great tasting lamb arriving tomorrow morning fresh from otter valley farms in devon.
J Seal Butchers
Local Butchers Based In Barnes Village, SW London
The House Wine's Guide To Christmas Wine
Everyone wants bubbles at Christmas, some of us want to spoil ourselves and have luxury champagne and some of us just want the bubbles to flow all day.
La Jara, Sparkling Pinot Grigio, Veneto, Italy – if you are a House Wine faithful then you will know this wine, it’s probably the best loved wine on our list and for good reason. Great tasting, great looking and kind to your system with its lowish alcohol and lack of additive nasties perfect for all day partying. £14.50 buy
Sorello Bronca Prosecco, Veneto, Italy, Decanter Magazine rated one of their Proseccos as the best around, they are a class act, producing exceptional organic wines. We have standard size bottles but check out our beautiful Magnums – fabulous for a party or a really handsome gift. £13.50 buy
Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve, Champagne, France - the Charles Heidsieck Champagnes are almost a well-kept secret and certainly worth discovering. Their Brut Reserve is aged for much longer than the average non-vintage Champagne and with the highest permissible amount of reserve wines it is complex but fresh, more expensive than a supermarket bogof but truly delicious. The rrp is £42 but we are offering it for £36.50 buy.
We can all sink in a sea of rich, sweet, stickiness over the holidays so here are some wines to lift your mood, they are light, crisp and cleansing – great with simple, fresh-tasting fish or veggie canapés.
Picpoul de Pinet, La Croix Gratiot, Languedoc, France – classically paired with oysters, Picpoul is very fashionable and on every good restaurant wine list, it has great zing but coming from the sunny Languedoc its zest is balanced with some of those sunny southern flavours. £8.95 buy
Beaujolais Blanc, Chateau de Lavernette, France – a really rare wine from a beautiful organic vineyard, only tiny amounts of white Beaujolais are made. This is a Chardonnay, but at the crisp refreshing end of the spectrum, it will stand up to dishes with a bit of buttery, creaminess and would be great with roquefort. There isn’t much of it so be quick! £12.50 buy
Langenlois (The Squirrel), Gruner Vetliner, Weszeli, Austria – we have been eagerly anticipating the arrival of these amazing organic wines, they are brand new to us and to the UK. Gruner Vetliner is known for being a fabulous food wine with it’s combination of green fruit flavours overlaid with a bit of spice. The philosophy of the Weszeli vineyard to support nature is beautifully reflected in the original packaging. Jancis Robinson’s assessment was ‘very good’ can’t argue with that. £14.50 buy
THE MAIN EVENT
So, enough with the light and frothy, time for the main event where most of us are looking for something reassuringly traditional and robust. Christmas dinner (or lunch) is often the opportunity to open special bottles of wine, wine that has been thought too good to drink the rest of the year, but because the Christmas meal has such an array of flavours, older or more tannic wines are often not the best choice you need something with a bit more fruit and flavour.
