Christmas lunch with
Edward Hayden & Anne Neary

(Serves 6-8)

Mini Bruschetta with Red Onion Marmalade and Blue Cheese



Red onion marmalade

2 tablespoons crème fraiche

10 cherry tomatoes-halved

4oz/110g blue cheese

Fresh rocket


2 medium baguettes-cut into slices approx 1 inch thick

3 tablespoons oil

Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas Mark 5. Brush the sliced bread with some of the oil and place onto a flat baking tray and transfer to the pre-heated oven. Cook for 10-12 minutes until they are crisp. Allow to cool down.

Red Onion Marmalade:

4 medium red onions-peeled and thinly sliced.

4oz/110g brown sugar

3 tablespoons red wine

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon of oil

In a large pot place the onions and the oil over a high heat. Continue to stir the contents to move the onions around and prevent them from sticking.

As the onions begin to colour and soften (after about 3 minutes) add in the brown sugar and continue to stir. The sugar will begin to soften and will coat all of the onions. Allow the softened sugar to come to the boil gently.

Next add in the red wine and the red wine vinegar. Allow the mixture to come to the boil and then simmer for about 10-15 minutes or until all of the liquid has evaporated off.

Make sure that you stir it occasionally to prevent anything sticking to the base of the pot. Transfer to clean sterilized jars and store in the fridge for up to 4 weeks.


Spread some of the crème fraiche on top of each crouton. Arrange a spoon of the red onion marmalade on top of each along with a half a cherry tomato. Crumble some blue cheese on top of each and then top with some fresh rocket leaves.

Roasted Butternut Squash & Cinnamon Soup

2oz/50g butter

2 carrots

1 leek

2 sticks celery

1 large butternut squash

½ medium onion

3 cloves of garlic

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1200ml chicken/vegetable stock

4floz/110ml pouring cream


Begin by peeling and chopping all of the vegetables into chunky pieces.

Select a large saucepan and slowly melt the butter. Add in all of the vegetables and mix thoroughly and continue to pan roast them for 6-8 minutes. Adding a little cinnamon at this stage will give the vegetables a nice spiced flavour.

Continue to keep a constant stir on the vegetables to prevent them from sticking to the saucepan. Season lightly at this stage.

Next you need to add in the cream and 2/3 of the stock. Bring this entire mixture to the boil and then reduce the heat to a constant simmer.

Simmer for the next 15-20 minutes or until all of the vegetables have softened.

Blitz the soup until smooth, adjusting the consistency with the remaining stock as required. Taste the soup and season accordingly. If you wish you can add a little additional cinnamon at this stage.

Serve the soup in a small bowl or china teacup with a swirl of either cream or crème fraiche lighted spiced with ground cinnamon.

This is a delicious soup and is ideal to have prepared in advance. The cinnamon gives it quite an unusual finish. This soup is very suitable for freezing. This soup will definitely be the toast of the party.

Additional Notes: If you wish you can add in a cinnamon stick with the vegetables at the beginning and remove it before the blitzing stage.

Buttered Turkey:

16lb/7.25kg Turkey

6 smoked rashers of bacon


1 medium onion-diced

4oz/110g butter

½ medium sized onion

1 cooking apple-grated or finely chopped

3oz/75g fresh cranberries

¾ lb/350g sausage meat

12oz/350g fresh white breadcrumbs

4 tablespoons of chopped mixed herbs –parsley, sage, thyme etc

Seasoning-Salt and Pepper

Additional Ingredients:

3oz/75g softened butter

1 tablespoon of chopped mixed herbs –parsley, sage, thyme etc

Heat the butter in a medium sized saucepan and gently fry off the diced onion for 4-5 minutes until it has softened but yet not coloured. At this stage add in the cranberries and the chopped mixed herbs and immediately turn off the heat. Allow this mixture to cool (You must be particularly careful about this stage particularly if you are preparing the terrine in advance because this is a critical stage when it comes to food poisoning). Add this ‘buttery onion’ mixture to a large mixing bowl and add in the grated apple, breadcrumbs and sausage meat. Season with salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Using some cold damp kitchen paper, wipe out the cavity of the turkey. Line the cavity with baking parchment and loosely pack the stuffing into the bird. Now weigh the turkey again, once it has been cooked to get a true estimation of the cooking time.

