I really enjoy Christmas, Honestly I do, And one of the bits that I look forward to most is my Christmas dinner. But I have to confess that by the time I get to actually sitting down to my own Christmas dinner, After feeding god only knows how many people with turkey dinners over the festive period, the idea of sitting down on Christmas Day to slices of turkey, fills me with a certain amount of dread.
So what to do?
Well this fantastic delicious recipe for Turkey Wellington is what we have on our table, And will definitely give you an extremely tasty alternative to your usual roast.
The recipe does require some time and planning, But will be worth the effort believe me. You can make it in advance, 2/3 days before, which leaves you to enjoy your Christmas jollifications with a glass of your favourite tipple. In fact, I'd urge everyone to prepare as much as possible a couple of days before, I can never understand those who try and do everything on the day!! Make your life easier people please.
As I've said this will take a little of your time and effort, I'm using the wonderful Musk's Chipolata Sausage as the base for my sausage/stuffing mix, the sausage already has a great flavour with the addition of cranberries and chestnut puree, so you don't have to add any of the additional flavours if you prefer, But hey!! It's Christmas!!!
They also have some other wonderful flavours of sausages available which I'd highly recommend you try too.
The brining isn't essential, But will add flavour, once you have tried it you'll never look back.
This recipe will easily feed 6/8 people
I'd recommend serving your Turkey Wellington with some shredded sprouts cooked with pancetta, chestnuts, sage and butter, some cranberry sauce and turkey gravy.
And as a wee additional present!! This will eat wonderfully on Boxing Day, cold, with some chutney and pickle, Well! If you have any left that Is!!!
For the turkey you'll need
Approximately 1kg of turkey breast ( ask your butcher for a piece of equal cylinder shape )
18/20 rashers of Musk's streaky unsmoked bacon
For the sausage mixture
250g Of Musk's Christmas Chipolata sausage meat ( Just remove the skins )
50g dried cranberries
50g chopped mixed nuts
100g of dried clementine ( If you can't find dried clementine then mixed peel will be fine )
100g diced pancetta
150g cooked onions
1 good pinch of ground nutmeg
1 good pinch of ground clove
1 good pinch of ground mace
8 sage leaves
Salt and pepper
For the Wellington pastry
2 sheets of ready rolled puff pastry ( You can if you wish, make your own, but you can buy some great all butter puff pastry in the supermarkets )
4 egg yolks
For the herb brine to soak your turkey
1 litre water
100g of table salt
2 good sprigs of fresh rosemary
4 good sprigs of fresh thyme
4 bay leaves
4 cloves of garlic
8 black peppercorn
For the herb brine. In a large sauce pan, Add the water and salt and gently bring to the boil. Whisk until the salt has been incorporated. Once the salt has dissolved, remove from the heat and add the herbs and all of the aromatics. Refrigerate until chilled completely. To brine your turkey breast. With a sharp knife, Carefully remove any white fat and sinew from your turkey breast. You should have an even thickness long cylindrical shape. Now you can place your turkey breast into the brine and leave for 1 hour. After an hour, Remove and rinse in cold water, Pat dry with paper kitchen towel and place on a plate and refrigerate. For the Musk's chipolata sausage meat In a frying pan, on a medium heat, sweat the onion in the oil until soft but no colour, transfer to a bowl and then chill. Once the onion is cold, add all of the other ingredients together to the bowl, using your clean hand or a wooden spoon, mix all the ingredients until fully incorporated, season well with salt and pepper and set aside. For the turkey breast. Lay a large sheet of cling film on a work surface and carefully place the rashers of Musk's streaky unsmoked bacon on top, overlap them slightly, this will create a square.
Now very carefully so as not to disturb the bacon, spread the Musk's Chipolata sausage mixture evenly over the bacon, this can be a little tricky so take your time. Place the turkey breast on top of the bacon and sausage, Now slowly using the cling film, roll the bacon and sausage meat up and over the turkey breast to create a sausage shape, tie the cling film really tightly at each end, You'll have a nice thick turkey sausage. To cook the turkey breast Heat a pan large enough to fit your turkey breast, with water, and heat to to 85°C ( do not allow to boil, the temperature should remain just below boiling point). Carefully place the turkey breast into the pan and let it gently cook for 45 minutes. After 45 minutes place immediately into an ice bath. Once the turkey is completely cold, Preferably leave the turkey in the fridge over night to guarantee it's completely chilled through, remove the cling film and dry with a paper kitchen towel. Heat a non stick pan on a medium heat, add a small amount of oil then add the turkey breast, colour all around, turning frequently until nicely golden, then set aside and allow to cool down. To make the Wellington Make the egg wash by combining the egg yolks. Take your sheet of puff pastry and lightly brush with the egg wash. Place your turkey breast on one side of the puff pastry. Carefully roll the turkey in the pastry, Make sure that the pastry is as tight as possible around the turkey, leave about 5cm of pastry at the ends, and trim off any excess pastry. Keep the pastry join on the bottom of your Wellington and crimp both ends to seal. Place the Turkey Wellington onto to a square of grease proof paper, glaze the pastry with the egg wash, then with the second piece of pastry, cut a decorative lattice pattern and carefully drape over the top of the Wellington,( This isn't essential but it looks amazing ) Trim the lattice to fit, then glaze with more with egg , this will give a fantastic golden colour once baked. To cook the Wellington: Heat your fan oven to 200c. Place the turkey onto a baking sheet and place in the oven for 15 minutes, Now reduce the oven temperature to 180c and cook for another 15 minutes until the pastry is a golden brown colour and crispy. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving.