Christmas is just around the corner and December has everything you need for the perfect Christmas roast. Check out our ‘In Season’ Pinterest board to see what takes your fancy.
What’s in season throughout December?
Fruit and Veg
Fish & seafood
Meat & game
A Clementine is a variety of mandarin orange. They tend to be very easy to peel, like a tangerine, but are almost always seedless and sweeter. They give a really good zingy taste to sauces or great in salads. They are a good Christmas staple.
Try poaching in a little sugar syrup with Christmassy flavours like star anise and cinnamon and use as a desert with ice cream.
Top tip #1: Grate the zest with the zest of a lemon over roasties to give a seasonal twist to your Sunday lunch.
Top tip #2: Clementine’s are easy to peal so are the perfect on the go snack.
Perfect partner: Cured meats, cheeses, fatty meat like duck or pork
Top tip #1: Cranberries can be really sharp so make sure you add lots of sugar when you boil them.
Make a Christmas aperitif by adding them to vodka – prick a hand full of cranberries, add to vodka with sugar and the zest and juice of a Clementine, leave for a couple of weeks, turning daily to mix, and hey presto the perfect Christmas drink or the base for a cocktail.
Dried cranberries work well in stuffing or salads
Top tip #2: Make your own sauce, it’s much tastier than shop bought – check out our
Perfect partner: Goose and turkey (obviously), fatty meats like duck and pork.
Check out our cranberry and clementine sauce recipe.
Pomegranates add a sweet sharpness, texture and colour to a salad.
Add to tequila for a punchy Christmas shot. Adds colour and texture to deserts.
Perfect partner: Duck, wintery salads, cheeses like mozzarella and blue.
Top tip #1: Slice in half and knock out the seed with the back of a spoon rather than trying to scoop them out.
Turkey is a similar meat to chicken and can be used all year round as a cheaper cut, but it can dry out when cooked. Buy the best quality you can afford to get the best flavour. Ask your butcher if your turkey has been hung as this will improve the flavour. Turkey used to be considered a game meat.
Top tip #1: Brine your turkey 24 hours before cooking it will help it to retain moisture.
Top tip #2: Leave to rest for half the time that you have cooked it, to make your meat tenderer.
Top tip #3: Get your butcher to remove the legs. Bone, stuff and roll the leg meat and cook with the crown to reduce cooking time.
Top tip #4: Cook the perfect turkey without drying it out by using a temperature probe. Stick into the thickest part of the bird and get to 68 oC.
Check out our ways of using up your turkey leftovers with our ‘One turkey, six dinners‘ blog post.
You can eat all of the squid after you have removed the guts and the beak. You can even use the ink to colour foods like pasta.
Top tip #1: Squid improves with freezing as it tenderises it.
Perfect partner: Goes with everything; great deep fired, simply seasoned, stir fired with tomatoes and olives, stuffed with sausage meat or crab and slow cook in a rich tomato sauce.
Top tip #2: Stop if from going chewy by either cooking it hot and quick or long and slow.
We think seasonality is really important for sustainability and great tasting food. Each month we put together a series of hints and tips, maybe a few recipes, focusing around what you should be cooking and eating in that month.
Check out November’s hints and tips.