Meat & Poultry

Christmas Gammon, or any other time you want!
Place the gammon, skin on, in a saucepan big enough to take the meat and cover with water. If you can't cover it fill as much as possible and turn it over half way throught the cooking time.

Add an orange, cut into quarters, 4 or 5 whole peppercorns, and any of the following - star anise, cinnamon stick, a few cloves

Calculate the boiling time at 20 minutes for each 500 gm.

Once you have brought the ham to the boil, turn it to simmer, put the lid on and cook for the calculated time.

Take the ham out of the pan and leave it to cool for 15 minutes. Please leave it that long or you will burn yourself!

Once it has cooled down line a large roasting tin with foil and heat the oven to 190 Fan.

Put the ham on a board and carefully cut the skin away, using a sharp knife and leaving as much fat behind as possible. Score the fat into a diamond pattern then put the meat I to the roasting tin. Brush all over with honey and roast for 10 minutes. Remove fro. The oven, turn it round (not over) and baste with more honey. Pop it back I. The oven for 15-20 minutes or till golden and bubbling.

Remove from the oven  and carve if eating hot. If for cold eating leave it to cool completely before putting in the fridge.

Left over turkey pie 

 This is always our post christmas meal and the only ingredients that are a must are cold turkey, something to provide the sauce and pastry, we prefer puff pastry but filo or shortcrust are an option. We put some cubed Turkey into an ovenproof dish and either sliced, softened leeks or chopped onions softened. Then add any or all of the following. Cubed cold ham, quartered button mushrooms, frozen peas, white sauce, tin of cream of mushroom soup, cold stuffing. Fill the dish to brimming and make a mound in the middle, it shrinks! Cover with pastry, egg wash or butter wash and cook in a medium hot oven till the pastry is golden. Serve hot or cold but never reheat.

1 chicken (3-1/2 to 4 pounds)
For the marinade:
1/4 cup grated coconut (fresh or dried)
6 cloves garlic, peeled and rough chopped
1 medium onion rough chopped
2 tsp lazy lemongrass
2 tsp lazy ginger
1/2 sp red chilli flakes
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoons salt
lime wedges for squeezing
Spatchcock the chicken. Make 2 deep slashes to the bone in each leg and thigh. Fold the wing tips back behind the wings. Place the bird in a non-reactive baking dish just large enough to hold it.
Make the marinade. Place the dried shredded coconut in a dry cast iron or stainless steel skillet (not nonstick) and cook it over medium heat until browned and fragrant, stirring with a wooden spoon to prevent scorching. Transfer the coconut to a bowl to cool.
Place the garlic, shallots, lemongrass, ginger, chillies, coriander, cumin, turmeric, and salt, puree the ingredients in a food processor. Again, add water as needed to obtain a thick but pourable paste. Spoon this mixture over the chicken, forcing it into the slits in the legs, turning the bird to coat well on both sides. Marinate the chicken for 1 to 2 hours in the refrigerator.
Set up your grill for direct grilling and preheat to medium. Brush and oil the grill grate.
Drain the chicken and arrange it on the grill grate bone side down. Grill until golden brown and cooked though, 15 to 20 minutes per side, turning half way through. Move the chicken as needed to dodge any flare-ups. To check for doneness: use an instant read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh but not touching the bone: the temperature should be about 170 degrees.
Alternatively, make a cut in the chicken meat where the thigh connects to the body: there should be no traces of red at the bone.
To serve, transfer the chicken, skin side up, to a serving plate. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing.
BBQ Coffee chicken
Take 2 chickens and spatchcock them. Make the rub as follows
Espresso Rub – enough for 2 full chickens
2 tablespoons ground dark roast coffee 2 teaspoons coarse salt (kosher or sea) 1 teaspoon pure chile powder 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon ground coriander 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Mix all together and rub on all sides of the chicken. Leave to absorb the flavours for 2-4 hours in the fridge.
Mocha Mop Sauce
1 cup cold brewed coffee  3/4 cup beer  2 tablespoons cocoa powder  1 teaspoon coarse salt (kosher or sea)
Mix all together in a bowl until the salt is dissolved.
When the BBQ is medium hot place the chickens skin side up with a drip tray underneath (scrape the coals to either side so there is room). Cook for 40-50 minutes, after 30 minutes use the mop sauce to baste. Turn the chickens over, baste with the sauce again and every 5 minutes till the chicken is cooked.

