From warm appetizers to turkey, and beef stew to chocolate pie – whatever festive feast you're cooking this Christmas, eat, drink and be merry with the festive recipes of Team F&S.
"There’s nothing more Christmas than a turkey! I made this last year on Christmas eve, and must say, this was a winner. Make it extra festive with homemade mushroom cream sauce and roasted chicory."
Turkey Roulade (cfr. Jeroen Meus) by our Content Manager, Elise:
Ingredients for 4 persons:
6 large slices of turkey fillets (about 0,5cm thick), 24 thin slices of bacon, 500g mixed minced meat, 1 apple, 80g small cranberries (frozen), Thyme, 1 egg, 40g breadcrumbs, Olive oil, Butter, Pepper & salt
Peel the apple and cut the fruit into wedges and remove the (small) core. Cut it into small cubes (0,5cm). Heat some butter in a pan over a medium heat. Add the apple cubes and stir. Let the fruit stew for a few minutes and set the pan aside (do not make it into a pulp). Preheat the oven to 180°C. Put the mixed minced meat in a mixing bowl. Add the egg and breadcrumbs. Mix everything with clean hands to a smooth meat mixture. Mix the stewed apple pieces into the meat. Do the same with the small (frozen) cranberries. Zip the leaves from the fresh thyme and chop the herb as finely as possible. Stir the chips into the fill-ing for the Christmas roulade. Place the turkey fillets one by one between two sheets of aluminium foil. Pound them evenly without using brute force. Use a meat pusher or a small cooking pot with 2 handles. Cover your work surface with two sheets of aluminium foil. Lay the sheets of foil partially over each other, so that you get a large surface. Arrange the bacon vertically and in two identical rows on the foil. Do it like roof tiles, so that all slices of bacon partly overlap each other. Then arrange the turkey fillet slices on top of the bacon in the same way. Arrange the turkey slices in the center of the bacon ‘field’ so that you can see the edges of bacon. Spoon the ground beef mixture into the center of the turkey bacon layer. Knead the meat into a smooth thick sausage, lying horizontally over the turkey slices. Grab the sheet of aluminium foil at the bottom and fold it over the meat mixture. Loosen the foil from the meat, making sure that the turkey fillets and bacon stick tightly to the meat filling. Continue to roll until the minced meat filling is wrapped around with turkey and bacon. Then stretch the sheet of aluminium foil tightly around the entire roulade and also seal the sides hermetically. Place the tightly wrapped roulade in an oven dish and slide it into the hot oven at 180°C. Bake the meat for 45 minutes. Take the roulade out of the oven and keep it warm. Carefully remove the aluminium foil and brush with a layer of olive oil. Place the meat in the oven for a second baking and let the bacon coat color for another 15 minutes.
"It’s pure heartwarming comfort food and I love a big tray in the middle of the table to share."
The Meatloaf with sweet roasted fennel, crispy smoked bacon, herbs & juices (cfr. Jamie Oliver) of Marketing Lead, Elle
4 medium bulbs of fennel, Olive oil, 2 onions, 2 carrots, ½ a bunch of fresh sage (15g), ½ a bunch of fresh rosemary (15g), 1 x 125 g ball of mozzarella cheese, 200 g sourdough breadcrumbs, 1 kg higher-welfare minced pork, 1 kg minced beef, 2 teaspoons wholegrain mustard, 2 large free-range eggs, 12 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon, 500 ml organic chicken stock, 2 tablespoons quality blackcurrant jam, 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomato purée
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Trim each fennel bulb and chop into eight wedges, then place in a large roasting tray, drizzle with oil, season with sea salt and black pepper and roast for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, peel and dice the onions and carrots, place in a large pan with 1 tablespoon of oil on a medium-low heat and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pick the herb leaves, finely chop half of them and add to the veg pan, saving the rest for later. Leave the veg to cool completely, then tear in the mozzarella and add the breadcrumbs, minced meat, mustard, eggs, and a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Scrunch and mix well, then shape into a loaf. Make a space in the middle of the fennel tray and sit the meatloaf in the centre. Criss-cross the smoky bacon over the meatloaf, drizzle with a little oil, then cover the tray with tin foil. Roast for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and discard the foil. Mix the chicken stock, jam and tomato purée together in a jug until smooth, then pour into the tray. Toss the reserved herbs with a little oil and scatter into the tray, then return to the oven for a final 45 minutes, or until cooked through. If the juices need thickening at this stage, simply put the tray on the hob to reduce for a few minutes, until they’re the consistency of your liking, skimming away any fat from the surface, if needed. Serve the meatloaf, sweet fennel and juices with mash and seasonal greens.
"It’s my all time favourite dessert for colder days. It’s sweet and crunchy with a light and fluffy icing (kinda like snow)."
Carrot and Walnut Cake (cfr. Ottolenghi) by our Location Manager Alfons, Mara:
160g plain flour, ½ tsp baking powder, ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, ¼ tsp ground cloves, 1 large free-range egg, 1 free-range egg yolk, 200g sunflower oil, 270g caster sugar, 50g walnuts, chopped, 50g desiccated coconut, 135g carrot, roughly grated, 2 free-range egg whites, a pinch of salt.
Icing: 175g cream cheese, at room temperature , 70g unsalted butter, 35g icing sugar, 25g honey, 30g walnuts, chopped and lightly toasted
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease a 20cm springform cake tin and line the base and sides with baking parchment. Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and spices. Lightly whisk the whole egg with the egg yolk. Put the sunflower oil and caster sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the beater attachment and beat for about a minute on a medium speed. On a low speed, slowly add the beaten egg. Mix in the walnuts, coconut and carrot and then the sifted dry ingredients. Don’t over mix. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Wash and dry the mixer bowl, making sure it is totally clean, then put the egg whites and salt in it and whisk on a high speed until firm peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the carrot mixture in 3 additions, being careful not to over mix. Streaks of white in the mixture are okay. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake for approximately 1 hour; it could take longer. A skewer inserted in the centre should come out dry. If the cake starts getting dark before the centre is cooked through, cover it with foil. Let the cake cool completely and then remove from the tin. To make the icing, beat the cream cheese in a mixer until light and smooth. Remove from the mixer. Beat the butter, icing sugar and honey in the mixer until light and airy. Fold together the cheese and butter mixes. Spread waves of icing on top of the cake and sprinkle with the nuts.