AGA Christmas Cooking

Recipes created by Tatty Happell.

With Christmas cooking it is important to bear in mind that most people like a reasonably traditional menu. It is not generally a good idea to jazz up every dish – introduce a few new ideas but keep the basics reassuringly familiar. Concentrate on cooking the vegetables well and work to a simple written out time plan so that nothing is forgotten. This way you will enjoy everything too.

With careful planning the work on Christmas Day can be kept to a minimum, so that you can enjoy opening presents and spending time with family and friends. Enlist help the day before for peeling vegetables and preparing the trimmings – children love to be involved with helping to lay the table, make festive place cards etc.

The following tips will help you enter the stress-free world of AGA entertaining.

AGA Glazed Ham

YouTube player


Strip the skin from the joint and cut the fat into diamonds.

Stand the joint fat side up on a baking tray lined with bake o glide.

Stick cloves in the diamonds for extra flavour and dramatic effect!

Spread on the glaze and finish off in the roasting oven. Usually takes about 15 minutes, keep an eye on it as with the high sugar content it can burn easily. Alternatively if the roasting oven is full, the baking oven can do the job, will take about 20-25 minutes.

Ginger Marmalade glaze Mix together 3 tablespoons of ginger marmalade with 2 teaspoons of mustard powder and spread over the fat.

AGA Christmas Wreath

YouTube player


  • 2 square sheets of puff pastry
  • 1 jar of green pesto
  • 1 jar of red pepper strips chopped up a bit
  • grated parmesan


Place first sheet of pastry on a lined baking sheet or cold plain shelf.

Cut as big a circle as you can, then using a cup or glass to cut a hole out of the centre of the circle.

Spread the pesto and the diced up peppers over the surface of the circle.

Pop the second sheet of pastry on top of the first and trim to fit.

Using a knife or pizza cutter slice around the wreath, making sure to leave the centre in tact.

Twist the slices 3-4 times in the same direction to create the leaves of the wreath. Sprinkle with parmesan and then bake in the roasting oven for approx. 15- 20 mins until the pastry is crisp and golden.

AGA Cranberry Shortbread

YouTube player


  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt 225g butter, softened
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest, or more to taste
  • 250g dried cranberries, chopped
  • 250g plain flour


Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl; set aside.

Beat the butter and icing sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth.

Stir in the vanilla and almond extracts and orange zest.

Mix in the flour mixture until just incorporated.

Fold in the cranberries; mixing just enough to evenly combine.

Divide the dough into 2 equal portions, then roll into logs about 18cm long.

Wrap each log in greaseproof paper or cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

Remove greaseproof paper and slice the logs into 1cm slices.

Arrange the biscuits on a baking tray about 2cm apart.

Bake in the preheated oven until firm but not browned, about 10 minutes.

AGA Spiced Nectarine Chutney

YouTube player


  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp nigella seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp chilli flakes (optional)
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 kg nectarines washed and stones removed and diced
  • Couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup soft brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp grated ginger
  • 2 cloves finely chopped garlic
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom


Heat oil

Add onion, fry until cooked, then add ginger, garlic and chili and other spices until fragrant.

Add the diced nectarines, salt and vinegar, mix well.

Bring to the boil and then simmer for approx. 40 minutes.

AGA Butterfly Prawns

YouTube player


  • 4 lobster tails
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Lemon Zest
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp thyme chopped
  • 1 tsp rosemary chopped
  • 1 tsp parsley chopped


Whisk together the butter and herb ingredients and garlic. Leave it on the back of AGA to infuse.

Prepare the prawns by cutting down the centre with kitchen scissors, loosen the meat in the tail, spread the butter herb mixture evenly over the tails and allow some to dribble into the shell,

Pop on the shallow baking tray and place on the top runners of then roasting oven for approx. 8- 10 minutes, or until the tails are opaque and lightly browned.


