Food & Wine

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Food that goes with Deakin Estate Merlot
Pinot Noir

Mulled cherry turkey crown and Season's trimmings


Cranberry sauce
600g fresh cranberries
Sugar or Splenda to taste
1 tablespoon Walnut and Apple jam (optional -apple sauce should do) Cinnamon to taste

Cranberry and chestnut stuffing: See method.

Blue cheese mashed potatoes:
3 baking potatoes
1 tablespoon strong blue cheese (more Roquefort than Stilton)
1 egg yolk
15 cl milk (more if you like it smoother)
A pinch of nutmeg

Crown turkey with mulled cherry mix:
1 turkey crown (about 2kg)
2 tablespoons cherry jam (I used organic Morello cherry conserve from Waitrose - UK)
8 cloves
8 juniper berries
8 black peppercorns
1 cube chicken stock
25cl red wine
4 shallots
A few sprigs of fresh sage

Cranberry sauce:
Place the cranberries in a sauce pan, lid on, and turn to a medium heat, add the other ingredients and wait for the berries to pop. Stir until all berries have popped, adjust sweetness and cinnamon and reduce to a low heat for half an hour. Leave to cool at room temperature.

Cranberry and chestnut stuffing:
I was lazy and used a good supermarket mix. Prepare as per instructions and reserve. :)

Blue cheese mashed potatoes:
Peel potatoes and cut into 2-3 cm cubes. An hour into the turkey cooking, place in a pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, add salt, reduce to simmer for 20 mins.

Remove and drain, add back to the pan, add the crumbled cheese and mash. Add the yolk and milk, mash a bit more. Add the nutmeg and stir. I use a cast-iron pan, so it keeps the mix warm enough without the need to reheat or to be exact on timing.

Crown turkey with mulled cherry mix:
Grind all spices together and add to the wine in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and add the thyme, jam and stock cube. Stir constantly while simmering for 5-10 min. Leave to cool - it should become a thick jelly.

Pre-heat the oven at 165 C (fan), 190 (normal). Make three penny-sized holes in the turkey skin with a sharp knife without getting into the flesh. With a teaspoon handle, lift the skin as far as you can reach. With the spoon, pour the sauce slowly under the skin and rub it towards the end (if you have made Peking duck before, use that method instead). You should aim for a thickness of about half a centimetre and be left with a couple of spoonfuls of sauce.
I left it to soak for over an hour. Put the stuffing compactly in the cavity and wrap over with the extra skin. Place in a large cast-iron pan/roaster. I use this instead of a roasting pan because it almost removes the need for basting and allows the heat to work evenly.
Around the crown, place the peeled shallots, the sage, the rest of the sauce and 25cl of water. Cover with foil. Place in the oven for 1 hour. When this is done, put the potatoes on for the mash. Increase the oven temperatures to 190 C if using a fan, remove the foil, baste generously with the juices and place back in the oven uncovered for another half an hour.
(Note: the sauce will turn the skin very dark but it's not burnt!) Allow 15 min to rest before carving.

Serve and enjoy! I used the meat juices for a well in the mash...

Deakin Estate Merlot meets the fruitiness of the plate exactly halfway, while its acidity balanced the rich, sticky flavours of the side dishes and its own complexity emulated the spice.

Recipe by Thierry Goslar