Macôn Clessé – Guillemot Michel, Macon, France – new to us this year is this gorgeous white Burgundy from the Macon. Perfect for Christmas Day, for the white wine drinkers it will take them through from smoked salmon to turkey and beyond (it is not oaken). Not from one of the classic Burgundy villages but this is a wine of real class made from superb quality grapes biodynamically farmed. It won’t disappoint. £16.50 buy
M3 Chardonnay, Shaw + Smith, Adelaide Hills, Australia – this is one of the new breed of Australian Chardonnays that are doing much to rehabilitate the poor misunderstood Chardonnay grape. This wine does see some oak but the wine is made to emphasise its not over-ripe fruit flavours. It has great acidity combined with satisfying complexity, you can sense when drinking it that no expense has been spared to create this beauty, selected as one of Matthew Jukes Top 100 Australian Wines. £23 buy
If Chardonnay really isn’t your thing then try one of these two adaptable, richly flavoured white wines that will stand up to the Christmas tastebud onslaught:
‘Secateurs’ Chenin Blanc, AA Badenhorst, Swartland, South Africa – quirky and flavoursome this cult wine is extremely adaptable and great with all kinds of food, this is how the Wine Advocate described it “so well balanced – uncomplicated but delicious”. A great wine to have on hand. £11.50 buy
La Romance Blanc, Côtes du Rhône, France – the main grape here is Viognier, which gives lots of fruit flavours. This is one for those who like their wine with some richness, made in small quantities with amazing dedication it is a real little gem. £13.50 buy
Le Pluriel, Clos des Boutes, Costieres de Nimes, France – this is a wine from a tiny organic estate adjacent to the Rhone, hand-made from robust Southern French grapes this wine manages to be both delicate and chewably delicious. There is ripe tannin to give a bit of bite and lovely warm fruit and spice all of which should work well the Christmas array of flavours. £11.50 buy
Pinot Noir, Delta Vineyards, Marlborough, New Zealand – we’ve gone to the New World for our Pinot Noir the first impression of this wine is that it is perfumed and delicate, but it has a good rich colour and once tasted surprising depths of flavours. Inspired by classic French Burgundy this is very modern wine with bags of flavour and charm. £17.50 buy
Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Domaine Galévan, Rhone, France 2009 - continuing our theme of hand-made wines from small vineyards here is a supreme example. Domaine Galévan is an historic estate for the first time now being run by a woman who has put her stamp on their wines. What can prove to be an over-powering and not always harmonious mixture is here given a lighter touch although still awash with flavour. A wine of great finesse perfect for a special meal. £25 buy
Amarone Jago, Recchia, Valpolicella, Italy 2010 – if you want something big and luxurious then Amarone is a top choice. The flavours here are damsons, demerara sugar and sweet spices all forming a rich bouquet Truly delicious. £24.50 buy
Cordon Cut Riesling, Mount Horrocks, Clare Valley, Australia, 2012 – a multi-award winning, hand-crafted wine, from organic grapes. To get the intense sweetness and rich flavours in this wine the canes of the vines are cut when the grapes are ripe and the grapes are left to shrink on the vine for up to seven weeks. This wine manages to be both tangy and sweet with flavours of orange marmalade, vanilla and more exotic fruits. It is made in tiny quanities and so is a rare treat. (375ml) £19.50 buy
‘Legacy of the Barossa’ 30 Year Old Pedro Ximenez, Dandelion Vineyards, Australia – this is powerful stuff, fortified to 19% it’s a great alternative to Port. Made from a grape usually associated with sherry but one that was planted in Australia a long time ago, as its name suggests this is a wine that comes with a history. A beautiful mellow brown colour and list of flavour and aromas as long as your arm, there is toffee, citrus peel, pecan nuts, maple syrup but with some acidity to keep it fresh. The flavour goes on and on …..(375ml) £16.50 buy
Chateau Laville, Sauternes, France 2009 - A golden wine with intense, fresh aromas of candied fruits, honey and spice. Unctuous yet delicate, this wine displays great richness and balance. The long finish is distinguished by a refreshing, vibrant citrus character. Decanter Regional Trophy winner. £18.25 buy
Order Your Award-Winning Kelly Bronze Turkey from J Seal Butchers
For over 12 years, we have been proud to supply one of the tastiest, most succulent turkeys around - the KellyBronze.
Winner of numerous taste awards, these free range birds are farmed using traditional methods and are free to roam and graze in pastures, stubble fields and woodland. Fed without the use of drugs, additives or growth promoters, the KellyBronze matures slowly, something you can taste in every mouthful. With a delicious flavour and a superb texture that makes for easy carving, a KellyBronze will be the centrepiece of your Christmas table.
To help you plan what size of turkey to order, have a look at the chart below:
Weight Will feed
4 kg 6-8 people
5-6 kg 8-10 people
7-8 kg 12-14 people
KellyBronze turkeys come supplied in a strong cardboard box containing full cooking instructions, recipes, a meat thermometer, place settings for the Christmas table and, of course, the giblets for making the gravy.
Alternatively, we sell fresh turkey stock alongside our other delicious accompaniments for your Christmas meal: homemade Yorkshire puddings, goose fat for roast potatoes, pigs in blankets with free range bacon, cranberry sauce and sausage meat. This year we’re delighted to also be offering Christmas puddings and cakes made to order. See us in the shop for details of our full range.
