Sunday, 21 December 2014


A wonderful accompaniment to roast turkey at Christmas, or roast chicken at any time of the year is a really tasty stuffing and I like to roll mine into balls as they cook quicker and you can make them a bit crunchy.

Stuffing Balls

200g  sausagemeat
dried/ fresh fruit

Put the sausagemeat into a large bowl.
Add about 4 tablespoons of breadcrumbs and 1-2 tablespoons of oatbran if you have it.
Finely chop some fresh parsley or sage and add it to the mixture.
If you wish, you can add some fresh apple or dried apricots.
At Christmas it is good to add chopped chestnuts or fresh cranberries.

Squish the mixture together with your hands and roll into balls.
Place on a baking tray and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes at 180.

Christmas truffles

Christmas Truffles

100g dark chocolate
100g cake or biscuits
50g white chocolate
holly decorations

1.  Melt the dark chocolate in a bowl over hot water.
2.  Crush the cake or biscuits into crumbs, then mix into the melted chocolate.
3.  Take a walnut sized piece of the mixture and shape into a ball. continue until all the mixture is used.
4.  Melt the white chocolate in a bowl over hot water.
5.  Drizzle a teaspoonful on each truffle and decorate with sugar holly berries and leaves.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Christmas Ham

The Christmas tree is decorated and hung with baubles and trinkets.  Christmas is getting ever closer and the excitement in the air is palpable.

At this time of year it is good to get a piece of gammon and cook it.  It is delicious hot with mashed potato, carrots, pease pudding and parsley sauce and it is scrumptious cold with salad, pickles and bread.

Baked Ham
1 boneless joint of unsmoked gammon
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp cloves   
1 tin of pineapple pieces in juice

Large saucepan
Roasting tin
Carving knife

1.   Put the gammon is a large saucepan, cover with water and then drain off the water.  Cover with water again, place over a high heat and bring to the boil. Drain off the water, cover with fresh water again and bring to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer for 2 hours.
2.   After 2 hours, turn off the heat and remove the meat from the boiling water. Place the meat in a roasting tin and carefully remove the rind with a sharp knife. Leave some of the fat on the meat for flavour. Score the fat with the knife, making a diamond pattern. Push a clove into each diamond. Sprinkle the top liberally with brown sugar, pressing it on with your hands if you think it necessary. Drizzle  a tablespoon or two of pineapple juice over the meat and put it in the oven for about 30 minutes.
3.   Remove from the oven and put the meat on a plate, cover  with foil and leave to rest for 20 minutes before carving.  Pour the sweet, sticky sauce into a jug.