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to think christmas dinner is just a roast....

(99 Posts)
AmberSocks Wed 28-Nov-12 18:24:36

which are pretty rank anyway.

I'm not keen on English food,most of it is really bland,a Christmas dinner is basically just boiled veg and some chicken,gravy isn't particularly interesting.

I don't get the big deal?

livingfortoday Wed 28-Nov-12 18:39:26

You mustn't be able to cook a good roast then simple flavours but still tasty done correctly.

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:40:03

IMO christmas dinner should be all your favourite parts of a roast, if you don't like roasts then your christmas dinner should be your favourite celebrate type of dinner.

My christmas dinner is

Beef and a shoulder of pork
roast potatoes in goose fat
pigs in blankets
caulli cheese
cranberry, apple and horse raddish sauce
proper gravy not bisto
yorkshire puddings
selection of oast veg incl sweet potato, squash, peppers, tomatoes, courgette, carrots, parsnips.

And its luusshh but you should have your favourites!

LifeIsBetterInFlipFlops Wed 28-Nov-12 18:40:36

I love Christmas lunch for all the reasons greylady said.

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:40:49

Google Jamie olivers christmas gravy, looks lush!

DragonMamma Wed 28-Nov-12 18:41:34


It's my favourite meal of the year, ours tastes amazing and anything other than bland. We have a turkey crown which we brine a la Nigella and a rib of beef with all the trimmings plus an amazing cauli and broccoli cheese. And we have proper gravy all year anyway but it always tastes that bit nicer on Christmas day.

It's the gravy that makes it, how people have bisto on their Christmas dinner is beyond me. I'd weep at the table.

MmeLinDude Wed 28-Nov-12 18:41:34

That's the recipe I use.

gordyslovesheep Wed 28-Nov-12 18:42:02

yeh I have

Roast Chicken
roast spuds
mixed veg
pigs in blankets
bread sauce (all for me grin )

it's yummy

racingheart Wed 28-Nov-12 18:42:46

You're allowed to make the flavours big. Blitz garlic, fresh chilli, olive oil, fresh herbs and lemon zest together in blender then rub all over the surface of the turkey with plenty of salt and pepper. Stuff the turkey with a spiced stuffing. Buy herby chipolatas and wrap them in maple smoked streaky bacon. Roast the parnips with cumin or caraway seeds and potatoes with garlic and chilli flakes, sprouts with chestnuts and smoky bacon or pancetta, baby carrots in mustard and honey. And so on.

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:42:53

Mmm it always looks nice, I really should try it.

Rindercella Wed 28-Nov-12 18:43:44

I was about to say YANBU, but reading further I absolutely have to disagree with it being bland. If done properly, any roast dinner can be delicious; Christmas dinner especially so as it should bring together everything people love to eat on one plate!

Since I started cooking turkey though I have gone off it (ugh to the huge gaping pores left from the feathers <shudder>), so now I do a capon. Last year, because we had 13 people, I cooked a leg of pork too. It was all lovely!

I do remember once, years ago, my then boyfriend coming over from Italy to stay over Christmas. He couldn't get enough of white sliced bread and that's all he stuffed himself with on Christmas Day! I guess that's what Christmas should be about - over indulging in all that you love, regardless of what it is.

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:44:42

Oh there is a lush Haiti roast chicken recipe, its a levi roots one with plaintain and tomato stuffing and a lime breadcrumb thingy under the skin. It's what they have for christmas over there is that sounds more down your street?

DontmindifIdo Wed 28-Nov-12 18:48:09

Carrots and parsnips are best when roasted - with the exception of doing carrot and swede mash (with chinese 5 spice and industrial quantities of butter). You are right, over boiled veg is vile, so don't do it. And often stuff if boiled for far too long.

IMO turkey is one of those meats that you can taste how much you've spent, cheap turkey meat is rank and tasteless - if you can't afford to buy good turkey, just don't bother and have something else. Plus most people seem to cook it for about 2hours longer than they need too so it's often dry.