Pork pie

For the filling
For the pastry

Preparation method

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4
For the filling, place half of the pork shoulder and bacon into a food processor and pulse to a coarse mince.
Combine with the rest of the pork, bacon, sage, rosemary, nutmeg, allspice and anchovy essence (or 1-2 fresh salted anchovies, finely chopped, or two teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce), and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the pastry, sift the flour and salt and freshly ground black pepper into a bowl and set aside.
In a pan, heat the milk, water and lard together and gradually bring to a simmer, or until all the lard has melted.
Bring the milk mixture up the boil and then pour this onto the flour mixture. Mix well with a wooden spoon to create a firm dough.
Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead the dough quickly for a few minutes.
Roll the dough out flat, then press the dough into a pork pie tin, saving a quarter of the dough for the lid.
Spoon the meat mixture into the pastry-lined pork pie tin.
Roll out the remaining quarter of pastry so that it's slightly larger than the tin all round.
Brush the beaten egg yolk all over the pastry lid, then place the pastry on top of the meat mixture and press down the edges to seal.
Cut a small hole in the top of the pastry and transfer into the oven for 45 minutes to one hour, or until the pastry is golden-brown and the meat is completely cooked through.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin.
Lemon and potato chicken
Chicken pieces to feed the number of people you have.
4 oz (100g) new potatoes per person
1 lemon
1 bulb of garlic
Olive oil
Flat leaf parsley
Fresh thyme
white wine (approx 100ml for 4 people)
Chicken stock (same amount as the wine)
Heat the oven to 200C/Gas 6.
Cut the potatoes in half and put into the roasting tin with 1 tbsp olive oil, season and mix well. Finely chop the parsley and the thyme and add to the potatoes along with the garlic broken into cloves – no need to peel them (it is a fiddly job anyway!).
In a frying pan with a little olive oil, brown the chicken pieces then place them on top of the potatoes with the lemon cut into slices. Season and drizzle over the remaining oil, add the stock and the wine. Roast for 30 minutes or till the potatoes and the chicken are cooked. (This will be longer if you are using chicken on the bone, say about 45 minutes)
Serve with your favourite veggies or a green salad
BBQ ribs
This comes from This Morning, ITV’s daily show. I use individual ribs rather than a rack as they are often on offer in out local supermarket. I also substitute other vinegars if I don’t have cider vinegar.
Serves 4
Ingredients rack of pork ribs 1 onion grated 3 cloves garlic crushed 150ml tomato ketchup 100ml cider 3 tbs cider vinegar 2 tbs dark brown sugar 1 tbs soy sauce 1 tsp English mustard 1 tsp fennel seeds ground 1/2 tsp chilli flakes ground black pepper
1/2 red cabbage shredded 1 small red onion very finely sliced 1 carrots grated 1 apples grated 1/2 green chilli finely diced 2 tbs flat leaf parsley chopped 5 tbs mayonnaise juice 1/2 lemon 1tsp sugar salt and pepper
Method 1. Fry the onion and garlic in some oil for around 5 mins until softened, grind the fennel seeds and chilli in a pestle and mortar, add the other ingredients along with the spices and cook over a medium to high heat until reduced and thick.
2. Add the ribs to a large pan of salted water and bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 mins, drain and place on a rack sitting in a baking tray, brush with the glaze, pour some boiling water into the tray and bake in a pre-heated oven set at 190c for 1 hour.
3. Add the cabbage, onion, carrot, chilli, apple and parsley to a bowl and mix, add the mayonnaise, lemon juice and sugar, combine and season with salt and pepper.
Snake and Pygmy pie
Like the name? That was what Jackie used to call Steak & Kidney pie so time to add it to the list.
500g stewing or braising steak
1 pigs kidney
flour for dusting
liquid for cooking, this can be water, beer, wine, stock – your choice
salt and pepper
1 sheet of ready rolled puff pastry or shortcrust if you prefer.
This needs preparing the day before you want to eat it so you do need to be a bit organised.
Day 1
Put a couple of tablespoons of flour into a polythene bag with a pinch of salt and 2 or 3 pinches of ground black pepper. Cut the beef into  about 2 1/2 cm cubes and put into the bag with the flour and shake so all the meat is covered. If there is any flour left do the same with the kidney remembering to remove the white bits in the middle of the kidney or they will be really tough to eat.
Heat the oil in a frying pan, chop the onion and fry gently till opaque. Remove the onion and add a little more oil of required then fry the cubed meat, a little at a time. (About 5 or 6 pieces is good or the meat will boil and not fry, frying creates flavour and colour). When browned remove and drain on kitchen paper.
