Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Christmas Meal Tips

Christmas Tips From Perfect Pans


General Tricks & Tips
·        Plan your meal now. Write everything down, so that you don’t forget about the important things. Include all meals, breakfast, lunch, afternoon treats, evening meals and late night munchies. It is always a great idea to have some treats throughout the day, such as homemade Cornish pasties. Don’t gorge on snacks during the festive season. Leave some room for the main meals. It can be tempting to snack and pick all day. Try to be disciplined

·         Look at alternative Christmas recipes. Try out some new recipes in advance. Practice makes perfect. Look at interesting ways to present dishes. Work out a Christmas timetable. Map everything out, particularly on Christmas day. Start times for the turkey, carrots, etc... Decide when you are going to eat and work back from there. Outsource or delegate. Get other members of the family to help out. Don’t burn yourself out. Keep things as simple as possible. Don’t be too ambitious, by taking on too much. Plan your menu and prep as much as possible in advance. Keep things as simple as possible. Don’t be too ambitious, by taking on too much

·         Work out your Christmas budget. There is nothing worse than over stretching yourself. It doesn’t need to cost a fortune. Shop around and get good deals. Look at online deals. Keep the costs down without short changing your guests. Ask yourself how much you really need to buy. Is everything necessary? The temptation is to fill the fridge. Try and avoid this. We tend to buy non essential items and really expensive wine. This does not have to be the case. Make sure that you use your leftovers creatively. Make a Turkey and Vegetable Chowder on Stephens’s day

·         Get the white wine in the fridge. There is nothing worse than warm white wine. In addition, get your red wine up to room temperature. Match the food with wine. Once you have decided on your festive menu, get some advice from your off licence or look online. There are some great websites that match food with wine. You can also buy all your wines online. Try


·         Make up a batch of mulled wine. There will always be people coming and going. A slow cooker is a great way to keep this warm without over cooking. You can also have some tasty nibbles such as miniature mince pies, biscuits, pastries. Light bites and treats



·         Make sure you have all your vital ingredients. Get that checklist out. Divide the list into perishables and non perishables. Buy your perishables in advance. There are many other vital jobs that get overlooked such as clearing out the fridge and freezer. Make sure that they are in good working order. Sharpen your knives, clean your over, and make sure you have enough pots, pans and roasting dishes. . Lay the Christmas table on 24th. Another job out of the way.


·         Make sure that you have enough equipment. Pots, pans, casserole dishes, knives, forks, plates, glasses, etc...It’s not a bad idea to have a spare hob, as there is so much to cook on Christmas day. You can buy portable induction hobs for £30. If you do buy an induction hob, make sure that you have pots and pans that are suitable for induction. Check our our Diamond range for quality Induction cookware.


Prepare the Turkey in advance


·         When choosing a turkey, allow about 500g for each person (on the bone).  This will give you enough for the meal with some left over.  So a 4kg turkey will feed about 6-8 people.  Don’t forget to make sure you have the right size tray for your bird and that it will fit in the oven. I made the mistake of using a plastic tray once. Oops... Don’t make the same mistake as me


·         Do not put warm stuffing into poultry. Do not over fill the cavity when stuffing your turkey, only stuff it ¾ so that the heat can penetrate so the bird can cook properly. Many cookery writers recommend not stuffing the bird prior to cooking. The stuffing can be done separately


·         Now weigh your turkey and calculate the cooking time.  For small birds allow 20 minutes per kg plus 70 minutes over, for birds over 4kg allow 20 minutes per kg plus 90 minutes over.  Cover the bird loosely with foil.  Remove for the last 30 minutes of cooking to brown the skin.  Pierce the flesh between the base and the thigh (as this is the last place to cook). If the juices are clear, the bird is cooked. If there are any traces of pink in the juices cook for another 15 minutes and test again.

 The best place to get cooking time for your turkey is :

·         To guarantee your turkey is moist and juicy, rest covered tightly with foil for 30 minutes before serving.

