Fascinating Food - Christmas - Roast Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts
Fascinating Food – Cooking the Perfect Christmas Dinner – Roast Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts
A Christmas Dinner is traditionally always accompanied by two sides. Roast potatoes that are perfectly soft and smooth on the inside, and crispy on the outside; and Brussels sprouts that are full of flavour. Many people are not fans of Brussels sprouts but maybe that’s because they just haven’t tried a lovely tender flavourful Brussels Sprout.
A traditional Christmas dinner will include:
· Turkey with Gravy.
· Roast Potatoes and Brussels sprouts.
· Festive Deserts.
In this article I will look at cooking roast potatoes and Brussels sprouts to perfection!
The best way to serve a perfect dish of Roast Potatoes is to keep the recipe Simple. Many famous chefs will tell you their own personal techniques but these often are a lot more complex and are very easy to ruin! You really don’t need to boil them till disintegration, or sprinkle the potatoes with a magic powder.
A simple Roast Potato Recipe (serves 6)
Start by washing and peeling 1.2kg of Potatoes. The best potatoes to use are Maris Piper, Desiree or King Edward potatoes. Keep the peels for now in a separate container. They will be useful later on! Cut the potatoes into either quarter of halves depending on their size. An ideal size for the potato pieces to be cut into is around 2cm cubed.
If you have a muslin bag place the peels into them.
Place the potatoes into a large pan and add some salted boiling water. Add the peels to the bag as well (weather in the muslin bag or not). The potato peels will add some extra flavour to the potatoes.
Get a roasting tin big enough for all the potatoes to sit independently. You don’t want them to touch other! Make sure you have a big enough tray, or enough small trays!
Cover the roasting tin with either 3 tablespoons of olive oil or 2 tablespoons or goose fat. Goose Fat will defiantly give your potatoes a special amazing flavour. If you don’t want to try it just stick with the regular olive oil!
Drain the potatoes and throw away the peels. They’ve done their job now. Put the potatoes into the pans and shake gently to rough the edges a little.
Warm up the roasting in the oven at 190c. When hot place onto a warm hob and add the potatoes one by one. They should each sizzle as they hit the pan.
If you want to add any additional salt and pepper, or additional seasonings, do it now.
Roast the potatoes at 190c for around an hour, until they appear golden and crunchy.
Whilst cooking, ensure to watch them, if they start to look dry you should add more olive oil or Goose fat.
Leave to rest for around ten minutes before serving.
When choosing Brussels sprouts, try to choose small ones; and if they are large make sure you cut them in half before you start cooking them! If you don’t the middle will be raw, and the outside very soft.
A myth about Brussels sprouts is to cross the bottom of the before you cook. There really is no need for this, as it will only make them waterlogged and mushy! Forget all your preconceptions!
A great twist to the dish is cooking them with some flaked almonds. This is totally optional. Other chefs will tell you they add Chestnuts. They are also worth a try.
A simple Brussels Sprouts Dish
Start by washing and trimming 500g of Brussels sprouts. Add them into a large pan of salted boiling water. Cook them until they are just slightly starting to get tender. This should take about five to eight minutes depending on their size. Make sure you watch them like a hawk; if you over cook them you will ruin this dish.
Melt a large knob of butter in a separate frying pan and add 100g of flaked almonds. Toast until lightly browned.
When you have drained the sprouts add the flaked almonds to the pan and toss.
Season with salt and pepper; and serve right away.
Do not attempt to pre-cook this dish.