I’m A Proper Turkey

15 Dec

It’s Christmas! And look it’s even snowing…

But you know what that means? An orgy of cooking, baking and eating. And I intend to throw myself into that orgy fully.
So over the next couple of weeks expect posts about ruined roulades, stupid stollen and buggered up beef joints.

Look – I even own this:
How to cook Christmas written by the goddess herself Nigella. I have tried two recipes from this book, firstly the Macaroni Cheese that involved two types of cheese and evaporated milk, it was a total disaster. Curdled and salty and certainly not worth the million calories it contained.

And then three years ago I actually attempted her turkey! You take your bird and put it in a bucket of water outside for a few days before Christmas. Obviously not just plain water, water full of salt, peppercorns, bouquet garni, oranges, bay leaves and all manner of spices. I didn’t have everything that was required so I put in some herbal tea bags, not that I think it mattered.

The problems arose when I tried to take the monster out of the bucket after it had swelled to nearly twice it’s size and was now the weight of a small truck. Hoisting it out a leg broke off and it skittered across the floor leaving a trail of salty slime which of course I slipped over on as I went to chase it across the kitchen. I cried for a bit, and then cried a bit more the next day when the turkey didn’t taste any different from normal.

Husband now cooks the main Christmas lunch to ensure we actually have something to eat on the big day. I am both happy and sad about this.

BUT I don’t just need to roast the turkey to get in the spirit of the season there are plenty of other things I can get to grips with…

So are you scared Santa? You should be – it might be one of my mince pies left out for you to eat on Christmas Eve!

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10 Responses to “I’m A Proper Turkey”

  1. Laura Williams 15/12/2011 at 7:26 pm #

    Ahh, I too have the Nigella Christmas book and my husband and I were weighing up the benefits of her ‘soak the turkey’ routine the other night. After much contemplation we decided that it looked like it would be much more hassle than it was worth. So i happily read your post as it has confirmed our suspicions! x

    • Alice Can't Cook 16/12/2011 at 3:47 pm #

      Honestly Laura we didn’t notice any difference, but then I am not a good cook and no where near Nigella’s perfection! Maybe you SHOULD give it a go and let me know if it worked?
      But yes it is a huge amount of hassle. And dangerous!

      Thanks for reading, Happy Christmas x

  2. Jenny Eatwell 16/12/2011 at 5:22 pm #

    You know, I tried Nigella’s approach one year. To be honest, it didn’t make an earthshattering difference to mine, either. I reckon that roasting the bird upside down has made the biggest difference, of all the ways I’ve tried. It kind of makes sense, to have the fat trickling down to the breast meat as opposed to having it trickling away from the breast meat, if you think about it!

    • Alice Can't Cook 21/12/2011 at 4:15 pm #

      Thanks Jenny, am going to make husband roast it upside down this year. How do you get crispy skin though? x

      • Jenny Eatwell 21/12/2011 at 4:44 pm #

        Ah, well you just turn it the right way up for the last 10-15 minutes – but having said that, because I’d used an ENORMOUS roasting tin, I didn’t need to turn ours. The skin was crispy all over! 🙂

  3. All That I'm Eating 19/12/2011 at 8:43 pm #

    Your story of getting the turkey out of the bucket made me laugh! I’m glad to know the drowning turkey method isn’t that beneficial as I’ve been contemplating whether to try it or not. I hope your turkey behaves itself this year!

    • Alice Can't Cook 21/12/2011 at 4:16 pm #

      It was like something out of the Creature from the Black Lagoon. A water logged monster!

      I might try the upside down method as mentioned above this year.
      Still I wouldn’t say don’t try it at all because it might work for a better cook than me, and Nigella swears by it. Honestly in her book she is evangelical about the drowned bird!

      Thanks for reading, merry christmas xx

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