·         An alternative to a whole turkey is to buy a turkey crown. Preheat the oven to 200°C/ 180°C fan/Gas 6. Make a nice stuffing. Open out the turkey, skin side down. Put the stuffing down the centre and fold over each side of the turkey crown to enclose it. Tie up with 4-6 pieces of string. In a bowl, mix together a rub/glaze (40ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped, 1 tsp fresh basil, finely chopped, Salt and pepper, to season). Place the turkey crown in a roasting tin and brush over the run/glaze. Using your hand spread a generous amount of the rosemary mixture under the breast skin. Place the turkey crown in the oven and calculate your time - 20 minutes per 450g (1lb) plus 20 minutes, so a 4.5kg crown should take three hours and 40 minutes. Cover loosely with foil, which should be removed about 40 minutes before the end of the cooking time. The turkey crown will cook much more quickly than a whole turkey, so make sure to keep basting

Prepare and cook your ham in advance

If you have a boneless ham, cooked it and slice it when chilled. Line a roasting tray with tinfoil and place the slices into the tray. Brush the ham with a generous amount of honey & mustard glaze. Cover with more tinfoil. Place in the fridge over night and reheat on Christmas day. 30 minutes at 180 degrees should be sufficient.

Prepare your Vegetables in advance

  • To save time on Christmas day, all vegetables can be prepared in advance.
  • Brussels sprouts can be mashed. Use some ground nutmeg, pepper, salt and cream.
  • The carrots can be caramelised, using sugar and butter.
  • The Perfect Roast Potatoes
    • The roast potatoes can also be parboiled and finished off on the day. For the best roasties, duck or goose fat give a really delicious flavour. Buy good quality old potatoes (not new potatoes). Cut the potatoes into even sizes. Peel them just before roasting and do not leave them soaking in water as they will absorb the water and become soggy.
    • Preheat the oven to 220C/Gas 7
    • Place the potatoes in a saucepan, cover with cold water, add a sprinkle of salt and bring to the boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
    • Drain the potatoes in a colander. Gently shake the colander to fluff the outside of the potatoes
    • Heat the fat or oil in a roasting tin until very hot but not burning. Carefully tip the potatoes into the hot fat. Using a tablespoon coat each potato with the hot fat in the tin, this will help prevent the potatoes from sticking. Return the roasting tin to the hot oven and roast until golden brown and crisp turning the potatoes from time to time. This will take about 45 minutes. Serve immediately.

  • Roast Root Vegetables.
    • This is a lovely way to prepare root vegetables. Vibrant colours and amazing flavours.

o    Lightly steam 5 carrots, 3 turnips and 2 sweet potatoes or butternut squash, cut into 2cm until part cooked. Combine 1litre of cider, 100g brown sugar, 50g butter, ½ nutmeg and ½ tsp allspice in a non-stick saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring frequently. Add steamed vegetables and simmer for 5 minutes. Add 75g cranberries (or redcurrants) and continue cooking until liquid is reduced to a syrupy glaze and vegetables are tender. If syrup becomes too thick before vegetables are cooked, thin with a small amount of cider. When vegetables are cooked, transfer to a serving dish using a slotted spoon. Season to taste and pour glaze over top.

·         Creamy Au Gratin, Dauphinoise Potatoes. This is a lovely alternative to roast potatoes, as the roasties and turkey can often be very dry. Plenty of moisture and amazing flavours. Why not sprinkle with some cranberries

-Courtesy of Andrew Rudd


Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Spicy Butternut Squash Soup

Chef Andrew Rudd's Butternut Squash Soup Recipe



  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled and cut into 2.5cm chunks
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 small green chilli deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1tbsp grated root ginger
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Juice 1 lime
  • Fresh coriander, to serve
  • Natural yoghurt, to serve
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C /gas mark 6. Place the butternut squash in a large roasting tray and toss in olive oil to coat. Roast for 30-40 minutes, or until soft and starting to caramelise.
  2. Meanwhile heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger. Cook for 4-6 minutes then add 1.2 litres water and the cumin seeds, coriander and turmeric. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat until the squash is cooked.
  3. Add the squash to the liquid and blend until smooth. Reheat before serving and season to taste with salt and pepper and lime juice. Serve with a scattering of fresh coriander and a swirl of yoghurt to taste.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Perfect Pans Crispy Jacket Potato Soup


5 Jacket potatoes, scrubbed well and dried
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
4 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 cup White cheddar cheese and Red Leicester  Grated  (any variety is fine)
1/2 cup spring onions, chopped
1/2 cup sour cream

For the potato skins:
Reserved potato skins (from above)
Olive oil, for brushing
Sea salt and pepper
For topping:
1  cup white cheddar cheese and Red Cheddar Grated
1/2 cup spring onions, chopped
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups Bacon Lardons


