After a challenging journey home from Wandsworth, battling a suitcase from one busy train to a tube station that was closed due to "person under train" (honestly SO SELFISH, if you're going to top yourself, please do it in your own home where it won't affect thousands of people's lives) ANYWAYYYYYY. By the time I get home it is seriously later than I had planned to be home, and my OCD control freak nature seriously kicks in as I fly about the house, and fly back out to Tesco.
I decided to cook lamb and turkey with all the trimmings- and alot (alot) of mulled wine.
This is the most amount of people I have ever cooked for (9- not exactly feeding the 5,000 but still, rather ambitious I feel) As usual I've bought too much, spent too much, and attempting to carry too much home. ALL IS OK.
OK, so meat first. Fortunately I've selected two joints that take the same amount of time. I get some advice of Heston for my lamb- make ALOT of incisions (diagonally- this is VERY important apparently) to cover more area of the meat, stuff it with rosemary and garlic cloves. COVER with more rosemary, BRUSH the joint with oil (still cracks me up, no I did not use a hairbrush) and season with rock salt. Bang it in the oven for 1 hour 40. Bish bash bosh (okay stop that now, I sound like Jamie Oliver, even though I do love him, I'd much rather be Nigella) Turkey similar story expect I covered it in peppercorns with a muslin sheet to keep the moisture in as we all know turkey gets a wee bit dry.
Roast potatoes are, if I do say so myself, my speciality. The trick is to parboil the potatoes for ten mins WITH the peeled skins. Discard the skins and water, put the parboiled potatoes back in and shake to rough them up, then stick in a heated tray with 4tablespoons of oil. Keep the roasting tin over a hob whilst putting them, so they should sizzle. Rosemary, garlic and sea salt (apparently the only seasoning I seem to use...) and whack them in the oven for 1hr on 200 degrees. Stick in the parsnips and carrots with honey after 15 mins.
My timing is one of my strong points so Marine arrives just as all the stressful stuff is done. PRESENTATION however, NAHT so hot on this. So Marine offers to arrange the cheeses (being French, this is her field of expertise) and the pate and olives for starters. By this point i'm already a little drunk.
Ruby and Trent then arrive and Ruby has brought a HOMEMADE chocolate tart. This pretty much puts my Mr Kipling's mince pies to shame.
Rachel and Dan, now this is the best part of the night, have brought us Reese's peanut butter cups!!! Fond fond memories. So wrong, but so ridiculously right! THANKS GUYS.
Kate turns up with more mulled wine MASSIVE SMILEY FACE :).
Paul, last but not least, skillfully managed to avoid any prepping for me and helping out, clever, very clever...
Dinner went down a treat, with not too many left overs- I even did sprouts (the word makes me ill), which Kate helped me prepare as I was not quite sure how to prepare them. She kindly reminds me to crisscross the bottoms, then it all came flooding back, my job as a child was to sit with a bowl and crisscross the sprouts on Christmas Eve. I guess I blocked the trauma out. But Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without sprouts.
Ruby's dessert was beautiful. Went down beautifully with the brandy butter I bought. Super. The night was followed with alot more wine, and a few rounds of celebrity head... hosted by Dan. I of course got "Monica from friend syndrome" RULES CONTROL THE FUN. Jesus, someone shut me up.
I love my friends. Thankyou for coming round, for bringing festive treats and for your beautiful company. You are ACE.
HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE.