Pork and Chestnut Forcemeat Balls

You can roast a turkey in much the same way as you would a chicken, but it is probably better to cover the bird with a buttered cloth (cheesecloth or muslin that has been dipped in melted butter) rather than to spread butter under the skin. At 180°C / 350°F / Mark 4, allow 3–3½ hours for a 6–8 lb / 2.70–3.60 kg bird, and 3¼-A½ hours for a 10–14 lb / 4.50–6.30 kg bird. Stuffing the body cavity is not recommended; serve with these forcemeat balls instead.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb / 455 g chestnuts
  • milk
  • 6 oz / 170 g belly pork
  • 1 turkey liver
  • 2 tbsp soft breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp brandy

Method

To peel the chestnuts, make a slit at the tip of each nut, and put them under a hot grill or in a heavy frying pan to roast them until the shell becomes brittle enough to remove. Peel off the bitter brown skin underneath, and cook the chestnuts in milk until they are tender. Remove the skin from the belly pork and cut the pork into chunks. Remove any sinews and discoloured parts from the liver and mince or process it with the pork. Drain the chestnuts and, depending on whether you like a smooth or more textured forcemeat, sieve or process the chestnuts or break them up with a fork. Mix with the meats and the rest of the ingredients. Form into balls with wet hands, and bake alongside the turkey for the last 30–40 minutes.

,