Sunday, 19 October 2014

Roast Turkey Thigh Salad

Roast turkey thigh slices are served with a simple salad and a granary roll

We're approaching that time of year when turkeys will be bought and consumed in their millions - be it at Thanksgiving or at Christmas - but I always wonder why so many of us confine the enjoyment of turkey to just one special time of year. I buy turkey year round but rarely if ever in the form of a whole bird. I buy breast steaks for frying, diced breast meat for stir frying and perhaps most often of all, turkey legs and thighs for roasting. I bought this turkey leg and thigh last week and stuck the leg for the moment in my deep freeze. On what was an unseasonably warm Autumnal day, I roasted the thigh and served it cold as part of a simple but really delicious salad.

Turkey drumstick and thigh

Ingredients (Serves Two)

1 whole turkey thigh (bone in)
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
4 generous handfuls of mixed salad (or as required)
2 granary bread rolls
Butter for the rolls (optional)
Homemade rowan and apple jelly to serve (or jelly of choice)

Elasticated webbing removed from turkey thigh


If your turkey thigh comes with elasticated webbing like this one, you should remove this prior to cooking. This will allow you to open up the thigh and season the flesh side with salt and pepper.

Turkey thigh ready for roasting

Your oven should be preheated to 400F/200C/Gas Mark 6.

Lightly oil a roasting tray and lay the thigh on it, seasoned flesh side down. Rub the skin with more oil and season with salt.

Turkey thigh is pierced at thickest part

Put the turkey thigh in to your oven for one hour. Unless the thigh is exceptionally large, this should be long enough to fully cook it but it is vital to ensure this is the case in every instance. The way I do this is by sticking a metal skewer deep in to the thickest part of the thigh, right through to the bone.

Checking turkey juices run clear

Remove the skewer and use it to lightly press down right next to the hole you have made and check the escaping juices are running completely clear. Any trace of red or pink whatsoever and you should put it back in to the oven for ten more minutes before testing again in the same way.

Roast turkey thigh

When you have ensured the thigh it fully cooked, lift it with a large spatula and carving fork to a deep plate.

Roast turkey thigh is covered and left to rest

Cover the turkey thigh and leave it for at least fifteen minutes to rest.

Carving roast turkey thigh

The turkey thigh should be carved on a board. It can then be served immediately if you wish but I re-covered the sliced meat and left it to cool completely.

Roast turkey thigh slices are plated

Divide the turkey slices between two serving plates before adding the salad and roll (buttered if desired). The jelly I served with this meal is homemade rowan and apple jelly which is more commonly served with beef or wild game but I think it worked very well with the turkey.

Granary rroll and salad are plated with roast turkey thigh slices

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Chicken Wings Chop Suey

Chicken wings meat with noodles and Chinese chop suey sauce

I recently started a brand new food blogging project devoted entirely to chicken wings recipes and hopefully devising new ways to prepare, serve and enjoy what is the favourite fast food of millions. I thought therefore I would share here just one idea to show the types of dishes I have been and will be creating. I know that the idea of chicken wings chop suey may sound strange to many as it may sound as though it will be difficult and messy to eat - but as you'll hopefully see below, that's definitely not the case.

Chicken wings and chop suey sauce

Ingredients per Person

4 whole raw chicken wings
6 ounce sachet Chinese chow mein stir frying sauce
1 individual nest serving of dried egg noodles
1/2 medium white onion
2 tablespoons vegetable or sunflower oil for stir frying

Tips are cut from chicken wings


On a suitable chopping board, chop the bony tips off the wings and discard. Note that occasionally, supermarket wings will already have had the tips removed in this way.

Chicken wings are marinated in chop suey sauce

Pour the chop suey sauce in to a large glass or stone bowl, add the wings and stir to ensure even coating. Cover with clingfilm and leave to marinade for half an hour but do not put them in the fridge as they should be cooked from room temperature.

Chicken wings are lifted to an oven tray for roasting

Preheat your oven to 400F/200C/Gas Mark 6. Lift the wings to a non-stick roasting tray and reserve the remaining sauce. Cook the wings in the oven for half an hour.

Roasted chicken wings are rested and cooled

Take the wings from the oven, lift them to your (washed) chopping board or a plate, cover and leave to rest and cool for at least fifteen minutes. (Slightly longer is fine as the meat is going to be reheated anyway)

Dried noodles nest is added to a pot of boiling water

Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil then carefully lift it from the heat. Add the egg noodles to steep and rehydrate for five minutes. Do however check the pack for possibly different instructions.

Noodles are carefully stirred in the water to ensure they separate

Stir the noodles carefully but regularly as they rehydrate to ensure they are separating.

Chicken wings meat and skin is plucked from the bones

With your hands, pluck the meat and skin from the bones of the wings. It's entirely up to yourself whether you wish to include the skin in the dish but it should be nice and crisp, so as most people would normally eat it anyway, I did include it on this occasion.

Onion half is chopped in to wedges

Cut your onion half in to three segments. This will allow you to separate each of them in to small leaves.

Noodles are thoroughly drained through a colander

Drain the noodles well through a colander.

Starting to stir fry onion leaves

Bring your wok up to a high heat and add the oil, followed soon after by the onion.

Reserved chop suey sauce is added to wok with onions

Remember the chop suey sauce has been in contact with raw chicken meat. It is imperative therefore that it be brought up to a very high heat to eliminate the risk of food poisoning. Pour it in to the wok with the onion and stir fry briefly until it is bubbling.

Chicken wings meat is added to wok with chop suey sauce and onions

The chicken meat and skin goes in to the wok next to be stir fried and reheated for thirty seconds or so.

Drained noodles are added to wok

When you add the noodles to the wok, use tongs to lift and mix them through the chicken and sauce to ensure everything is evenly combined. You are then ready to plate up and enjoy your dish.

Cooking tongs are used to lift and mix noodles through chicken and sauce