The sloppy Joe is so much more than a sandwich or a burger, and giving it the Christmas treatment means we’re taking that bun filled with delicious pulled meat and crunchy exciting veg, served with gravy for dunking, to the next level.
Total time: 20 minutes
200g leftover cooked higher-welfare turkey meat
200ml leftover higher-welfare turkey gravy
½ a red onion
2 sprigs of fresh mint
1 fresh red chilli
4 seeded wholemeal buns
2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1 tablespoon HP sauce
1 teaspoon English mustard
½ teaspoon chipotle Tabasco sauce
1 splash of Worcestershire sauce
Shred and pull apart your leftover turkey meat and place in a small pan with a splash of water and 4 tablespoons of gravy. Pop a lid on and place on the lowest heat for 10 minutes to warm through. Warm the rest of the gravy in a separate pan, ready to use it for dunking later.
Meanwhile, peel and finely shred the carrot, matchstick the apple, peel and finely slice the red onion, and pick and slice the mint leaves. Place it all in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of pickling liquid from your gherkin jar. Finely slice the gherkins, using a crinkle-cut knife if you’ve got one, and the chilli, add to the bowl, mix well, lightly season and put aside. Mix all the BBQ sauce ingredients together.
Split and toast your buns, then spread the BBQ sauce inside them, top and bottom. Pile your pulled turkey on the bun bases, drizzle with a little gravy and top with some of that tasty slaw. Pop the bun lids on, and you’re away. Serve the rest of the gravy on the side for a naughty dunk, along with any leftover slaw.
TURKEY DRIPPING, BLUE CHEESE & CRUSHED HAZELNUT CRUMB
These sexy little beauties are super-fun to make, look amazing, loads of people will never have seen or enjoyed them before, and the flavour combination here just cooks into the potatoes so, so well. People. Will. Talk. About. These.
Serves 10 as a side
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes
2.5kg Maris Piper potatoes (choose the smallest ones)
½ a bunch of fresh thyme (15g)
4 tablespoons turkey dripping or olive oil
50g stale bread
100g blue cheese
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. The fun and unique part of this side dish is that you need to slice multiple times through the potatoes, but – importantly – without going all the way through, giving you a kind of concertina-style potato. This looks beautiful but also makes them wonderfully absorbent of flavour and amplifies their crispiness. Try to choose small potatoes, give them a wash, and if you have any larger ones, cut them in half and use the flat side as a base.
To make this process as simple as possible, place a potato on a board between the handles of two wooden spoons, so that when you slice down into the potato the spoons stop the blade from going all the way through. Carefully slice at just under ½cm intervals all the way along. Repeat with all the potatoes, placing them in a large roasting tray as you go. Pick half the thyme leaves into a pestle and mortar and pound with the turkey dripping or oil. Spoon over the potatoes, making sure the fat gets down into the cuts you’ve made, then season with sea salt and black pepper. Roast for 1 hour, or until the potatoes are golden and tender.
Meanwhile, tear the bread into a baking dish, add the hazelnuts and toast in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool, then tip into a food processor, strip in most of the remaining thyme leaves, add a pinch of sea salt and black pepper and half the cheese, and pulse into coarse crumbs.
When the hour is up, sprinkle the crumbs over the potatoes, then finely crumble a little bit of the remaining blue cheese on to each one. Dress the rest of the thyme sprigs with a tiny bit of oil and sprinkle randomly on top. Return to the oven for a final 10 minutes, or until the cheese starts to melt, then serve.
You can cook these in advance up to the point where they’re roasted and sprinkled with the toppings, then just finish them off when you’re ready, ensuring that they’re hot and crisp before serving.
Celebrating one of the most affordable veg out there – the humble red cabbage – this is a really delicious, classic veg dish. Wonderful as it is hot, I also love it cold, almost like a salad, with meat and cheese, so embrace those leftovers.