AGA Quails’ Eggs

YouTube player

Cranberry and Macadamia Stuffing


  • Olive Oil
  • 250g Streaky Bacon
  • 1 Brown Onion
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Thyme
  • 1 Tbsp Oregano
  • 2 1/2 cups fresh white breadcrumbs
  • Large handful of flat leaf parsley
  • 3/4 cup of unsalted macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup cranberries salt and pepper


Heat oil and cook onion and bacon until cooked.

Add garlic and lemon thyme and cook for a couple more minutes.

Remove from heat and add all other ingredients.

Stir to combine.

Leave to cool before stuffing in the turkey neck hollow.


Fruit Mince & Grated Apple Tart


  • a roll of Careme short crust pastry or their amazing chocolate short crust pastry
  • 1 jar of fruit mince
  • 3/4 granny smith apples, grated on a course grater and excess juice squeezed out 1 medium tub of sour cream.


Line a round or rectangular flan tin with loose base with the pastry of your choice.

Spread the fruit mince onto the base of the tin.

Then spread the apples over the top, should be almost at the top of your tin!

Finally and yes it seems weird but it will work, you spread the sour cream over the top of the apples to give a smooth top to the tart!

Bake on the floor of the roasting oven taking advantage of the no blind bake miracle of an AGA! takes about 30 minutes.

AGA Christmas Turkey

YouTube player

Ingredients (Serves 12)

  • 5.4kg turkey
  • 1 onion, trimmed and skin removed
  • 1 organic unwaxed lemon, wiped clean
  • 175g butter, softened
  • 8 rashers streaky bacon
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 600ml turkey stock
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • sherry
  • For the Hazelnut stuffing:
  • 450g good-quality butcher’s sausages
  • 450g unsweetened hazelnut purée
  • 115g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For the bacon and sausage trimming:
  • 24 cocktail sausages
  • 4 tbsp oil
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup
  • 12 rashers streaky bacon

This traditional roast turkey is excellent for Christmas Day. This turkey will be cooked to perfection and in half the time in an AGA.


You will need to take the turkey out of the refrigerator 2 hours before you are ready to cook it. Start by making the hazelnut stuffing: skin the sausages and mix the sausagemeat with the hazelnut purée, breadcrumbs, egg and nutmeg. Season well, but go easy on the salt. Stuff the mixture into the neck end of the turkey only, making sure that the breast is well plumped, then draw the neck skin down to cover the stuffing and secure in place with a skewer. Place the onion and lemon, both halved, in the cavity.

Smear the breast and legs with the softened butter, then place the lardons or bacon over the breast. Season the bird, then weigh to establish the correct cooking time: for fast roasting in the AGA roasting oven, a 3.6-5.4 kg bird will take 1 3/4 – 2 hours; a 5.4 – 7.25 kg bird will take 2 – 2 1/2 hours.

If you are using a conventional cooker, roast the turkey at 180C/350F/ Gas Mark 4 for around 3 1/2 hours. Cooking times are approximate. Place the turkey in a large AGA roasting tin, on a grill rack if you have one. Hang from the lowest set of runners in the roasting oven – or cook on the lowest shelf of a conventional oven. When nicely browned, after about an hour, baste, then cover loosely with foil and continue to roast in this position.

While the turkey is roasting, prepare the garnishes: toss the sausages in the oil and maple syrup. De-rind the 12 rashers of bacon, stretch them slightly with the back of a knife. Cut each into 2 and roll the pieces up. Put the bacon rolls and sausages in half-size roasting tins lined with pieces of Bake-O-Glide to make washing-up easy. Use a grill rack for the bacon. Put all this aside, uncooked, until the bird is ready.

Test that the turkey is cooked by piercing the thigh with a skewer. If the juices run clear, it is ready. Remove the turkey to a second, clean, AGA roasting tin to rest. Put the sausage and bacon garnishes into cook at a high level in the roasting oven for 20 – 25 minutes.

Next, make the gravy in the roasting tin: drain off any surplus fat from the cooking juices and, off the heat, add the flour to the juices to make a roux. Cook on the simmering plate or on the floor of the roasting oven for a couple of minutes. Heat the turkey stock and gradually whisk it in until the gravy is to your desired consistency. Allow it to simmer for 5 minutes.

