The countdown to cooking and serving Christmas lunch or dinner is well and truly under way now. For most of us, that means there will be a bird of some variety gently roasting in the oven and an array of side dishes competing for space on the hob.
It can be a bit of juggling act, getting everything cooked and ready to eat at the same time. We have tips and suggestions from some of the countrys most trusted cooks and chefs and we have also delved into the Irish Times recipe archive to bring you some of our most popular Christmas dinner recipes.
First, a three-course foolproof dinner from Paul Flynn, Lilly Higgins and Aoife Noonan. And below, you will also find lots of other inspirational recipes and tips for a great Christmas feast: the ultimate guide to starters and desserts; turkey, gravy, stuffing and sprouts; and delicious vegetarian options.
Starter: Paul Flynns potted salmonServes six
Potted salmon. Photograph: Harry Weir Photography
Ingredients1 egg, plus 3 egg yolks300ml cream200ml milk1 tbsp horseradish sauce100g smoked salmon, skin removed and finely dicedSalt and pepper
Method1 Preheat an oven to 140 degrees Celsius, or equivalent. Whisk the eggs together in a bowl then add the cream and milk, horseradish and chopped salmon, then season with salt and pepper.
2 Ladle the mixture between the ramekins, making sure you stir while you ladle so that the salmon is evenly distributed.
3 Boil a kettle and place the ramekins in a baking tray.
4 Pour the boiling water around the ramekins so it reaches half-way up the sides.
5 Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the mixture is just set but with a little wobble in the centre.
6 Remove from the tray and allow them to cool before refrigerating.
7 Serve at room temperature, with pickled cucumber.
Main: Paul Flynns roast turkey crown with ras-al-hanout, carrots, dates and almonds
Roast turkey crown, ras-al-hanout, carrots, dates and almonds. Photograph: Harry Weir
Serves sixIngredients2kg turkey crown1 tbsp ras-al-hanout spice mixZest of half an orange1 tsp thyme leavesSalt and black pepper140g soft butter20ml chicken stock6 medium carrots3 tbsp olive oil2 bay leavesJuice of 1 orange100g whole blanched almonds8 medjool dates, stoned and quartered
Method1 Set the oven to 185 degrees.
2 Add the ras-al-hanout, orange, thyme, salt and pepper into the butter and mix well.
3 With your fingers, or a spatula, gently loosen the skin from the meat of the turkey, taking care not to tear it.
4 Push the butter underneath the skin, making sure all the meat is covered.  Leave some butter for the outside of the bird and smear it all over the skin.
5 Place the turkey on a high trivet in the centre of a deep roasting tray. This will allow the carrots to go underneath later.
6 Pour the chicken stock into the roasting tin, cover the turkey with foil and cook for one hour. Meanwhile, peel and top the carrots, then cut them at an angle, one centimetre thick, then set aside.
7 Remove the foil from the bird, baste it well, then add the carrots, olive oil and bay leaves to the tray and put back in the oven.
8 Cook the turkey for 25 minutes uncovered. It should be golden with a light spicy crust. 
9 Remove it from the tray, along with the trivet, then cover with foil and allow to rest.
10 Add the orange juice and the almonds to the carrots, then return the tray to the oven for 20 minutes, turning the carrots once or twice. 
11 When the carrots are soft, and the almonds golden, add the dates and stir through. 
12 Slice the turkey and serve with glazed carrots and almonds.
Side: Lilly Higginss Balsamic roast brussel sprouts
500g sprouts100g grapes2 tbsp balsamic vinegar1 tbsp olive oil1 tbsp honey200g pecan nuts, toasted and roughly chopped
1 Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Place the sprouts, grapes, vinegar and oil in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper then gently mix.
2 Tip on to a roasting tray and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes till the grapes are soft and almost bursting and the sprouts are nicely golden in places.
3 Drizzle over the honey and toss to coat everything. Place on a serving platter and scatter with the pecan nuts, serve immediately.
Dessert:  Aoife Noonan’s Christmas ice-cream cake
Christmas ice-cream cake. Photograph: Harry Weir
Serves 12

You may also like