Serves: 2 – 3
Approx cost: €4.20 – €7 (depending if you collect chestnuts yourself, use fresh figs etc)
Approx calories (per serving): ~575
Approx preparation and cooking time: 70 mins
Hi everyone – I’m on holiday! Yay This post is coming to you from the snowy
wastes North of Sweden. Today I thought I’d tell you a little about the Christmas dinner I had a few days ago. Both my wife and I had been eating so much Christmas food in the run-up to the 24th/25th that, although we wanted something which would make us feel festive, we just didn’t want to do the whole turkey, roast potatoes, 5,000 calorie meal, followed by equally rich desserts. For my wife’s Christmas dinner we had beef tenderloin (and my, is it tender?!), a great big puddle of puréed potatoes – plenty of butter and cream – and some green beans, accompanied by my signature mushroom sauce. For my Christmas, I didn’t really have any idea, until I happened across a wonderful looking dish by Karen called Turkey Bracciole. It inspired me a lot, and while this dish is far from being the same thing, I ended up with something which I hadn’t done before and which I was really proud of. Served up with asparagus and puréed sweet potato, this was a fabulous alternative to massive festive meals which just generate huge quantities of leftovers.
I needed to make some major adjustments to the recipe – first off, I’ve never once seen turkey tenderloin for sale before. Indeed, I wasn’t even aware turkeys had tenderloins, so I substituted that for two large turkey escalopes. Secondly, my wife dislikes sun-dried tomatoes with the burning passion of a thousand suns, and I also wanted to try and use chestnuts for in the dish – something which seems very festive to me – so a plan was born. Thank you so much for your post Karen – you really inspired me and one day I even hope I can try your delicious looking original recipe (just need to tell my wife that the red bits are roasted pepper, not sun-dried tomato!)
I have all the bits and pieces I need to take some photos and transfer them to my laptop here so, with luck, I should have some photos for you in my next post – providing I don’t drop my camera in a snow-drift. Have a great wednesday everyone and take care!
- 2 large Turkey escalopes (~400g)
- ~180g Prepared Chestnuts (roasted and shelled, or boiled)
- ~6-8 Button Mushrooms
- ~2 fresh figs, or 3 tbsps of Fig Confit
- Half an Onion
- Handful of Basil leaves
- ~5 rashers of Bacon
- 1 Egg
- 2 tbsps Olive Oil
You’ll also need
A Food Processor
- Start off by pre-heating your oven to 170 degrees Celsius. While the oven is heating, roughly chop the onion and place into the Food Processor, along with the chestnuts. Wipe the mushrooms and remove the stalks and add them into the bowl too. If using fresh figs, trim the ends and chuck them in, or spoon in the fig confit. Finally, tear the basil and place in along with the egg (shell removed of course! :D)
- Blend until you have a slightly chunky paste. Obviously you don’t want it too smooth. If there are discernible pieces of mushroom or chestnut inside then this is perfect. Cover a board or work-surface with plastic wrap and lay the turkey escalopes on top. Place another piece of plastic wrap on top and beat using a meat hammer until about 8mm thick. Escalopes are, by definition, quite thin, but having them even thinner will make the rolling easier.
- Once the escalopes have been flattened, lay them out, just slightly overlapping each other, with the join vertical to you. Spoon the filling onto the turkey towards the bottom, making a large horizontal strip all the way from left to right, before gently rolling up. It doesn’t matter if it looks a bit disastrous. I guarantee you it will look nice when it’s cooked. Wrap the bacon all over the turkey, sealing up the ends if you can and the joins especially. Place a baking tray over the turkey and flip the board, turkey and tray upside down, in order to transfer it to the tray with the minimum handling possible. Remove the board and drizzle the 2 tbsps of Olive Oil over the turkey before placing into the oven.
- Cook for about 45 minutes, by which time the meat should be a rich golden brown. You can see in the picture that I had an excess of stuffing so I just arranged it around the outside of the meat. If you have a meat thermometer, the inside of the wrap should be 74 degrees Celsius when it’s done, so obviously, if it’s done sooner than this, of course feel free to remove it earlier.
- Once removed, carefully transfer it to a carving board and cut into slices, like so, arrange with your favourite accompaniments and enjoy!