by Laura Waters, Snowdon House Gourmet & Gifts –
I love a traditional Christmas
dinner as I find it the easiest dinner to cook. I can prepare so much ahead of time so I can enjoy the meal and the day. I make the stuffing the day before, wrap it in cheesecloth and cover it in the fridge. Then when I stuff the turkey I just put the cheesecloth in the turkey. It makes the stuffing so much easier to get out of the turkey later. If you have gluten-free issues to deal with, cook your stuffing separately and fill your bird’s cavity with fresh herbs and butter and make your gravy with cornstarch. You can cook your potatoes the day before, mash them and then just reheat them slowly in the oven. My twice-baked sweet potato recipe is much better if it sits overnight in the fridge and then is warmed the next day.
I always seem to dirty every dish in the house when I cook; the cleanup crew reminds me of that all the time!
Fresh locally grown turkey
Sautéed sliced Brussels sprouts with mushrooms and onions
Twice baked sweet potatoes,
Mashed potatoes with garden herb butter (a blend of sage, rosemary and oregano blended and mixed with butter), gives mashed potatoes a very different flavour.
Croissants with herb butter
Stuffing (the beautiful thing about living on the coast is herbs are still available in the garden in December, so I will include fresh rosemary, oregano and sage in my stuffing along with the onions, bread crumbs and butter
Cranberry sauce: fresh Cranberries, the juice of one orange and sugar to taste.
Tomato and pomegranate salad
Traditional plum pudding with hot butter rum sauce. I have used Grandma’s recipe for years. It must be at least 75 years old, takes a while to make and is very rich but you only need a mouthful. I usually make this early in the fall and freeze it.
A tray of shortbread and Christmas cake
So now that I have cooked Christmas dinner and I have all these leftovers, what can I do?
I love a hot turkey sandwich the next day, and always put on a pot of soup. I freeze some turkey in a ziplock bag with gravy.
Try an eggs benedict with turkey (minus the gravy).
How about trying some savoury waffles with turkey, gravy and topped with cranberry sauce?
I have just tried a new recipe that uses the leftover croissants as the crust and is full of a layer of mashed potatoes covered in turkey with gravy and then garnished with cranberries.
You will need:
10″ round pie plate
2 leftover croissants
1½ cup mashed potatoes (at room temperature)
2 cups turkey and gravy
¼ cup stuffing
Preheat oven to 325°
Break croissants up and use them to cover the sides and bottom of the pie plate. Put in the oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
On the stovetop, warm your leftover gravy and turkey.
Place a layer of mashed potatoes over the croissant crust. It doesn’t have to be exactly even. Leave about a ¼ cup for the topping. Take the warm turkey and gravy and cover the potatoes. Top with scoops (see picture) of mashed potatoes and bake for 10 minutes till pie is warmed through. Serve on individual plates garnished with cranberry sauce.