Serves 8 to 10 as a side
Total time: 35 minutes
1 red cabbage (1kg)
4 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon
2 eating apples
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 heaped teaspoon fennel seeds
100g dried prunes
6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Click away any tatty outer leaves from your cabbage, trim off the base, cut the cabbage into wedges, then finely slice it and put aside. Finely slice the bacon and place in a large casserole pan on a medium heat with 1 tablespoon of oil. Leave it to crisp up while you peel, core and dice the apples.
When the bacon is crispy, strip the rosemary leaves into the pan, stir for 1 minute, then use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon and rosemary to a plate, leaving the smoky bacon fat behind. Add the fennel seeds and diced apples to the pan, then tear in the prunes, removing any stones. Stir and fry for 2 minutes, then finely grate in the clementine zest and squeeze in the juice. Add the vinegar, cabbage and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Cook with a lid ajar on a low heat for 20 to 25 minutes, or until cooked through and a pleasure to eat, stirring well every 5 minutes to help intensify and mix up the flavours. Serve sprinkled with the crispy bacon and rosemary leaves.
Make this the day before and simply reheat it in a pan – it’ll taste great, but if you do this I’d recommend stirring the bacon and rosemary through it rather than serving them on top as a garnish.
I had this idea to marry off two of my favourite desserts – banoffee pie and baked Alaska, which means you get creamy cold vanilla ice cream in the middle of a delicious warm tart. And let me tell you, this marriage is blooming amazing!
Total time: 1 hour, plus cooling & freezing
150g unsalted butter (cold), plus extra for greasing
200g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
100g ground almonds
6 large free-range eggs
1 x 500g tub of quality vanilla ice cream
4 tablespoons dulce de leche or caramel sauce
300g caster sugar
2 large ripe bananas
1 tablespoon Camp coffee syrup
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Lightly grease a deep, 25cm loose-bottomed tart tin. To make the pastry, finely grate the orange zest into a food processor, add the cold butter, the flour, almonds and 1 egg, then blitz until it comes together into a ball of dough, wrap in clingfilm and chill for 30 minutes. Roll out on a clean flour-dusted surface until just under ½cm thick, then loosely roll up around the rolling pin and unroll over the tart tin, easing it in and pushing it carefully into the sides. Trim off any excess, patch up any holes, then prick the base with a fork, cover and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes (use any leftovers for mince pies). When the time’s up, line the pastry case with quality clingfilm (non- PVC), then fill with rice, making sure you pack it right out to the sides. Bake blind for 15 minutes, remove the clingfilm and rice and bake for another 5 minutes, or until lightly golden, then leave to cool. Soften your ice cream in the fridge.
Once the pastry case is cool, spread the dulce de leche or caramel across the base, scoop over the ice cream and freeze until frozen solid – you could get it up to this stage a day in advance. Turn the oven up to 220°C/425°F/gas 7. To make your meringue topping, separate the remaining 5 eggs (keep the yolks for another day). In a free-standing mixer, whisk the egg whites with a pinch of sea salt until they form soft peaks. Place the sugar and 80ml of water in a pan on a high heat. Use a sugar thermometer to monitor it getting up to 110°C, then reduce the temperature to low. Let it gently bubble until it gets up to 120°C. Remove from the heat and let the bubbles settle for 30 seconds, then very gradually pour it into the egg whites, whisking constantly on a low speed. Leave it whisking for 10 minutes to cool and thicken the mixture. Meanwhile, peel and slice the bananas, finely grate over the lime zest and squeeze over the juice, then toss together.
Get your tart out of the freezer, arrange the bananas over the ice cream, then pile on the meringue in nice peaks. Use a fork to ripple through drips of Camp coffee. Bake on the bottom of the oven for just 4 minutes, or until the meringue is lightly golden, leaving the ice cream frozen inside. Remove from the tin, and serve.
Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook by Jamie Oliver is published by Penguin Random House ⓒ Jamie Oliver Enterprises Limited (2016 Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook). Photographer: David Loftus.
This article appeared in Playtimes December Issue 2016
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