For the stuffing:
- 75g butter
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 level tsp fresh sage, chopped
- 175g fresh white breadcrumbs
- 1 pinch (1/4 level tsp) freshly ground black pepper
For the turkey:
- 4.5kg (10lb) ready-prepared turkey crown
- 75g butter, at room temperature
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- Finely grated zest of orange
- 1 level tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 level tsp fresh thyme, chopped
For the gravy:
- 1 level tbsp plain flour
- 300ml (1/2 pint) chicken stock (use 1/2 a suitable chicken stock cube to 300ml)
- A pinch (1/4 level tsp) freshly ground black pepper
- Crispy potatoes with rosemary and red onion
- Pan-fried carrots with fennel and tarragon
- Pan-fried sprouts with nutmeg
Preheat the oven to 190°C/ 375°/ gas 5. To make the stuffing, heat a frying pan and melt the butter. Add the onion and sage and cook for a few minutes, until softened but not coloured. Stir in the breadcrumbs, mixing well to combine. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Wrap the stuffing in buttered tin foil and mould into a large sausage shape. This can be cooked in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
Next, prepare the turkey crown. Cream the butter in a bowl until very soft and then add the crushed garlic, orange rind, parsley and thyme. Beat well, until thoroughly blended. Gently loosen the neck flap away from the breast and pack the flavoured butter right under the skin –best done with gloves on your hands. Rub well into the flesh of the turkey, then recover the skin and secure with a small skewer.
Place the turkey crown in the oven and calculate your time. You should allow 20 minutes per 450g (1lb) plus 20 minutes, so a joint this size should take 3 hours and 40 minutes. Cover loosely with foil and remove this about 40 minutes before the end of the cooking time. The turkey crown will cook much quicker than a whole turkey, so make sure to keep basting. To check if the turkey is cooked, pierce a fine skewer into the chest part of the crown – the juice should run clear. When cooked, cover with foil to rest and keep warm.
To make the gravy, skim all the fat from the cooking juices in the pan and discard and then pour off all but 3 tablespoons of the juices from the roasting tin. Stir flour into the pan, slowly add the stock and cook, stirring all the time. Bring to the boil and let bubble for 2-3 minutes, until thickened. Season with freshly ground black pepper.
To serve, carve the turkey crown into slices and arrange 125g on warmed plates with the cooked stuffing, Brussels sprouts, roast carrots with garlic and parsley and crispy potatoes. Pour the gravy into a warmed gravy jug and hand around separately.
Crispy potatoes with rosemary and red onion
- 1.3kg (3lb) potatoes
- 100g plain flour
- 1 level tsp fresh rosemary
- 1 red onion
Peel and cut the potatoes into 1cm cubes and bring to the boil in 10 times their volume of water, then cook until tender. Dry thoroughly.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Spread flour out on a large flat dish, sprinkle with the rosemary and pepper and then gently roll the potato cubes in the seasoned flour until all pieces are lightly coated.
Add the floured potato cubes to a baking tin, drizzle the olive oil over them and bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Ten minutes before the potatoes are finished, add in the copped onion to bake with the potato.
Pan-fried carrots with fennel seeds and tarragon
- 375g (13oz) carrots, peeled
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp of fennel seeds
- 2 level tbsp chopped tarragon
Cut the carrots into 1cm slices on the diagonal, bring a large pan of water to the boil and add in the carrots. Cook for 5-10 minutes until just tender and drain them. Heat the oil and 25g of the butter in a large frying pan until foaming. Add carrots and toss in the fennel seed. Fry for a further 10 minutes until hot through.
To serve, scatter over the copped tarragon, again tossing until evenly coated. Then tip into warmed bowls to serve at the table.
Pan-fried Brussels sprouts with nutmeg
- 320g Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 40g butter
- 1/2 level tsp freshly grated nut meg
- A pinch (1/4 level tsp) fresh ground black pepper
- 2 small red onions, peeled and sliced
- 1 level tsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Bring a large pan of water to the boil and add in the sprouts. Cook for 5-10 minutes until just tender and drain them. Keep warm.
Heat the oil and 25g of the butter in a large frying pan until foaming. Toss in the red onions and fry over a medium heat for 5-8 minutes, until softened and golden. Add the Brussels sprouts and the nutmeg and fry for a further 3-5 minutes until golden and softened. Season well with pepper, add parsley and serve with the rest of the butter on top.
- Protein: Because the protein content of this dish is high it is great for people who are on dialysis. For those people with CKD 4-5 (not on dialysis) you may want to reduce the amount of turkey per portion to 75-100g/person.
- Fluid: If you are on a fluid allowance, make sure you include the gravy used in the dish as part of it.
- Salt: No salt is added to this dish apart from that contained in the stock for the gravy. Reduced-salt stock cubes are available in supermarkets, or a homemade stock using herbs and meat juices could be used as an alternative.
- Phosphate/potassium: If you have been advised by your kidney doctor or dietitian to follow a low-potassium diet, ensure you use the recommended amount of water to boil the vegetables first. Chopping the potatoes into small cubes increases the surface area and will allow for more potassium to be removed from the potato. The Brussels sprouts are a high-potassium vegetable, but the small serving size of 40g/person is suitable for those people on a low-potassium diet (and Christmas just isn't Christmas without a sprout!)
- Note: if you are on a low-potassium diet be mindful of how many fruit & vegetable servings you are including over the day. Ask you dietitian or kidney doctor if you should be following a low-phosphate diet. The meal will contain some phosphate from the turkey, so if you are prescribed a phosphate binder ensure you take as directed with this meal.
- Storage: Any leftover turkey and vegetables should be allowed to cool then be refrigerated and consumed within 2 days. If freezing, cool and place in a sealed container (ensure when reheating the food has been defrosted thoroughly and that the food is piping hot before serving).
- Cheaper options: The turkey leftovers could be used for a Boxing Day curry or sandwiches over the next few days. Dried herbs can be used instead of fresh.
- Vegetarian options: The traditional vegetarian option to roast turkey has been a nut roast. But for kidney patients this can be very high in both potassium and phosphates, so please discuss this with your dietitian if you are planning to have this as part of your Christmas meal. Mushrooms are also a high-potassium food so you should take care with meals containing these if you are on a low-potassium diet. Suitable vegetarian options for kidney patients include a lentil loaf, cranberry, falafels, or butternut squash/vegetable Wellington. Lentils or falafel would be preferable to the vegetables for patients on dialysis as they contain more protein. Soft, white cheese spread can be used to make a cheese sauce for vegetables such as boiled broccoli or cauliflower.