If you know Joyce Guiness, you know how much we love our food! We think that Christmas time is the perfect time to ditch those diets and start sampling all the delights that come at this time of year. We are going to give a run down of our favourite, festive foods and how to create them!
PIGS IN BLANKETS
To kick start, we are going to do a popular, much loved choice at Christmas- Pigs in Blankets. To find the best recipe we have called on Jamie Oliver who gives us a mouth watering version.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4.
- Working one at a time, lay the bacon out on a board and run the sharp side of your knife along the length of the rasher to stretch it out – this will make it even crispier.
- Dot with a few herb leaves, then place a sausage at one end and roll the bacon around it until it’s totally wrapped up. Place in a roasting tray and repeat till they’re all done.
- Cook for 30 minutes, or until golden, gnarly and cooked through.
- Using a fish slice, scrape the pigs in blankets from the bottom of the tray, leaving them in there, then add the Worcestershire sauce and give it a good shake, scraping all that sticky goodness from the bottom of the tray.
- Drizzle in the honey, then place on a medium heat on the hob and bring to the boil until caramelised, shaking continuously to coat. Serve immediately.
- 12 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon
- a few sprigs of fresh woody herbs, such as sage, thyme, rosemary
- 12 higher-welfare chipolata sausages
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1-2 teaspoons runny honey
PEARS, BLUE CHEESE AND PROSCIUTTO
If your house is like mine at Christmas, there will be plenty of cheese lying around the place. We have found this simple, easy crowd pleaser to use up the cheese and to enjoy as a starter to the meal.
- In a large bowl, toss the pears and lemon juice.
- Layer a slice of pear, an arugula leaf, and a piece of cheese on a piece of prosciutto and roll up.
- 2 pears (such as Bosc or Bartlett), each cut into 8 wedges
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup arugula
- 3 ounces blue cheese, cut into small pieces
- 6 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise
BLOODY MARY BEEF
This recipe is a twist on the traditional British Beef stew. We absolutely love it, it also ties in well if you are entertaining lots of people between Christmas and New Year and need an easy, tasty recipe to keep them full. Again, Jamie (our favourite) has given us inspo for this!
- Preheat the oven to 130ºC/250ºF/gas ½. Place a snug-fitting casserole pan over a medium heat to get hot. Season the brisket all over with salt and pepper, then add to the hot pan with a splash of olive oil and cook for about 10 minutes, or until gnarly and browned all over. Meanwhile, trim and chop the celery into 5cm chunks, reserving the yellow leaves for later, then peel and quarter the onions. Add the chopped veg to the pan, reduce the heat to low and cook gently for 5 to 10 minutes, or until slightly softened.
- Combine all of the Bloody Mary ingredients in a large jug, then pour into the pan with 250ml cold water and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Make a bouquet garni by tying the thyme, rosemary and bay together with string, then add to the pan and bring everything to the boil. Take the pan off the heat and cover with a cartouche – this is basically a scrunched-up piece of greaseproof paper that you place directly on the surface of the food. Cover the pan with tin foil and cook in the oven for 5 to 6 hours, or until the beef is tender and falling apart.
- When there’s about 30 minutes to go, peel and slice the potatoes into 2.5cm chunks. Add to a large pan of cold salted water, place over a high heat and bring to the boil, then cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until tender. Meanwhile, if using, remove and wash the outer green leaves of the cabbage, then roll them up like a cigar and finely slice. Add the sliced cabbage or curly kale to a pan of boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes, or until tender, then drain.
- Drain the potatoes in a colander and leave to steam dry, then return to the pan and mash well with the butter and horseradish. Season to taste, and add a little more horseradish if it needs it. Divide between plates and spoon over the greens, then pull the beef apart with two forks, pile on top and finely grate over a little fresh horseradish. Scatter over any reserved celery leaves, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and serve.
- 1 x 1 kg piece of beef brisket
- sea salt
- freshly ground white pepper
- olive oil
- 1 head of celery
- 4 small red onions
- a few sprigs of fresh thyme
- a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 1.6 kg Maris Piper potatoes
- 1 large Savoy cabbage , or 400g curly kale
- 1 knob of unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon jarred grated horseradish , or 3cm piece of fresh horseradish, finely grated, plus extra to serve
- extra virgin olive oil
For The Bloody Mary Mix
- 1 x 700 g jar of passata
- 1 tablespoon jarred grated horseradish , or 3cm piece of fresh horseradish, finely grated
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- a few drops of Tabasco sauce
- 3 tablespoons vodka
- 1 tablespoon port
- ½ a lemon , juice of
VEGETARIAN NUT ROAST (WITH A BLUE CHEESE TOPPING)
Here at Joyce Guiness, we pride ourselves on catering for everyone, that doesn’t change when it comes to our recipes! This is our fool proof nut roast. Tried and tested with the verdict of nothing short of yummy!
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350ºF/gas 4.
- For the nut roast crust, roughly chop the pistachios, then spread out on a baking tray with the seeds, then toast in the oven for 5 to 6 minutes.
- When the time’s up, transfer to a food processor, along with the chestnut purée, suet and maple syrup, and blitz until the mixture comes together into a ball. It will be very sticky to begin with, so stop and scrape the sides as you go.
- Place a large sheet of baking parchment on a work surface and sit the dough on it. Then, with lots of gluten-free flour on your hands and rolling pin, roll out the dough as thinly as possible (less than 5mm).
- If you’re making individual tartlets, oil and flour four 10cm loose-bottomed tart tins, then cut out the pastry to size. Or, roll out the dough and cut to the size of a large baking tin, then transfer to the tin using a fish slice.
