Your Christmas, sorted: the bird

by Great British Chefs 1 December 2021

No traditional Christmas dinner is complete without a beautiful bird plonked down in the middle of the table. These are seven of our favourites.

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For most of us, the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about a Christmas dinner is a beautifully bronzed roasted bird sat in the middle of the table. There are a few different things to think about when deciding on what bird you're going to cook on the big day, namely how many people you're cooking for, what sides it will pair well with and how traditional you want to be. But once those decisions have been made, it's time to start choosing a recipe! We've picked out some amazing Christmas bird recipes for inspiration.

Classic Christmas turkey

There isn't a bird more emblematic of the Christmas season than a turkey, and when it's roasted until the skin is perfectly crisp but the meat is still beautifully tender, as Dominic Chapman does in this recipe, it's easy to see why it remains a go-to.

Gourmet Christmas turkey

There are lots of ways to roast a turkey to perfection but in this recipe, Alyn Williams chooses to butcher the bird beforehand, rather than roasting it whole, to ensure precise cooking and to remove the risk of dry breast meat.

Ultimate Christmas goose dinner

If you find yourself gandering at a traditional goose instead of a turkey this Christmas, this is the recipe for you. Charlie Hibbert uses every part of the bird in his Christmas goose dinner recipe, collecting the fat to roast potatoes in and combining his sprouts with the leg meat before finally making a gravy from the carcass.

Roast goose with citrus and swede

For those seeking something a bit different from the classic Christmas goose recipe, Pascal Aussignac pairs the bird with mango and a zingy citrus sauce to cut through the richness. It's then filled with a Swiss chard stuffing rich with Armagnac for a boozy kick.

One-pot Christmas poussin

A twist on the classic Christmas dinner, this one-pot poussin recipe gives each person sat around the table an individual pot with their very own poussin, potatoes and Brussels sprouts, giving everyone the chance to carve their own bird. Perfect for smaller gatherings.

Braised pheasant with sloe gin and chestnuts

This simple braised pheasant dish is all cooked inside a large casserole dish to ensure that the birds stay perfectly moist, while the addition of both sloe gin and walnuts introduces flavours synonymous with the festive period.

Five-bird roast

The ultimate centrepiece if you're wanting to really impress a crowd at Christmas, a five-bird roast is the stuff of legend. James Mackenzie's take on the classic features duck, chicken, grouse, pheasant and partridge, all wrapped up in Parma ham.

Choose the rest of your Christmas dinner: