Make your own cranberry sauce it is simple to do and you can make it taste special by adding a dash of sherry or port to the cranberries as you cook them up in a saucepan. I cook mine until the cranberries pop but not to the stage where they fall apart and disintegrate, that gives the sauce more texture. You will find that if you have any of this left over it goes really well with the cold meats after Christmas.
Bored with carrots? You can cook your carrots in orange juice instead of water but keep an eye on them as if you are doing them in a saucepan the juice is more likely to burn, or just add a little orange juice to the cooking water.
Make the stuffing that you serve more interesting, by adding dried cranberries or chopped up dried apricots. Or you can make your own easy version of chestnut stuffing by adding chopped up vacuum-packed chestnuts that you can buy in the supermarket to a bought stuffing mix. I shape the made up stuffing into individual servings before cooking it, as it cooks more evenly than cooking it in a tray or dish.
Roast potatoes are nice with a little bit of fresh rosemary in the roasting tray with them. Large sized potatoes I would pre-cook by boiling for a short time but I usually get away with cooking my roast potatoes (medium to small in size) directly in the oven. I coat them in olive oil by putting a thin layer in the tray and then rolling them over in that before sprinkling them with a small amount of sea salt. If you want the potatoes to have more texture then shake them about in the tray when they are well on the way to being cooked, but take care not to splash hot oil on yourself. The TV chef Jamie Oliver has a trick with roast potatoes where he squashes them down at the later stages of cooking, I might do that occasionally for a Sunday lunch but think I am too busy on Christmas Morning to bother with that.
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Growing Your Own Fruit and Vegetables
We grow our own fruit and vegetables for our meals for as much of the year as we can. Without a greenhouse we have to buy shop food in the winter months but in the spring, summer and autumn we often have enough to share with family and friends.
Read about growing your fruit and vegetables here on my growing your own food pages.