CHRISTMAS TURKEY, TWO WAYS: BRAD CARTER’S TURKEY SHAWARMA & ALL THE TRIMMINGS

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This year, our tidings of comfort and joy come to you in the form of two festive, fire-cooked recipes for your turkey, although there’s no reason you can’t experiment with these methods on whatever your chosen centrepiece is for your Christmas dinner table.

So… which of our Chefs of Christmas Present will take pride of place in your Christmas spread: Richard Turner’s classic turkey dinner, or Brad Carter’s spin on it? Make sure you tag us in your creations on Instagram — find us at @meatopiauk.

Brad Carter’s restaurant, Carters of Moseley in Birmingham, is a one Michelin star joint with much acclaim. During lockdown, Brad pivoted from fine dining to open his #OneStarDönerBar, serving some knockout kebabs. His Christmas special is the aptly-named “Christmas Ends In Tiers”, the recipe for which he has kindly shared with us for you all to recreate at home. For the method, click here.

Want to check out Rich’s classic Smoked Turkey Crown recipe? Click here.

Brad Carter’s Turkey Shawarma & All the Trimmings

INGREDIENTS

For the Turkey shawarma:
2 turkey thighs, boneless
250g bacon sausage meat
5g pine needles
3g salt
1 tsp garlic, minced
150g duck fat, warmed to liquid
1/2 tsp english mustard powder
1 tsp sage, chopped
1 tsp rosemary, chopped
1 tsp seaweed flakes
30ml soy sauce
Pinch of ground all-spice

For the Turkish Pide bread:
560g plain flour
7g dried yeast
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
375ml warm water
Oil to grease the bowl for rising
2 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp nigella seeds
½ tsp sea salt flakes
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp olive oil

For the Salad:
1 small white cabbage, finely shredded
12 sprouts, finely shredded
6 spring onions, finely shredded
Salt & pepper to taste

For the Cranberry Hot Sauce:
6 red peppers
200g cranberries
2 scotch bonnets
2 garlic cloves
100ml maple syrup
50ml apple cider vinegar
Salt to taste

For the Paxo Mayonnaise:
250g Kewpie mayonnaise
25g boxed stuffing mix

METHOD
Start with the turkey. Add the thighs to a bowl and coat with all the Shawarma ingredients, apart from the sausage meat. Marinate at room temperature for 2— 4 hours.

After marinating, use a large skewer to skewer the turkey thighs, layering with the sausage meat in between. Repeat until all the meat is used up.

To make the pide breads, combine the flour, yeast, sugar and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre, then add the water. Mix together with a wooden spoon, then use your hands to bring the dough together.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 15 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
Lightly grease a bowl with oil, and place the dough in with a light coating of oil. Cover with a piece of cling film and set in a warm place away from any drafts for about an hour, or until doubled in size.

Place a baking tray on the middle shelf of the oven and preheat to 230°C.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and cut into 3 equal pieces. Flatten slightly with your hands. Place each piece on a separate piece of baking paper and with floured hands, stretch each piece into a rectangle.
Cover with a damp cloth and set in the same warm, draft-free place for about 15 minutes.

Using a fingertip or the end of a wooden spoon dipped in flour, poke a few holes in the bread to collect some of the olive oil/egg yolk combination.

Whisk the egg yolk and oil together in a bowl and brush the mixture over the top of each pide.
Combine the sesame and nigella seeds and sprinkle over the top of each bread. Follow with sea salt flakes.
Remove the tray from the hot oven and slide one pide onto it. Return to the oven and cook for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
Repeat with the remaining breads.

For the hot sauce, set up a smoker to around 120°C (if you haven’t got a smoker, set an oven to 180°C). Add the peppers to the smoker for 50 minutes (or 15 in the oven) until soft, then set aside. Add the cranberries to a tray along with the scotch bonnets and smoke (or cook) for 10-15 minutes, until softened. Put the peppers and scotch bonnets into a bowl and cover with cling film to steam and allow the skins to peel away.

Now set the smoker to a direct, medium heat for grilling the turkey kebab, or fire up your grill.

Remove the cling film and peel the peppers, discarding the core, seeds and skins. Do the same with the scotch bonnets, but wear some gloves or wash your hands well after. Add both to a blender with the rest of the hot sauce ingredients and blitz for about 2 minutes until smooth. Check the seasoning and set aside.

To make the stuffing mayo, add the Kewpie and the boxed stuffing mix to a blender (or blend with a hand blender) until incorporated. Set aside.

To cook the turkey kebab, place the skewer in the smoker (or grill) and cook for around 20-25 minutes, continuously turning the kebab to ensure even cooking and colour. Probe the meat near the skewer at the thickest part — when it reaches 65c-68°C, set it aside to rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes.

For the salad, add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl, mix well, and season to taste. Do this about 10 minutes before you want to eat so that the salad keeps its crunch.

To plate up the dish, hold the kebab skewer at one end and rest the other end on a cutting board. Slice as thinly as possible into slices. Cut a cavity into each pide bread and fill with the meat. Add the stuffing mayo and the hot sauce and top with salad.

Devour immediately!