Even though a turkey, gammon, duck or even goose might be the main attraction for your Christmas meal, the sides can make or break a Festive lunch/dinner and so, I always try to put as much effort into them as I do the meat (even more so when I have vegetarian guests joining us).
I don’t think Christmas would be Christmas without roast potatoes. Everyone is going on about duck fat lately and I’m afraid, I’ve jumped right on that band wagon. There is nothing like a potato perfectly roasted in duck fat. Crunchy and salty on the outside, fluffy and creamy on the inside. Pure perfection. Definitely not something you want to eat everyday but during Christmas all calories are considered null & void, right?
8 large potatoes, peeled and chopped into large chunks
5 heaped tablespoons duck fat
flaked sea salt to taste
1. Place the potatoes in a pot and top with cold water.
2. Place over high heat and allow to come to the boil.
3. Boil the potatoes for 7-10 minutes until just starting to soften, they must not be cooked at all.
4. Pre-heat the oven to 200°c.
5. Remove from the heat and drain the water. Shake the potatoes in the pot and turn onto a non-stick roasting tray.
6. Allow to sit and dry for 15 minutes.
7. Dot the duck fat all over the potatoes and season well.
8. Place in the oven and allow to roast for 30-45 minutes until the potatoes are golden brown and crisp.
9. Remove from the oven and serve.
Sticky, sweet carrots are also a great addition to any Christmas meal and I decided to flavour mine with honey and cumin seeds. This combination is one I fall back on time and time again and the end result is always delicious. I used rainbow, baby carrots but you could also use regular carrots, peeled and chopped into large chunks. Just delicious!
800g baby carrots (I used rainbow carrots), peeled
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons runny honey
1 tablespoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons salt
1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°c and line a roasting tray with baking paper.
2. Combine all the ingredients in a big bowl and mix well.
3. Place the carrots in the roasting tray and pour over any of the liquid remaining in the bowl.
4. Place in the oven and roast for 30-45 minutes until the carrots are cooked and the glaze has become sticky.
5. Remove from the oven and serve.