When all the meat is ‘sealed’ and draining add the liquid and stir well to incorporate all the bits stuck to the pan. This is where the flavour is and will also help to thicken the sauce.
Add the meat back to the pan and bring back to a gentle boil then transfer to an oven proof casserole or a slow cooker. The slow cooker will take 3-4 hours on high, 6-8 on low. The oven will need to be on 150C and will take 2-3 hours. Test the meat towards the end of the time to make sure it is tender, it all depends on the cut you buy.
When cooked set aside to cool the pop in the fridge till the next day.
Day 2
First make sure your pastry is defrosted if you use frozen. Get the cooked meat out and check the seasoning. I have always found it is not worth checking till this stage as it matures overnight. Add seasoning if it needs it, sometimes a dash of Worcestershire sauce is good here.
Set the oven to 190C. Put the meat into an ovenproof pie dish that the pastry will fit onto. Pop the pastry on top and brush with beaten egg. Cook for 45-50 minutes or till the pastry is golden and risen (if using shortcrust it will not rise).
Serve with mashed potatoes and veggies.
Brined, roast turkey
I adapted Nigella Lawson's brined turkey recipe for one years turkey and it was the best we have had. The breast didn't dry out at all, even when it was cold it was moist.
The adaptations I made were because I didn't have some things and I either had powdered spices instead of whole or I couldn't get the whole ones in time.
OK so you need to have a bucket large enough to take your turkey and you need somewhere cold to store it for 24-36 hours before cooking
The following is enough for a 12 lb turkey
turkey - remove any string, elastic bands etc
5 oz table salt
2 small oranges - satsumas etc, halved
1 lemon halved
1 lime halved
1 tbsp whole black peppercorns (I had these but 1 tbsp of ground black pepper would do
1 piece of thyme )
1 piece of rosemary ) 1tsp of dried of each wo9uld suffice
3 or 4 sage leaves )
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp allspice
2 tbsp mustard seeds
2 onions quartered - don't worry about peeling them
1 tbsp ground ginger
bunch of parsley - just the stalks
Put about 2 pints of cold water in the bottom of the bucket and add everything except the turkey, mix it all well with a wooden spoon then put in the turkey. Add enough cold water to cover the turkey. I found I needed to move the larger pieces of onion and the fruit so the turkey sat on the bottom, and I put a small plate on top to keep it under the brine mixture.
Put in a cool place for between 24 and 36 hours before cooking.
1 hour before it is due to go in the oven drain the turkey and let it stand to come to room temperature. Discard the brine liquid, it is no good for anything.
Preheat the oven to 200F, baste the turkey with oil before putting in then turn down to 180 and cook for 2 1/2 hours, make sure you test the thickest part of the leg to see that the juices run clear, or use a meat thermometer.
Take it out of the oven when cooked and allow to stand, with a foil tent over it, for 30-40 minutes before carving.
This is mainly for my husband as he loves Greek food, but it is a great flavour and good to cook on the BBQ.
4 Lamb steaks
2 lemons
1 tbsp salt
Leaves from 2 springs of thyme
250ml Greek yoghurt
2 red chillies de seeded
small bunch of coriander (cilantro)
1/2 tsp each of cardamom, cloves and turmeric
Rub the meat with the lemon, slat and thyme and leave for a couple of hours to tenderise the meat. Out the yoghurt, chillies, coriander and spices in a food processor and whizz to a paste. Pour the paste over the lamb, rub well in and then refrigerate overnight.
BBQ the meat for about 20 minutes, turning frequently. Finish with a squeeze of lemon ad serve with flat breads and tsatsiki.6 cloves of garlic (more if you like!)
1 bunch oregano
zest and juice of a lemon
6 tbsp olive oil
1 leg large lamb (the timings are for a 6lb 8 oz or 3 kg leg)
Heat the oven to 240C/gas 9. Cream the garlic with half the oregano, lemon zest and a pinch of salt. Either use a pestle and mortar or a blender.
Stab the meat all over with a sharp knife then rub the garlic mix all over and massage into the holes in the meat.
Roast for 20 minutes then turn the oven down to 180C/gas 4 for 1 1/2 hours. Chop the remaining oregano and sprinkle over potatoes before you roast them to serve with the meat.
Adjust the time of the cooking for the lower oven temperature for a smaller piece of lamb.1 chicken about 1 1/2 kg or 3 1/2 lb
150g/6 oz pack garlic and herb soft cheese
1 tbsp olive oil
Heat the oven to 190C/gas 5. Carefully loosen the skin of the chicken from the breast and the legs as much as possible. Push the cheese between the skin and the flesh, smooth well so it is evenly spread over the breast and legs as much as possible. Put into a roasting tin and drizzle with the oil then roast for 1 hr 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for 20 minutes before serving with your choice of veggies.
Lamb curry
This has to be one of the nicest Indian recipes I have had that is not in the slightest bit 'hot'