- Prick the dough all over with a fork, cover with baking parchment, fill with baking beans or uncooked rice and bake blind for 12 to 15 minutes. Leave to cool completely in the baking tray, as it will be quite delicate straight from the oven. Keep the oven on.
- For the topping, chop the sweet potato into cubes, then place on a baking tray. Toss with a little oil, then bake for 25 minutes, or until soft.
- Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat, slice and add the mushrooms along with 1 teaspoon of cracked black pepper, and sauté for 6 to 8 minutes, until the mushrooms brown.
- Blitz the roasted sweet potato in a food processor with the crème fraîche, nutmeg and ½ a tablespoon of cracked black pepper (or to taste) to a smooth, creamy consistency.
- To assemble the tart, crumble the blue cheese over the base, arrange the sautéed mushrooms on top, then finish with the sweet potato mix.
- Sprinkle with linseed, roughly chop and scatter over the pistachios followed by the sunflower seeds, then add a drizzle of rapeseed oil, and pop back in the oven for 6 to 7 minutes until it just starts to brown. Serve hot with gravy and roast vegetables.
- 50 g shelled pistachios
- 50 g linseed
- 50 g sunflower seeds
- 100 g chestnut purée
- 50 g gluten-free vegetarian suet
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- gluten-free flour , for dusting
BLUE CHEESE TOPPING
- 400 g sweet potato
- rapeseed oil
- 20 g unsalted butter
- 250 g chestnut mushrooms
- 100 g crème fraîche
- 1 good pinch of ground nutmeg
- 75 g Dorset Blue Vinny , or vegetarian blue cheese
- 1 teaspoon linseed
- 1 teaspoon shelled pistachios
- 1 teaspoon sunflower seeds
RASPBERRY/CRANBERRY & WHITE CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE
Christmas would not be Christmas without plenty of sweet treats! Our take on the Good Housekeeping recipe means that we are keeping with the festive theme! This is the ultimate Christmas recipe and will not disappoint the fans.
- Preheat the oven to 170C/150C fan/gas mark 3. Butter the base and sides of a 23cm spring-form cake tin. Make sure the base is upside down, so theres no lip and the cake can slide off easily when cooked.
2. For the biscuit base: Place the cookies in a food processor and whiz until they form coarse crumbs. Add the melted butter and whiz together until mixed. Alternatively, place the cookies in a plastic bag and crush them using a rolling pin, then add to the pan with the melted butter and mix together to combine.
3. Tip the crumb mixture into the prepared cake tin, spreading it out evenly to cover the bottom of the tin and pressing it down firmly.
4. For the topping: Place the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set this over a pan of just simmering water, stirring occasionally until melted.
5. While the chocolate is melting, purée the raspberries in a clean food processor, or simply mash them with a fork, then push them through a sieve, discarding the seeds.
6. Using a handheld electric beater or an electric food mixer, mix the cream cheese and sugar together until smooth and fluffy. Beat in the flour, followed by the eggs, one at a time, then beat in the cream, vanilla extract, puréed raspberries and melted white chocolate.
7. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, spreading it evenly over the biscuit base, then bake on the lowest shelf in the oven for about 1 hour 30 minutes, or until the cheesecake is softly set in the middle. It should wobble a little when you gently shake the tin and the top will be slightly cracked.
8. Allow to cool down fully in the tin, then place in the fridge and leave to set for 2 hours.
9. To serve, loosen around the edges using a small, sharp knife, then unclip and remove the sides of the tin. Use a palette knife or metal fishslice to loosen the bottom of the cake from the base and ease the cake onto a plate. If you dont feel brave enough to slide the cheesecake off the base of the tin, just leave it on and place it like this on the serving plate. Dust with icing sugar to serve.
FOR THE BISCUIT BASE
- 250 g Oreo cookies, coarsely broken
- 75 g butter, plus extra for greasing
FOR THE TOP
- 175 g white chocolate, finely chopped
- 350 g fresh or frozen raspberries
- 900 g cream cheese
- 300 g caster sugar
- 25 g plain flour, sifted
- 4 eggs
- 2 tbsp single or regular cream
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- icing sugar, for dusting
DEEP FRIED SPROUTS WITH GOAT’S CHEESE AND BLACK CHILLI FLAKES
The clue is in the title, this is Christmas yumminess at it’s best! Lots of people are anti-sprouts, but, even the most avid sprout hater will love them with this recipe. What a great substitute for the boring, boiled Brussels recipe!
- If your sprouts need washing, pat them with kitchen paper, making sure they are really dry. Then score both ends, from the top to almost halfway down.
- Mash or blitz the goat’s cheese with the olive oil and mustard. Add milk until a thick drizzling consistency is achieved. Season with salt to taste – fried food takes a lot of seasoning, so make sure that the flavours come through really well.
- Deep-fry the brussels sprouts at about 165-170C/330-340F, until the outside few layers of leaves are going golden brown, but the inside is still green.
- Drain and tip on to kitchen roll and leave, preferably in a warm place, for a minute or two. Season with fine salt.
- While the sprouts are resting, wash and chop the parsley, arrange the sprouts on a big plate, drizzle with the goat’s cheese dressing and sprinkle with chilli flakes and the parsley. Serve while warm.
30-35 sprouts, bases trimmed, outer leaves removed
4 tbsp soft goat’s cheese
1 tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp grain mustard
A dash of milk
2 sprigs of parsley
Black chilli flakes, or red chilli flakes
We hope that you enjoy cooking and sampling these as much as we did! Have a great Christmas everybody!