For the soup:

  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees
  • Poke tiny holes in each potato multiple times with a fork, and place the potatoes in a Perfect Pans Roasting Pan. Lightly brush Olive oil and salt (or other seasonings if desired.)
  • Bake the potatoes until fully cooked and softened, about 1 hour.
  • Once fully cooked, remove the potatoes from the oven and let cool completely (about 1 hour or so). Remove from roaster and set aside. You will use the oil mixture again later.
  • Once cooled, slice each potato into two pieces and carefully peel back the skins, removing the skins intact as best as possible. (If you plan on using them for the crunchy potato skins, this is helpful.  If you don’t plan on using them, just discard the skins.)
  • Place the potato “insides” in a Perfect Pans Large Stock pot.  Using a potato masher or large wooden spoon, mash the potato into small pieces.
  • Slowly fold in the milk, cheese and butter.
  • Add the salt and pepper to taste. Cook the mixture until thickened, about 8-10 minutes on medium heat.
  • Place bacon pieces into a Perfect Pans Sauté Pan. Fry until browned.
  • Add 1/2 cup of white cheddar into the mixture.
  • Remove the pan from the heat.
For the potato skin topping:

  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  • Place the reserved, potato skin pieces and skins back into the Perfect Pans Roaster. Mix with oil that was used originally until coated.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or so, or until potato skins are crispy. We advise checking them quite often since oven temperatures may vary.
  • Finally, spoon in your potato soup add a dollop of sour cream, cheese, potato skin slices, onion and bacon to taste.

Enjoy this winter warmer with the added bonus of little effort clean up. All of Perfect Pans Cookware is a breeze to clean with its non-stick wipe clean surface!

Get the 6 Piece Holiday Cookware Collection from our website by clicking here!

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Lancashire Hot Pot

A great dish for the whole family! Simple, one pan recipe.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes

Yield: Serves 4


·         2 oz/ 55g beef dripping or lard

·         8 middle neck lamb chops, on the bone

·         ½ lb/ 225g onions, skinned and finely sliced

·         2 oz/ 55g butter, melted

·         2 lb/ 900g potatoes, peeled and thickly sliced

·         4 lambs kidneys, cored and sliced (optional)

·         1 carrot, peeled and thickly sliced

·         Salt and pepper

·         1 litre of beef or chicken stock

·         1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce


Serves 4

·         Pre heat the oven to 400°F/200°C/Gas 6

·         In a large frying pan, melt the dripping or lard and heat until hot but not smoking. Quickly colour the chops on both side, remove from the fat, and drain on kitchen paper.

·         Add the sliced onions to the hot fat and cook quickly, stirring constantly until softened but not coloured. Remove from the fat and drain on kitchen paper.

·         In a Perfect Pans Saute Pan pour half the butter in to the bottom then cover with a layer of sliced potato, cover with half the onions, season with salt and pepper. Lay the chops on the top of the onion, don't worry if the bones stick up, this was traditional in Lancashire Hotpot. If using, lay the sliced kidneys over the chops, add the carrot, cover with the remaining onions, season.

·         Pour in enough stock to come two thirds way up the casserole dish, dont worry if you have some left over you can always top up during cooking. Add the Worcestershire sauce.

·         Cover with another layer of overlapping potatoes, ensuring the surface is completely covered. Brush the potato with the remaining melted butter, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

·         Cover the pot with a tightly fitting lid and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.

·         After 30 minutes, reduce the heat to 350°F/180°C/Gas 4 and cook for a further 1½ hours. Check from time to time to make sure the casserole isn't drying out, top up with stock or water as necessary.

·         Remove the lid from the pan and cook until the potatoes on the surface are brown, remove from the oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Serve on hot plates with fresh, seasonal vegetables.



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Friday, 28 September 2012

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Hey everyone, with fall upon us now we have gone for lovely desert comfort food that is great for parties and holidays. As some of you may know, one of our staff is American, so we have posted a recipe that incorporates one of America's Autumnal favourites, Pumpkin Spice Cake. Now because tinned pumpkin can be difficult to find, she has given us a suggestion of using sweet potatos instead. Alternatively if you want to try pumpkin and can't seem to find it in the stores, you can puree' fresh pumpkin or buy it online on Amazon, or American food stores.

