Monday, December 3, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Ebony McKenna

It is my absolute pleasure to welcome my first guest in Day Two of this year's

12 Days of Christmas 
Food and Romance 
Blogging Extravaganza 

Welcome, Ebony McKenna! Ebony is not only an amazing author of fun and fantastical YA novels, she's an awesome critique partner and friend. Ebony is joining TDoCFaRBE with a tale of a family favourite recipe, perfect for those Christmas leftovers...

Ebony McKenna
Turkey Curry For The Win!
by Ebony McKenna

I’m so excited to be part of the fabulous Emmie Dark’s 12 Days of Christmas, where we get to share some of our Christmas traditions with the world.

If you know me from Twitter, Facebook or even real life, you’ll know I love curry pies. But my all time favourite curry is the turkey curry my mother-in-law makes for Christmas.

It’s a properly English curry as well, so it has sultanas in it. On paper it sounds a little bit horrid, doesn’t it? Admit it, even the headline made you squirm. But this really is one of those ‘you can’t know until you’ve tried it’ dishes that is honestly divine.

This is the dish we all look forward to every festive season. The original roast turkey (which is all kinds of awesome) is served for Christmas lunch, but it’s two days later that the extra magic happens. All that delicious left over roast turkey is sliced up and sauced up with the previously mentioned sultanas and not-previously-mentioned celery chunks.

Just the way to use up your leftover turkey!
Over the decades, dozens and dozens of people have tried it and loved it. Another tradition my mother-in-law has is to invite loads and loads of people over for December 27, to help us get through the leftovers. The biggest was 35 guests. She had tables running the length of the dining room and down through the front lounge. Thank heavens for open-plan living. We could all see each other and wave down the length of the table. Then conversation died completely because we were too occupied with the curry.

Because we’re in Melbourne, we never really know what the weather is going to be like. When it’s a superhot summer, the air conditioner is belting, the paper hats are sticking to our clammy scalps and we all end up in the pool later on. If it rains (and we had massive hail storms last year on Christmas Day) it’s even better to eat curry while listening to the rain lashing the roof.

One day, I’ll have to take over the reins and it will be my turn to make the turkey curry. I am going to have to ask her for the recipe because there’s no way I can wing this. I’m going to have to do the work and get it right. The pressure will be on, for sure.

But not yet. This year I still get to enjoy it without any of the stress.

Oh, and another tradition? The husband and I are so thoughtful about helping the family clear the leftovers, we take empty food containers so we can bring some home.

May your Christmas, Hannuka, Festivus and New Year be full of feasting and fabulous traditions.

Don't forget, as part of TDoCFaRBE I'm encouraging you all to undertake a Random Act of Kindness throughout the festive season. During December, Random Acts is very helpfully making suggestions for all kinds of acts of kindness you can perform. Or you can simply send them a donation and wear a smile all day.


  1. I have no idea why but the thought of turkey curry just then made my mouth water!

    Think it was the sultanas that did it...

    1. I'm not a big fan of the curry-with-fruit-in-it thing (too many bad meals of "curried sausages" made by my Dad), but I have to admit, right now, when I'm peckish for some lunch, I think I'd hoover up a decent serving of it!

  2. That's the spirit Cathryn :-D

    I do love sultanas in curry. Little pockets of sweet in amongst the heat.

    There's a pie shop near me (of course) that does beef and curry pies with sultanas and caramelised onion. Delicious!

  3. Sounds Scrummy Ebony,
    The only time I've heard of turkey curry being used as a left over before today was while watching Bridget Jones. My family always have Christmas ham and eggs for breaky on boxing day and turkey sandwiches for a late lunch/dinner. I wonder if cooking up some curry on boxing day would increase the chances of meeting Mr Darcy? Worth a try, I'd have something tasty either way. :)

    1. Ooh, I *love* that theory, Dora! Making turkey curry increases your chances of meeting Mr Darcy. I forsee a rush on turkey curry ingredients at the supermarket... ;)

  4. Hi Ebony and Emmie,
    Turkey isn't a meat I'm fond of so I think the curry treatment would be perfect to turn what can be a bit dry into something tasty. And I can never pass up a curry. Mum used to make sweet curries when I was young and I haven't had one in years so it's making me a bit nostalgic.

  5. Absolutely, turkey can be a dry old bird if not adequately soaked in lard ... Mmmm, lard.

  6. Great post Ebony :)

    Dora meet me to it - I was also thinking about Bridget Jones' Diary. Not sure about turky curry but if it comes with a serve Colin Firth then I'm game ;)

    1. Sorry about the typos!!! To think I did read it before I hit 'Publish' *doh*!

  7. Haha, it's the food talk making you distracted.

  8. I'm not a great fan of turkey either, but in a curry and with sultanas—yeah, I think I'd like it. I know sultanas aren't traditional in curries (and my Indian girlfriend from Zambia who introduced me to making curries and the diversity of chillis would absolutely cringe) but I don't mind a bit of a change from the norm once in a while :)

    Now a curry pie recipe would be good :)

    Great blog, Ebs. Thanks for having Ebs as your special guest, Emmie.

  9. Hi Serena, you're right, sultanas usually have no place in a curry, but those English are great adaptors. It adds an element of sweet.

    By the way, I had a Thai duck curry the other week and it had lychees in it! (And delicious slices of duck as well). You'd think they wouldn't work, but it was amazing.

    1. OMG, I LOVE Thai duck curry. A proper red curry. And I'm not a fan of lychees (up there with mango in yuck factor) but, yes, I can see how it would work!