500 gm. good quality Lamb

For Marinade:

100 gm. or 4 tbs. thick, natural yoghurt

Salt to taste

2 level tsp. coriander powder

1 level tsp. turmeric powder

1/4 tsp. or to taste, chilli powder

1 tsp. sweet paprika powder for colour

2-3 green chillies, chopped (optional)

* 1 medium onion, peeled and grated or ground to a paste

*3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and grated or ground

*1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated or ground

2 tbs. ground almonds

*These 3 can be ground together in a blender.

For cooking:

2-3 tbs. ghee

1 tsp. cumin seeds

1/2 tsp. mint (optional)

2-3 large cardamoms

2 bay leaves

1-2 inch piece cinnamon stick

5-6 cloves

1 onion, peeled and thinly sliced/chopped

1/2 cup water

1/2 tsp. Garam Masala

A handful of chopped coriander leaves
Cut the lamb into pieces.
Mix all the marinade ingredients together in a bowl and add the meat, massage the marinade into the meat then cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours, over night if possible.
Heat the Ghee in a heavypan. Add the cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, cardamoms, bay leaves, cinnamon stick and cloves. When they start to splutter add the sliced onion and stir fry until golden brown. Add the lamb, marinade and water. cover with a lid and cook on a medium heat until the meat is tender. Stir from time to time to stop it catching.
Towards the end of the cooking time raise the heat to reduce the sauce, the ghee will separate. Taste and adjust the seasoning if required, add the garam masala and the coriander leaves and serve.Note: Spring onions are also know as scallions
BBQ Pork
This is a lovely low carb recipe.
4 pork steaks
bunch of spring onions thinly sliced
2 tbsp rice wine
6 tbsp soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, crushed
4 tsp brown sugar
Put the marinade ingredients in a large poly bag, add the pork, shake and refrigerate for at lest 1 hour and up to 24 hours.
Heat the grill (BBQ is good) and cook until the meat is sticky and glazed, turn after about 4 minutes, adding some of the marinade every now and then.
Remove the meat and leave it to rest while reducing the rest of the marinade to a sticky sauce.
Slice the pork, spoon over the sauce and sprinkle with the onions then serve.
Raan of lamb
I had a recipe for this some years ago and it is wonderful. It has taken a long time to find one that comes up with the same spices and instructions. This recipe is credited to the Bombay Palace Cookbook
5 lb Leg of lamb
3 Cloves garlic; mashed, AND
1 Piece fresh ginger, size of a walnut; minced
1 ts Salt
1 ts Turmeric
1/2 ts Ground cinnamon
1/2 ts Ground cardamom
1/2 ts Cayenne
1/4 ts Ground cloves
1/2 ts Saffron threads
3/4 c Yoghurt
2 tb Blanched almonds
1 tb Honey
Trim all fat from lamb, and, using a sharp knife, make slits all over the leg.

Combine the garlic/ginger paste and the salt with the cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, cayenne, cloves, and lemon juice to make a paste. If paste seems too thick, add more lemon juice. Spread the paste over the meat, forcing into each slit.

Soak the saffron threads in hot water for five minutes.
In a blender or food processor put the yoghurt, the blanched nuts and the saffron threads with their water, and puree. Coat the lamb with the puree. Drizzle honey over the meat.

It is best to marinate the meat for two days in the refrigerator. Cover loosely.

Preheat oven to 450 F and roast lamb in a covered baking dish (use foil wrap if necessary) for 1/2 hour. Reduce heat to 325 F and cook at 25 minutes to the pound, about 1-1/2 hours, until meat is tender, and it will be tender.
Serve with rice and peshwari naan, or plain naan
Serve the sauce/marinade in a jug separately.It is not easy to give quantities for this as I normally guess but I will do my best. This is not a 'blow your head off' curry but one full of flavour.

My basic curry
The one thing I have found is that it is so important to have freshly ground spices. I have a small electric grinder that is kept just for my curry spices and all I do is wipe it out after use. All my spices start whole and I buy small quantities so they don't develop 'off ' flavours. This is my spice mix.
2 tbsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp coriander seeds
a small piece of cinnamon stick
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tsp onion seeds (optional)
1 tsp mustard seed (optional)
Put the cumin and coriander (and any other seeds you use) but NOT the cinnamon, into a heavy based frying pan and gently heat until the aroma starts to release. Put everything, including the cinnamon, into a grinder and grind to a fine powder.

I use beef, chicken or lamb but it can be done with veggies as long as they are ones that hold their shape when cooked for a while.
This will feed 2
1 lb meat
1 onion sliced
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp ginger - I use ready prepared from a jar
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp sugar
salt and pepper
Fry the onions and garlic gently in the oil for 5 minutes. Add the cubed meat and fry gently for 3 minutes, turning the meat regularly. Add the ground spices and fry for a further 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the tomato puree and stir well. Add the sugar and seasoning (plenty of pepper). Transfer to a casserole and cook for 1 to 3 hours depending on the meat.
Serve with plain boiled rice, naan bread and poppadoms. A dollop of yogurt on top finishes it off.

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