Ingredients for Pumpkin Spice Cake
  •  310 g bleached all-purpose flour
  •  30 g cornstarch
  •  20 g baking powder
  •  3 g salt
  •  4 g ground ginger
  •  2 g ground cinnamon
  •  2 g ground nutmeg
  •  1 g ground allspice
  •  1 g ground cloves
  •  235 ml milk
  •  3 large eggs
  •  10 ml vanilla extract
  •  225 g unsalted butter, softened until easily spreadable
  • Special Ingredient--
  • 300g Tinned Pumpkin. Can be difficult to find, but Sainsbury's and Watrose have it. If not bake 2 or 3 sweet potatos until soft and remove flesh their from jackets
  •  290 g dark brown sugar

Cake Method

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and lightly flour a Small Roasting Pan. Whisk dry ingredients and spices in a large bowl. Mix milk, eggs and vanilla extract in a 2-cup measuring cup.
2. Beat softened butter into dry ingredients, first on low, then medium, until mixture forms pebble-sized pieces. Add about 1/3 of the milk mixture, pumpkin or sweet potatos and beat on low until smooth. Add remaining milk mixture in two stages; beat on medium speed until batter is just smooth. Add the sugar; beat until just incorporated, about 30 seconds. Pour batter into pan.
3. Bake until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the cake's center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Set pan on a wire rack; let cool for 5 minutes. Run a knife around the pan perimeter and turn cake onto rack. Let cool while you make the frosting.

Frosting Indredients

1 package of cream cheese, softened
32g cup of butter, softened
2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
380 cups of Confectioners' Sugar

Mix all of the ingredients together until fluffy and frost your cooled cake!
Works great for cupcakes too!


We used this great online conversion chart for Cup to Gram Conversions.



A £20.00 value!


Friday, 14 September 2012

Toad in the Hole

Toad in the Hole


Serves 4


9 oz (225g) Plain Flour
9FL oz (225 ml) Milk
3 Eggs
2 fl oz (55 ml) Water
3 tbsps Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Pre heat the oven to (220°C)
  • Brown the sausages in the Crafond Roasting Tray on the hob, (for approx 5 minutes on a medium heat),
  • Then make up the batter by sifting the flour into a bowl and making a well in the centre. Break the egg into it and beat, gradually incorporating the flour, and then beat in the milk, 2 fl oz (50 ml) water and seasoning (an electric hand whisk will do this in seconds).
  • There is no need to leave the batter to stand, so make it when you're ready to cook the pudding.
  • Pour the batter into the Roasting Tin. Put the roasting tray into the oven on the highest or medium shelf.
  • The pudding will take 25-30 minutes to rise and become crisp and golden.
  • Serve as soon as possible: if it has to wait around too long it loses its crunchiness.
*****Tip--You can even make this recipe in our Best Selling Saute Pans!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Leasa's Special Bread Pudding and a New Website!


Bread Pudding·         25g/1oz butter,

·         Full Loaf of Sliced Brioche

·         50g/2oz sultanas---optional

·         350ml/12fl oz whole milk

·         50ml/2fl oz double cream--optional

·         2 free-range eggs

·         40g granulated sugar

·         2-3 tsps of Vanilla Essence

·         2-3 tbsp of Brown Sugar


Preparation method

1.     We suggest using one of the following pans for this dish: Small Roaster, 24 cm Cocotte, Rectangular cocotte, and even a 28cm Saute pan!

2.     Spread each slice with on one side with butter, then cut into triangles.

3.     Arrange a layer of Brioche, buttered-side up, in the bottom of the pan, then add a layer of sultanas or other fruit if preferred and sprinkle sugar. Repeat the layers of bread, sultanas and sugar, until you have used up all of the brioche. Finish with a layer of Brioche and sprinkle with brown sugar, then set aside. Do not put sultanas on the top layer.

4.     Gently warm the milk and cream in a pan over a low heat to scalding point. Don't let it boil.

5.     Crack the eggs into a bowl, add three quarters of the sugar, Vanilla Essence and lightly whisk until pale.

6.     Add the warm milk and cream mixture and stir well, then strain the custard into a bowl.

7.     Pour the custard over the prepared bread layers and sprinkle with remaining sugar. Leave to stand for 30 minutes.

8.     Preheat the oven to 180C/355F/Gas 4.

9.     Place the pan into the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the custard has set and the top is golden-brown.

Will Post more pictures soon!

Check out our new website on! We have fully updated it and are slowly adding new items daily for our Diamond Cookware line.