Put the turkey onto a large roasting tray. Mix the remaining butter and the remaining mixed herbs together. Gently manoeuvre your hand under the skin of the turkey and spread the flesh with the softened herb butter, trying to get it spread evenly over the breasts. Lay the streaky rashers of bacon across the buttered breasts to protect the meat and prevent it from drying out.

Put the turkey into the oven and begin to bake. If you feel the turkey is browning too quickly you can cover down the turkey with some tin foil for the first two hours. After the first hour reduce the temperature to 150C/300F/Gas Mark 2. Allocate 20 minutes per pound and then an additional 20-30 minutes in the oven. In total it should take about 5½ hours. When a skewer is inserted into the meat nearest the bone (ie-the Leg) the juices should run completely clear and the leg, when pulled, should feel loose and ready to fall away. Allow the meat to rest when it comes out of the oven and carve as required.

Honey Roasted


2 carrots-sliced

1 parsnip-diced

½ turnip-diced

1 bag Brussels sprouts

2 red onions-cut into wedges

2oz/50g garlic butter

Blanch and refresh the carrots, parsnips, turnip, brussels sprouts. Make sure the vegetables are well dried off. Place the vegetables into a flat roasting tray with the garlic butter and honey and roast for 15-20 minutes until thoroughly heated. Season lightly, and as required, and transfer to a large serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Chocolate & Rum Ganache Cake

4oz/110g butter

7oz/200g dark chocolate

4 large eggs-separated

4oz/110g caster sugar

2oz/50g plain flour

3 ½ oz/100 ground almonds


5floz/150ml pouring cream

3 tablespoons rum

7oz/200g dark chocolate

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Grease and line an eight inch round cake tin with parchment paper. Begin by making the cake. Place the dark chocolate and butter in a large bowl set over simmering water and allow to melt.

Beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale and then add in the chocolate and butter mixture. Sift the flour and ground almonds together and carefully fold these into the chocolate mixture.

Meanwhile whisk the egg whites until they are stiffly beaten. And then fold these into the chocolate mixture. Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for 35-40 minutes. Leave the cake to cool and then remove from the tin.

To make the icing place the cream and the rum into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Whisk in the chocolate and whisk continuously until a smooth icing has been achieved. When the cake has cooled spread the icing all over the cake and decorate with some fresh raspberries.

Mini Mince Pie



2 medium sized cooking apples

8oz/225g brown sugar

5oz/150g butter

Zest & Juice 2 oranges

4oz/110g mixed peel

2 tablespoons orange marmalade

5oz/150g currants

10oz/300g raisins

5oz/150g sultanas

2floz/50ll Irish whiskey

Chop the apples into small pieces and add to a medium sized saucepan with the butter and the sugar and cook gently for 3-4 minutes. Next add in all the other ingredients and continue to cook for approximately 10 minutes (the liquid should have come to the boil at this stage).

Transfer the mixture to sterilised jars and leave to rest for a couple of weeks before using.

Sweet Pastry:

10oz/300g plain flour

5oz/150g caster sugar

5oz/150g butter

1 egg

Put all ingredients into a food mixer and mix until bound together. Wrap in cling film and allow to rest.

Crumble Topping:

5oz/150g plain flour

3oz/75g brown sugar

3oz/75g butter

Rub all the ingredients together. Add a little ground cinnamon or desiccated coconut if you wish. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4.

Grease and line your tin (I would suggest using either a 12 cup bun tray or a 12 cup mini muffin tray). Cut out discs of sweet pastry and use them to line your chosen tray. Spoon some of the mincemeat into each of the pastry line cups and then top with some of the crumble topping.

Bake for 15-18 minutes and serve with some freshly whipped cream with the addition of Irish whiskey.

For more recipes see or

Food to Love (Edward) and Food for Sharing (Anne) are available in all good bookshops.

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