We know that dinner on Christmas Day is one of the most thought-out and sometimes stressful meals to cook in the year. It’s a time to enlist the products of true professionals! These fantastic cooking tips are brought to you by Stellar Kitchenware.
Established in 1984, Stellar hosts 10 kitchenware ranges, four ranges of knives and 10 cutlery designs offering outstanding choice to home cooks. The first choice of professionals, signature ranges are supported by comprehensive collections of tools and gadgets, bakeware, teaware and electrical products.
Stellar recognise that getting ready for one of the most important roast dinners of the year is best explained by a chef, for all of those helpful tips and added touches that will make any Christmas dinner seem like it was made in a restaurant.
With over 30 years’ experience in the industry and working as a chef in the U.K., Ireland and across Europe, Tony O’Reilly has a wealth of knowledge making him a fantastic chef and demonstrator.
Tony has owned his own restaurant, written two books and trained hundreds of established chefs – who better to show you how to get the best out of your kitchenware?
With lots of cooking techniques and delicious tips, here are Tony O’Reilly’s top tips for cooking the perfect Christmas dinner…
COOK YOUR MEAT TO PERFECTION
THE PERFECT UTENSILS
The Stellar Roasting Pan is the perfect piece of equipment to cook up your turkey and gravy for the ultimate meal. Made from durable carbon steel, this roasting pan and rack are heat resistant up to 180 degrees and suitable for all hob types.
Using a baster will help you achieve the most golden, crispy skin on your turkey – and everyone loves turkey skin!
GETTING CRISPY CRACKLING
- Score the skin all over.
- Pour boiling water into the scored cracks. This opens the scores more and helps with the crackling process. Sprinkle the skin all over with salt.
- Always begin at 200°C/425°F/Gas mark 6 for 15 minutes then reduce to 160oC/325oF/gas 3. This ensures not only the crackling is crispy but the pork is cooked through and is moist and succulent.
- Once the meat is cooked remove it from the oven. Increase the oven temperature to 200°C/425°F/Gas mark 6.
- Take the skin off and chop it into small pieces before placing on a tray. Cook until nice and crisp.
THE PERFECT ROASTIES
- Choose the right potato: Rooster potato or Maris Piper’s are best as they hold their shape better went cooked and have a floury texture that gives you a crispy exterior and a lovely light fluffy inside.
- Parboil first: Boiling your potatoes for a short time before roasting you have a better chance of achieving that lovely crispness on the outside.
- Never leave in water: Ensure to drain the water straight away, then throw back into the pot and shake to roughen the surface. Using the stay cool saucepan makes draining all that easier.
- Extra crispiness: Pour hot goose fat over the potatoes in the pot and shake to ensure they are covered evenly. Sprinkle with Semolina or polenta for extra crispiness.
- Place the potatoes in a deep roasting tin to make sure you catch all the delicious flavours and juices.
- Oven temperature: Make sure you're over at 200°C/425°F/Gas mark 6 and cook for 40-50 minutes.
GRAVY WITH A TWIST
- To enrich your gravy you can add butter, wine, port, sherry or brandy.
- Try Stellar non-stick milk pan designed to make silky smooth sauces on any kind of hob.
- To give different meats their own special gravy flavour:
- Add a spoonful of mint sauce and or red currant jelly for lamb;
- Add creamed horseradish or mustard for roast beef;
- Add applesauce or mustard with half and half cider and a stock cube or flavour pots for roast pork.
For more information on Stellar products, visit the Brown Thomas website.