Tag Archives: HOLIDAY

GORDON RAMSAY TURKEY AND GRAVY

This year, I will be cooking the turkey for Thanksgiving. I came across this recipe by grand master chef Gordon Ramsay. Even though this recipe is meant for Christmas, I think it will do just fine as a Thanksgiving recipe. It also comes with a recipe for gravy. I watched the video of him cooking the turkey multiple times and it looks divine. My family is super-excited!

For those of you who are interested in trying this recipe for Thanksgiving, here it is:

TURKEY:

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7. Meanwhile, prepare the herb butter. Put the butter into a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Add the olive oil and mix well. Add the lemon zest and juice, crushed garlic and chopped parsley. Mix well to combine.
  2. Remove the giblets from the turkey cavity. Season the cavity well with salt and pepper, then stuff with the onions, lemon, garlic halves and 2 bay leaves.
  3. With your hands, loosen the skin on the breast from both ends of the bird so that you will be able to stuff the flavoured butter underneath it, making sure you keep the skin intact. Repeat with the skin on the legs – from the lower side of the breast feel your way under the skin and out towards the leg, loosening the gap.
  4. Stuff half the butter mix into the opened spaces under the skin. From the outside of the skin, gently massage the butter around the breasts so that the meat is evenly covered. Finally, insert the rest of the bay leaves under the skin of the breasts.
  5. Place the bird in a large roasting tray, breast side up. Spread the rest of the butter all over the skin. Season well with salt and pepper, then drizzle with a little olive oil. (If preparing a day ahead, cover the turkey with foil and refrigerate at this stage.)
  6. Roast the turkey in the hot oven for 10–15 minutes. Take the tray out of the oven, baste the bird with the pan juices and lay the bacon rashers over the breast to keep it moist. Baste again. Lower the setting to 180°C/Gas 4 and cook for about 2 1⁄2 hours (calculating at 30 minutes per kg), basting occasionally.
  7. To test whether your turkey is cooked, insert a skewer into the thickest part of the leg and check that the juices are running clear, rather than pink. As oven temperatures and turkey shapes and sizes vary, it is crucial to check your turkey about 30 minutes before the calculated roasting time. If the juices are pink, roast for another 15 minutes and check again. Repeat as necessary until the turkey is cooked.
  8. Transfer the turkey to a warmed platter and remove the parson’s nose, wings and tips of the drumsticks; reserve these for the gravy. Leave the turkey to rest in a warm place for at least 45 minutes; make the gravy in the meantime. Remove the bay leaves from under the skin before carving. Serve the turkey with the piping hot gravy, stuffing and accompaniments.

GRAVY:

METHOD

  1. Once you’ve transferred the cooked turkey to a platter to rest, drain off most of the fat from the roasting tray and place on the hob.
  2. Roughly chop the bacon, add to the tray and fry for a few minutes. Chop the onions and lemon and add to the tray with 2 rosemary sprigs and the tomatoes. Cook for 1–2 minutes, then add the turkey wings, parson’s nose and drumstick tips and fry for a few more minutes.
  3. Pour in the cider and boil for a few minutes. Add the juices from the resting turkey and simmer to reduce the liquid by half. Pour in the stock, return to the boil, then reduce the heat slightly. Using a potato masher, crush the vegetables in the tray. Simmer for 15–20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until reduced again by a third. Take off the heat.
  4. Strain the gravy through a sieve into a saucepan, pressing down on the solids in the sieve with a ladle to extract as much of the flavourful juice as possible. Add a fresh sprig of rosemary to the pan, then turn off the heat and leave to infuse for a few minutes.
  5. Before serving, remove the rosemary and reheat the gravy. Coarsely crush the walnut pieces using a pestle and mortar and then tip into a warmed gravy jug. Pour the piping hot gravy on top and serve at once.

NEW FANTASY BOOK (CHAPTER 3)

I have reached the third chapter of my new fantasy book. Here, I plan to depict what kinds of holidays are celebrated in my fantasy world. I am thinking of basing them on the changing of each season. The spring holiday would resemble Easter, the summer holiday would be like the Fourth of July, the fall holiday would be like a mixture of Halloween and Thanksgiving, and the winter holiday would resemble Christmas. This chapter will give you a look at the summer holiday and how a small town celebrates it. Both at work and at home, I am called the Holiday Man because I always bring festivities to each holiday. So, I will have plenty of inspiration.

CHRISTMAS DINNER 2017!!!

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I had a Christmas dinner to remember this year! My family and I went to an all-you-can-eat buffet that served the best high-class food we had in a long time. I went to the buffet four times and a lot of the food I had I never had before. It was a serious culinary adventure! Among these new foods was the dark meat of a goose. It was so juicy and succulent that it relaxed me to the point in which I was mentally like play dough. The dark goose meat was so good that I effectively stripped the kitchen of all its dark goose meat. The light meat of the goose just tasted like pork tenderloin so it was nowhere near as special as the dark meat. I had caviar that smelled like the ocean but did not have the crunchy/nutty texture that the caviar I had weeks earlier. I had oysters and mussels, which were slimy, salty, and roughly tickled the back of my throat. The desserts were divine and included a raspberry torte that had the same relaxing effect the goose meat had. Overall, it was a great Christmas dinner that I did not want to end because it was too f***ing good!

A NAPA VALLEY CHRISTMAS

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My family and I are going to Napa Valley for Christmas this year. It will be a week of beautiful scenery, good food, rich culture, and flavorful wine. Because I don’t drink at all, I am all for tasting wine, but I will never swallow it. I wonder if it will snow up there and I hope it is mostly intact after the wildfire. Either way, it should be a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year.

FILM REVIEW: THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS

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Recently, I saw a film that I could really connect with, The Man Who Invented Christmas. It is about Charles Dickens when he wrote A Christmas Carol. The reason I could connect with this film so well is that Charles Dickens’ writing process was almost identical to mine. He drew inspiration from people in his life and from experiences he had. In addition, his characters had conversations with him and followed him wherever he went. Also, Charles Dickens also used vanity press publishers like I did with The Young Guardians. These factors pretty much mirror my own writing process so I felt a very personal connection with this film. Charles Dickens is famous for writing novels such as Oliver Twist and David Copperfield, but A Christmas Carol proved to be his ultimate legacy. Not only was A Christmas Carol one of the best selling books of all time, but it also became an integral part of modern Christmas to this day. A Christmas Carol is my all time favorite of Charles Dickens’ stories and it was fun to see how it was created. I would recommend this film to anyone who wants to look inside a man’s wonderful imagination and ignite the Christmas spirit in your heart.