Christmas Dinner!

12/26/2015 09:47:00 PM

Flaming pudding

Merry Christmas! Phew, am I glad that it's Boxing Day! I've been super chill today, eating mince pies and pottering about the house. Very excited for a lazy week off from work! We had the big turkey dinner last night at my folks' house, and here's what I cooked.

Christmas Dinner for Five

Red Cabbage
Vanilla-Bean Crème Anglaise

If you look at the bottom of this post, I've compiled a list of all the different Christmas dinners I've made, right from the first one in 2005 as part of the Sarah Discovers How to Eat project up until now. Looking back, it seems each year I jettison side dishes that we don't love (bread sauce, stuffing, any carb that isn't roast potatoes, any vegetable side that isn't red cabbage) until we get to what's most important - roast turkey, roast potatoes, red cabbage and Christmas pudding with custard. Simple and perfect!

We went to mum and dad's in the afternoon and had some Hills BBQ takeaway for lunch - char siu and minced chicken salted fish fried rice for my folks, beef on fried noodles for Sandra, and roast duck and crispy roast pork on rice for me. Woo.

Hills BBQ takeaway

After opening presents (YAY, presents!), I started cooking. After many years of turkey-roasting, Gordon Ramsay's Christmas turkey has firmly established itself as my favourite! You can find the recipes for the turkey and gravy in my Christmas 2012 post, so here's just a quick overview. It's always turned out really well for me, and is pretty simple to make! No need for brining or flipping the bird (heh), Gordon's turkey is smeared with a lemony herby butter, and the cavity filled with garlic, onions and lemon. (We bought the turkey, a lovely free-range bird, from Rendinas Butchery).

Buttered Breasts

The breast is also covered with bacon to protect it during roasting and add extra flavour. Peter Bouchier dry-cured streaky bacon for the win!

Bacon blanket

While the turkey was in the oven, it was time for a mince pie break! Dad bought mince pies from a couple of different places this year - the flat one is from Le Paul Patisserie (409 Whitehorse Road, Balwyn, VIC 3103) and the one with the adorable teddy bear cutout is from Harvest Bakery (255A Belmore Road, Balwyn North, VIC 3104). Both delicious!

Mince Pies

And here's the roasted turkey! I removed the bacon blanket and snipped off the wing tips (both for the gravy), and covered the turkey in a double layer of foil to rest.

Bronzed turkey

From here, all that was left to be done was to roast the potatoes, make the red cabbage (thank-you Sandra for doing this!) and make the gravy. So much flavour in that gravy! Note to self - this year's gravy was a little bitter, so next year I gotta remember not to put the lemons in it.

Good gravy

And here's the turkey! Ta-dah!


Then we could pop the Champagne and it was time to eat!

James Bond's Champagne of choice

My carving skills aren't great, but they sure have improved over the years!

Turkey pieces

Sides: roast potatoes, red cabbage, cranberry relish, Dijon mustard, gravy

Potatoes, roasted in goosefat. Best.

Perfect roast potatoes

And dessert was, of course, Christmas pudding. I made Nigella's Ultimate Christmas Pudding (which is my favourite of all the Christmas puddings I've ever made). I know you're supposed to make pudding weeks or months in advance, but I only actually made it the day before, after having steeped the fruits in Pedro Ximinez for a few days. It was still good! Very good! (Perhaps next year I'll be more organised). We flambéed it using Bacardi 151 (75.5% alcohol!), which gave it a lovely bright blue flame!

Nigella's Ultimate Christmas Pudding

And I served it with vanilla bean custard, which I made while we were recovering from eating all that turkey. I'm very proud of myself that I can make custard without a recipe, woohoo.

All dat custard

Merry Christmas everybody!

Previous Christmas dinners:

You Might Also Like


  1. Yumm!! It looks so good and I love the bacon wrapped turkey. We did something like this for Thanksgiving and it was a hit. Love the idea of the PX soaked fruit too! :D Happy Holidays!!

  2. Lovely meal - the turkey looks delicious. Merry Christmas!



My email address is sarahcooks [at] hotmail [dot] com.