Dad’s only request for Christmas Day lunch was a hot roast and as Dad was always in charge of cooking our Sunday roast dinners growing up, I’m feeling the pressure. But, I have a secret weapon – Duck fat.
Duck fat has a high smoke point, which means you can cook it at a very high temperatures without it smoking or adopting an off flavour. Perfect for making the best crispy roast potatoes.
Invite Duck fat in to your life. With it’s unsurpassed flavour, high smoke point and percentage of mono-saturated fat (these can help lower levels of blood cholesterol) and lower percentage of saturated fats than butter, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it! In moderation…
Christmas lunch was Kurobuta baked ham with a maple clove glaze; Roast Turkey breast with sage and onion stuffing; Brussels sprouts with peas, mint and crispy pancetta; Crispy potatoes and vegetables roasted in Duck fat and Turkey gravy.
Why is the ham square in this picture? Ask Dad, that’s the way he cuts it to go with the grain of the meat. This makes sense, but no more right angled meat please Dad.
There’s only a small group of us for Christmas lunch and as we’re away from home Mum and I cooked a Turkey breast or buffet Turkey – Turkey without the arms and legs.
I made some stuffing balls with the left over sage and onion turkey stuffing – this way no one misses out.
The brussels sprouts with mint and pancetta had to be padded out with some peas because they’re almost impossible to get this time of year (and I want to make sure there are some left over for bubble and speak).
The only reasoning behind the purple carrots is because I like the colour, especially their gorgeous yellow and purple inking pattern when you cut them in half (and they’re high in powerful antioxidents). They were in the roasting tray with my parsnips which have been blushed a little purple.
Vegetables roasted in duck fat
Serves: 8; Prep time; 10 minutes; Cook time: 50 minutes
1.5kg desiree or sebago potatoes, peeled
60g Duck fat
60ml vegetable oil
8 carrots, halved lengthways
8 pickling onions, halved
8 parsnips, halved lengthways
4 sprigs rosemary
– Preheat oven to 220’C. Halve your potatoes and place in a large saucepan of salted boiling water. Bring to the boil and cook for 10 minutes or until just tender. Drain, return to pan, cover and shake vigorously to roughen up the edges.
– Place Duck fat and oil in large roasting pan and heat over high heat until starting to smoke. Carefully add potatoes and remaining ingredients, toss to coat and season with salt and pepper. Roast, turning halfway, for 40 minutes or until potatoes are crisp and golden, and remaining vegetables are tender.
Sage and onion stuffing (and stuffing balls)
Prep time; 20 minutes; Cook time: 10 minutes
4 bacon rashers, ring removed, finely chopped
1 brown onion, halved, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups fresh breadcrumbs (made from day-old bread)
1/2 cup walnut halves, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dried apricots (re-hydrated slightly in boiling water for a few minutes)
1 Tbsp finely shredded fresh sage
1 egg, lightly whisked
– Melt butter in a frying pan over medium-high heat until foaming. Add bacon, onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Transfer to a heatproof bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, walnuts, apricot, sage and egg and stir until well combined. Season with salt and pepper.
Once I’ve stuffed the Turkey, I use the leftover stuffing mix for stuffing balls; Lightly spray and mini-muffin tin with cooking oil. Roll a dessert spoon of the stuffing the mixture into small balls and place in the tins. Bake for 10 minutes with the Turkey or until they start to golden.