- 100g dried cranberries
A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…
- 50ml ruby port
- 1 small onion, chopped
Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…
- 2 rashers unsmoked back bacon, cut into strips
- 50g butter
Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 450g sausagemeat
- 140g fresh white or brown breadcrumbs
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…
- ½ tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 140g peeled, cooked chestnuts, roughly chopped
'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire...' that kitsch old Nat King Cole song perfectly…
- 1 medium egg, lightly beaten
The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…
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Soak the cranberries in the port for an hour. Fry the onion and bacon gently in the butter, until the onion is tender and the bacon is cooked. Add the garlic and fry for another minute or so.
Cool slightly, then mix with all the remaining ingredients, including the cranberries and port, adding enough egg to bind – I find it easiest to use my hands. Fry a knob of stuffing in a little butter, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
To Cook: This stuffing can be baked in a dish, or rolled into balls that will be crisp on the outside and moist inside. To bake, press the stuffing into a greased ovenproof dish in a layer that is around 4cm thick. Bake at 190C/gas 5/fan 170C for about 40 minutes, until browned and, in the case of sausagemeat stuffing, cooked right through. Alternatively, roll into balls that are about 4cm in diameter. Roast the stuffing balls in hot fat (they can be tucked around the turkey or done in a roasting tin of their own) for 30-40 minutes, until crisp and nicely browned on the outside.
Choose the best chestnuts
The best fresh chestnuts come from Italy, France or Spain. They should be glossy-skinned and plump, and weigh heavy in the hand – a sure sign of a good fat nut lurking inside. To save time, buy them freshly roasted from a friendly street vendor and peel while still warm on the way home.