Good Food Blog
No-fuss ChristmasPosted at 9:30AM, 24 December 2007 by Caroline Hire - Food editor, bbcgoodfood.com
I'm aiming to have a no-fuss Christmas. Usually I'm plotting and planning the menu from mid-November but with my wedding at the beginning of the year, all excess energy and excitement have been firmly pointed in that direction.
For the purpose of roasting, surely Maris Piper is the king of potatoes? These are perfect for reaching the Holy Grail, a creamy centre with a crunchy, flaky outer casing. However, this year my organic box scheme has supplied me with Valours. I can't seem to find much about them on the net so if this is your roasting potato of choice, please put my mind at ease.
As for the controversial subject of 'how to', I like to parboil the potatoes until they take on a fluffy appearance, drain and dry them out over the heat with a little shake, before adding them to a roasting pan of (not too much) hot olive oil. There is of course much debate over the issue, with some people preferring a smoother finish, others swearing by goose or duck fat and the more cosmopolitan, adding ingredients like rosemary and garlic.
Loving the side dishes almost more than the main event, I'll also be chucking a few parsnips in with the potatoes, boiling sprouts, braising red cabbage and making bread sauce. Cranberry sauce has already been bought from my local deli. Life's too short to make something you don't like.
For the final flourish, the traditional is giving way to a Chocoholic's Christmas Pudding (because I am one). I tried it in the Good Food kitchen earlier this year and am still in raptures...
Happy cooking and happy Christmas!