooks more evenly this way and you will end up with a more authentic barbecue flavour and less possibility of flare-ups. In addition, it is a more efficient way of cooking larger items such as whole chickens and meat joints.

Be vigilant
Flames jumping up and licking at your steaks and burgers may look tantalising but it is best avoided. If anything looks in danger of burning, remove it from the grill or place it on a higher shelf.

Rest
Most meats, whether steaks, burgers, chicken, sausages and so on, benefit from a short resting period prior to being served. It gives the meat time to relax, making it juicier and more tender. So, having removed the meat from the barbecue, transfer to a plate and serve after ten minutes or so.

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