Monday, 28 December 2015
For our Christmas dinner this year we bought a plump Yorkshire duck from Turner & George. We tossed around a few ideas but decided to look to the East for our meal - following Meera Sodha's recipe for roast duck fesenjan.
Initially I'd thought to just do the wonderful persimmon & chicory salad we had last year, but for some reason Ocado aren't selling persimmons this year, and the thought of going to an actual shop was just not to be born. So I made a different Diana Henry recipe, a bulgar pilau with glazed figs from A Change of Appetite. I thought the balsamic and honey glazed figs would play particularly nicely with the sweet/sour pomegranate in the duck. And they did. Instead of the cavolo nero in the original recipe, I added a packet of flower sprouts on top of the bulgar wheat, to steam gently while the wheat cooked. It made a dish that was both delicious (lovely nutty bulgar, delicious tender flower sprouts, juicy figs) and festive.
For dessert I'd made some citrussy trifles. I did individual portions because it was just us and a big trifle looks so messy and unappetising once a couple of spoonfuls have come out, so the spares could stay pristine in the fridge for a couple of days. They were mini orange and lemon sponges (half iced, which is why there is a big white smear half way down), with a good slosh of Cointreau, then orange suprême and Cointreau and orange jelly (just freshly squeezed orange juice and a bit of Cointreau, set with leaf gelatine), then a layer of (bought) vanilla custard, topped with orange syllabub and garnished with crystallised pomelo rind. Very boozy, but fresh and lovely.
Of course, a whole duck is still a bit much for two, so on Christmas Day we just had the breasts. On Boxing Day I pulled the rest of the meat from the bones and reheated it in the remaining walnut sauce. I made some spinach rice and a simple apple raita. And it was just as delicious as the original roast.