If you do it yourself, it's easy enough, just work backworks from what time you want everything on the table and don't be tempted to put veg on early, so overcooking it all.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Wed 28-Nov-12 18:50:40

You are clearly not a very good cook wink

Seriously though - well done on having such a sophisticated palate smile

Rindercella Wed 28-Nov-12 18:52:05

Haitian roast chicken with 2 stuffings (just pulled out his cookbook as my lovely sil was on his cookery show a few years ago)? That sounds bloody lovely!

bedmonster Wed 28-Nov-12 18:52:41

Well don't take it the wrong way but it sounds like its your cooking that's the problem.
Our sprouts are cooked with lemons, garlic, pancetta, white wine. The Cauli cheese is heavy on the parmesan, as are the parsnips. Yummy free range sausages and streaky Bacon, home made yorkies and gravy as always, never bought a tub of bisto in my life, that stuff stinks bad! Spiced cabbage - and the best rib of beef, well aged and beautifully marbled. None of its bland, nothing is boiled and we definitely dont have a dry chicken. No wonder you don't want it if that's what you're expecting!

MsVestibule Wed 28-Nov-12 18:55:38

OK, the closest I come to homemade gravy is by using the cooking water from the veg and the juices from the roast, mixed in with a few teaspoons of Bisto. I would love to make real gravy, though - any foolproof recipes from anybody?

Yes, I know I could Google one, but I'd like one that's tried and tested by RL people. Please.

And OP, YAsooooooBU. Have you been brought up up to eat 'British' food? If so, which traditional British dishes aren't offensive to your robust palate? I bloody love roast dinners and mine are fantastic <not so stealth boast>. How can you describe sprouts and cranberry sauce as bland???

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:57:23

Rindercella I freeze framed that whole part when he done it on telly to write it down bit by bit. Still haven't tried it but I so want to it looks proper lush.

InNeedOfBrandy Wed 28-Nov-12 18:58:12

Oh yes don't forget the red cabbage with apple and raisens mmmmm

OwedToAutumn Wed 28-Nov-12 18:58:47

If you want a curry, then have a curry.

worsestershiresauce Wed 28-Nov-12 19:05:59

Turkey is a bland meat, which is where the skill off the chef comes in. I think you need to revisit your xmas dinner recipes. Any meal can be bland and uninteresting if badly cooked. The 'posh' curry house near me serves bland food, and it is a CURRY house!!!

What are you calling traditional British food btw? This is a country known for game, amazing puddings and the like. Game is usually cooked with gutsy flavours - red wine, juniper, cranberry etc. Bland? Hardly.

Pandemoniaa Wed 28-Nov-12 19:08:19

If a traditional roast Christmas meal isn't big enough for your tastebuds then don't have one. To paraphrase - "your stomach, your dinner".

bedmonster Wed 28-Nov-12 19:09:36

MV, skim off the fat from the top of your juices. The clear stuff, not the cloudy stuff. You can add a small spoon of flour now. Bubble it up on the hob. You can now add some stock, wine and mustard in whichever combination you fancy. Usually I prefer the just the stock as the main flavour with a slug of wine and.spoon of English mustard. Bring to s simmer and reduce to desired consistency. Then add back in extra juices from your meat which will be resting. Ditch the bisto, you will never look back!!!

CarlingBlackMabel Wed 28-Nov-12 19:11:04

Spiced red cabbage, home-made cranberry, chipolatas, stuffing, veg cooked in different ways with chestnuts, lardons etc, proper robust gravy, no a christmas dinner does not need to be bland at all.

But what do you like, OP?

MmeLinDude Wed 28-Nov-12 19:12:43

Similar to Bedmonster - put the roast aside while you make the gravy, wrapped in tin foil. A roast should be rested for 20 mins before serving so you have plenty of time.

TricksyLaBOOshh Wed 28-Nov-12 19:17:13

And braised red cabbage...mmm

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