I used to think I was destined for a life of dry and tough turkey – until I discovered the secret powers of brining. Now I brine my turkey overnight before cooking it I've revealed a whole new world of juicy, flavoursome Christmas dinners.
The only tricky bit about brining a turkey is finding a container big enough to do it in. Last Christmas I came up with the notion of pouring the brine into a large, clean plastic bag (I used a rubbish bag), adding the turkey, sealing the bag and then storing it overnight in a large chilly bin full of ice. It also helps solve the dilemma of how to fit the turkey into a fridge that's already packed to the gunwales with vital ingredients for the next day's feast!
This year my Roast Turkey with Cider Gravy is extra delicious because the flavour of the cider permeates the meat, giving it a lovely fragrant fruitiness. I stuff the neck end with some good-quality pork and fennel sausages and make a stuffing that I either put inside the bird or, if I want it to cook quickly, roast separately. For the full turkey recipe click here. I'll post the stuffing recipe tomorrow, so keep an eye out!
Countdown to Christmas dinner
Each day for the next seven days I'll be posting a new recipe from my Christmas Day menu, so check back here each day. To be notified by email when I've posted a new blog, click on the RSS Feed tab on the right of this page. Or if you'd prefer you can like my Facebook page or follow me on Twitter to be the first to hear when each new recipe goes live. On the last day I'll post a Menu Planner to help you prep ahead as much as possible and make your Christmas Day a stress-free zone.
Here's my Christmas Day menu so far:
Bella's Pink Fizz
The main event:
Bacon, Herb and Hazelnut Stuffing