This year my family celebrated Christmas early as everybody was going to be in different places on Christmas day. It was such a happy evening with everybody together in a festive mood. The grandchildren all got on well and were very excited bringing their special energy to the dinner.
My family is very insistent that Christmas has to be celebrated in the traditional way. A traditional Christmas dinner is super important with turkey at the top of the list!
I found a beautiful organic, free range turkey at Zac’s , our local butcher in Bermagui, who also had a delicious ham.
I made the a classic Waldorf salad, some roast potatoes and for desert Monte Bianco with its mounds of chestnut pure, whipped cream and meringues.
Griffin giving the Monte Bianco the final touches.
With drinks before dinner I served crostini, some with my chicken liver paté, others with home-made gravlax. Combined with the excitement of grandchildren opening presents they were a wonderful start to a memorable Christmas.
My beautiful grandchildren in front of the Christmas tree.
Here is my classic recipe for turkey with stuffing.
• cooking time, calculate for a stuffed turkey 30 minutes per kilo of bird
• not stuffed, 20 minutes per kilo
• pre heat oven 160˙
• 1 organic turkey 6 kg ( we were 13 people including children)
• for the stuffing:
• 1 large Spanish onion finely sliced
• 2 carrots dices
• heart of celery finely sliced
• 300 gr whole, peeled chestnuts
• 250 gr organic chicken livers
• fresh rosemary and sage
• 10-12 slices of wholewheat bred cut into cubes
• 3-4 garlic cloves sliced
• in a little butter and oil gently fry the vegetables adding the herbs
• now add the livers and cook just for a few minutes
• add salt and pepper to taste
• put the bread in a bowl, mix in the chestnuts and the liver mixture
• dry the turkey inside and out
• stuff the neck part and the main cavity with the stuffing
• to keep the stuffing in the neck part sew the skin to the body
• in a large oven pan put some fresh rosemary to rest the bird on
• add more rosemary between the legs and push the wings under the bird
• heat 150 ml sunflower oil in a small pan to very hot
• now very carefully drizzle it over the whole turkey
• the skin will shrivel sealing in the moisture of the bird for cooking
• cover the turkey with the ham skin if you have one and aluminium foil
• bake in pre heated oven for the calculated time
• every 30 minutes, pour some oloroso ( medium sweet ) sherry over the bird
• you will need one bottle, maybe more.
• the sherry will combine with the pan juices to make a delicious gravy
• remove the ham skin and the alu foil for the last hour, so the bird will colour