Thursday, 15 December 2011

Who does it for you?

Butter Fingers.
As the Christmas holiday approaches we all get ready to enjoy the feast and to join in with the booze driven frolics. Christmas like my birthday is a time for fun. First of all I should say, "I prefer breasts to legs."  For as long as I can remember, I have always been that way.

We each have our preferences, for some its large and for others its small. This year, I have to admit I have been confronted by a bird with the biggest pair I've ever seen. I started by smothering the breasts all over with butter and then gently kneading the butter into the flesh. Once I have finished with the butter,  its usually time to gently prick the skin and to lightly score the breast and leg skin in a criss-cross pattern.

One plum or two?

Now its time to get down to the stuffing. Some people prefer more than one stuffing, I'm in the double stuffing school myself. I find it best if I stuff it up between the thighs as far as it will go.

At this point its also time to choose whether to introduce a couple of plums, which can be removed later.  I have also found that tying the legs together helps to keep the inside much more moist. Later you can loosen the string and ease out the legs a little.  

Drizzle Fingers.
Sometimes you may wish to drizzle a little through your fingers onto the skin. At the end, leave to rest for at least 30 mins. When kept loosely covered whilst giving time to rest, the bird will not go cold to soon. All birds will have the same sort of conformation it’s just down to what size they are.

I have my own little indicator at the ready for when the preparations are complete, when it pops up I'm ready to start. So if you're wondering how long will it take after you first put it in?

For Chicken. I calculate a cooking time of 40 minutes per kilo gram of meat at 375ºF (190ºC) Gas Mark 5.

For Turkey. I calculate a cooking time of 20 minutes per kg then add another 70 minutes cooking time at the end at 375ºF (190ºC) Gas Mark 5.

For Goose. Cook for 10 mins at 240C Gas Mark 9, then reduce to 375ºF (190ºC) Gas Mark 5. Then cook for 30 mins per kg plus 30 mins resting.

When it comes down to Fanny, Nigella or Delia - who does it for you?


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