Christmas lunch is a great British institution - roast turkey with all the trimmings - roast potatoes, brussel sprouts, stuffing, gravy..and all that festive jazz. If you're a resident of a European country or the US or Australia/New Zealand, you might be looking forward to this kind of menu over the Christmas period. But if you live outside of those regions - say in my home country, Japan or China and you want a taste of Christmas on your table over the season, it can prove a bit more difficult to get hold of a turkey or a Christmas goose, say or Christmas stuffing and the like. So for those of you who might be reading this outside of the "Christmas zone" but wanting to try a taste of Christmas, here is a simplified (and dare I say, quicker and much cheaper!) recipe to create a little bit of Christmas in your own home.
To keep things simple and available from your local supermarket, I use chicken legs as a substitute for turkey. That keeps things real cheap and also means you can try out a taste of Christmas even if you're only cooking for two rather than a whole, hungry family. The other ingredients are all (I hope!) easily available - baby potatoes, some brussel sprouts and red cabbage. I give this recipe a little more festive flavour with some "pigs in blankets" - cocktail sausages wrapped in bacon and some nice, home made chicken gravy.
There isn't anything too complex involved in the preparation or cooking and this can be prepared in about an hour. So if you're looking for a little taste of Christmas without the fuss, this might be the recipe for you.
If you fancy trying this out, you can find the Youtube tutorial by clicking Easy Christmas Lunch for Two or by scrolling to the bottom of the page. The written recipe is just below.
Happy Christmas wherever you are! Kurumi XXXX.
(makes 2 servings)
2 chicken legs (with skin)
1 clove of garlic
2 rashers of bacon
some salt & pepper
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary*
8 baby potatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
a sheetof aluminium foil for your baking tray
some ‘pigs in blankets (optional)**
1/4 small red cabbage
1/4 red onion
1/4 small apple
a little salt
1 tsp gound cinnamon
3 tbsp raisens or sultanas
3 tsp raw brown sugar
3 tsp vinegar
3 tbsp water
8 brussel sprouts
1 tsp salt
for the gravy;
some juice from roasted chicken tray
some black pepper
2 tsp corn flour
fan oven at 190’C/ for 50 mins* (please adjust roasting time according to yout oven)
*dried rosemary works well if you cant find any fresh rosemary to use
*pigs in blankets are small cocktail sausages wrapped in strips of bacon - if these are unavailable ready-made where you live, it is really easy to make your own
First, prepare the chicken legs - halve the lemon and slice one of the halves into a few thin slices
cut the garlic clove into 4 slices
make 2 deep cuts into each chicken leg. push the garlic slices into the cuts. next, wrap each chicken leg with a rasher of bacon, then place the legs on a large dish bowl or tupperware
season the chicken legs with salt and pepper. place the lemon slices onto the chicken legs, then squeeze the juice from the other half of the lemon over them too. add the sprigs of rosemary and marinade for at least 30 mins (preferably longer) in the fridge
meanwhile, place the baby potatoes in a pan and cover with water. bring to the boil and simmer for 8 minutes
next, prepare the 1/4 red cabbage. remove the stem from the base and slice the cabbage into shreds
cut the 1/4 red onion into slices
remove any core from the 1/4 apple, slice thinly and then cut the slices into smaller pieces
place the red cabbage shreds, onion slices and apple pieces into a medium saucepan. add a little salt, ground cinnamon, the raisins or sultanas, brown sugar, vinegar and water into the pan. cook over a low-medium heat for 15 - 17 minutes with the lid on
now, return to the potatoes. when they have simmered for 8 minutes, drain and add 1 tbsp of olive oil. swirl the potatoes around in the pan so that they are coated well with the oil
bring your oven to 190C / 375 ’F (fan)
place a sheet of almunium foil in a baking try and place the chicken legs on the foil. pour over the marinade. add the boiled potatoes. pour over the leftover olive oil from the saucepan over the chicken legs
add the pigs in blankets if you're using them
check the red cabbage. if there is little or no liquid left, it should be done, so turn off the heat
place the chicken legs in the oven and cook for about 45 - 50 minutes
meanwhile, prepare 6 - 8 brussels sprouts by trimming the ends and removing the out leaves. cut a cross shape into the base of the brussel sprouts to help them cook more quickly
bring some water to the boil in a small saucepan and simmer the brussels sprouts with a tsp of salt for 6 minutes. drain
after 45 - 50 minutes, remove the chicken from the oven. the chicekn legs should be a ice golden brown. if you're unsure, test the chicken is cooked by using a skewer. if the juices run clean, the legs are cooked. remove everything from the baking tray onto serving plates.
there should be some cooking juices left in the bottom of the baking tray. pour this juice from the baking tray into a small saucepan. add about 60ml water, 3/4 tsp of salt and a generous shake of black pepper. turn the heat on and add the 2 tsp ofcornflour. stir the corn flour into the liquid quickly to thicken the sauce - this should only take about 1 minute
serve your easy Christmas lunch for Two with the gravy on the side. Merry Christmas!