Why buy a KellyBronze?
The Kelly family has been breeding turkeys since 1972 and knows a thing or two about what makes them special:
“With ‘good old-fashioned’ flavour and texture, the KellyBronze free range turkey is bred to provide the ultimate experience in Christmas dining. You’ll find our turkeys have a superior flavour and texture and, with more servings per bird, they’re great value for money. We are the only turkey farmers in UK with complete control from start to finish - from our own pure breeding stock, to your Christmas table.”
Celebrity fans include Nigella Lawson – “the KellyBronze is the best bird you can buy” and Jamie Oliver – “Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a KellyBronze turkey.”
Why do we eat turkey at Christmas?
Although we can trace the eating of turkey back to Tudor times (Henry VIII was partial to them as part of his huge feasts) it wasn’t until the 19th century, when Queen Victoria popularised it as a Christmas meat, that it became a favourite on tables throughout Britain. Today, 10 million turkeys are sold each Christmas in the UK alone.
J Seal Butchers have just launched their new meat boxes which cater for everyone. This includes FREE same day delivery straight to your door!
Our new Meat Boxes contain a wide range of quality meats, poultry and game which have been selected directly by us from free range farms, as well as; pies and sausages made by us on the premises and a wide range of produce for your larder including: condiments, eggs, tinned food and sauces etc.
We've created a meat box just for you!
- Breakfast Club
- Hangover Cure
- Just For Me
- Student Box
- BBQ Feast
To see the selection of meat boxes please go to our shop page here.
Beef stew and crispy potato pie
PREP 15 mins
COOK 4 hrs
- 2 celery sticks, sliced into 1cm slices
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, halved lengthways then chunkily sliced
- 5 bay leaves
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 beef stock cubes, crumbled
- 850g braising beef cut into nice large chunks
- 850g big potatoes, unpeeled
- 25g/1oz mature cheddar, finely grated
- 25g/1oz Parmesan, finely grated
Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Put the celery, onion, carrots, bay and 1 thyme sprig in a casserole with 1 tbsp oil and the butter. Soften for 10 mins, then stir in the flour until it doesn’t look dusty anymore, followed by the tomato puree, Worcestershire sauce and beef stock cubes.
Gradually stir in 600ml hot water, then tip in the beef and bring to a gentle simmer. Cover and put in the oven for 3hrs, then uncover and cook for 30mins – 1hr more until the meat is really tender and sauce thickened.
Meanwhile put the potatoes in a big saucepan of boiling water and cook until the potatoes are not done, but about 3/4 s of the way there. Start testing the smallest ones first and fish out as they nearly get there.
4 When the meat is ready transfer to a baking dish. Slice spuds into 1cm thick rounds and gently toss with some seasoning, remaining 1 tbsp oil and remaining thyme leaves. Layer on top of the potatoes, scattering with the cheese as you layer. You can cover and chill the pie now for up to a day, or freeze for up to 3 months.
5 Increase oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and bake for 30-40 mins until golden and crispy, and the meat bubbling if the dish went in cold.
Mexican chicken soup
- SERVES 4
- Takes 35 mins
1 litre chicken stock
350g (about 2) chicken breasts
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 green chilli, deseeded and cut in half
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
1 x 400g tin sweetcorn
1 x 400g tin black beans
packet of tortilla chips
small bunch coriander, chopped
small bunch spring onion, chopped (can substitute with chopped avocado)
1 x lime
Pour the stock into a pan, and add the chicken breasts and chilli. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, partly cover and simmer for 20 mins until done. Remove the chicken and shred, reserving the stock and chilli.
Heat the oil in a pan, add the onion, garlic and cumin and cook on a gentle heat for 5 mins until soft. Add the chopped tomatoes, reserved stock and chilli. Blitz in a food processor or with a hand blender until smooth, then return to the pan.
Add the shredded chicken, sweet corn and black beans. Cook gently for 5 mins whilst stirring, then season generously with salt and pepper. Divide the tortilla chips, coriander and spring onion between the bowls, then pour over the soup. Finish with a good squeeze of lime juice and serve.
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