Season to taste and add a good slug of sherry. Serve the turkey on a warmed platter surrounded by the bacon rolls and sausages.



Turkey: Allow 450g per person, weighed when plucked and drawn.
Allow 225g per person, for boned and breast-only roasts.

Goose: Allow 900g per person, weighed when plucked and drawn.
Allow 450g per person, for boned and breast-only roasts.

This allows for second helpings and a manageable quantity of leftovers that can be safely used up within two to three days.

Defrosting & Storing Frozen Birds

It is essential that you allow a frozen bird to defrost for the correct length of time:

Metric Thawing

  • 2.25kg 20 hours
  • 4.5kg 24 hours
  • 6.75kg 28 hours
  • 9kg 48 hours
  • 11.25kg 48+ hours

Thaw the turkey in the coolest room – below 16°C. Remove packaging first, check regularly, once defrosted (no ice crystals remaining in the cavity and the legs are quite flexible), store covered, low down in the refrigerator at a temperature of no more than 5°C.


Remove the bag of giblets from inside a fresh bird as soon as you take delivery of it, or in the case of a frozen bird, as soon as they become loose during defrosting. Use them to make your own giblet stock ready for making incomparable gravy, it really is worth it and it’s so easy in the AGA simmering oven.


A tip to make the carving more elegant is to remove the wishbone before cooking. This will vastly facilitate carving the breast giving you lovely even slices. Either ask your butcher to do this for you or do it yourself using a very sharp knife. Cut carefully to avoid piercing the skin. Loosen the skin at the neck end and ease your fingers up between the breast and the skin. Cut the wishbone at the base end near the wing joints first, cut up along the bone to remove from the flesh and loosen at the top, twisting to remove. You might like to consider asking your butcher to remove the leg tendons before roasting. Beware cross-contamination – after handling raw poultry wash all utensils, surfaces and your hands to prevent bacteria being transferred.


Rinse the inside of the bird with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Season the insides of both cavities with salt and pepper and a generous amount of butter. In the interests of food safety with a turkey, it is recommended to stuff the neck or breast end only. In the body cavity place, a quartered peeled onion and lemon together with a stick of celery, a few batons of carrot with some sprigs of fresh parsley and thyme which will pervade the bird with an aromatic flavour. Allow about 225g prepared to stuff for each 2.25 kg of the dressed bird. Either use a homemade stuffing, or doctor two packets of a good quality Sage and Onion stuffing mix: makeup with boiling water as directed, adding a good knob of butter and plenty of seasoning. When quite cold, mix well with 900g of sausage meat (taken from good quality sausages). Stuffing must be cold before being used and it is recommended to stuff the bird just before cooking. If liked, prepare the stuffing ahead of time, and then refrigerate or freeze it, but stuff the bird with stuffing at room temperature just before you are ready to roast it. Additional stuffing can be cooked in a separate dish, and given several bastings of turkey roasting juices as it cooks. It is not recommended to truss a bird, this allows free circulation of heat to all parts. Use bathroom scales covered with cling film to weigh the stuffed bird.


A Turkey Crown has the legs, wingtips and backbone removed from the bird, leaving the double breasts still attached to the ribs and sternum. This is increasingly a popular choice these days, making for easy carving whilst retaining a traditional appearance on the Christmas dining or buffet table. If dark meat is liked, consider asking your butcher to make you a crown, and cook the legs separately, perhaps boned and then stuffed.


It is vital that the bird is not roasted straight from the refrigerator. Roasting times allow for cooking a bird from room temperature, i.e. one that has been taken out of the refrigerator and left in a cool room for several hours before cooking.


When you are roasting a turkey or goose, remember that you are cooking two different types of meat – the delicate light breast meat, which must not be allowed to dry out – and the darker leg meat which takes longer to cook. Generously butter the breast and cover with rashers of streaky bacon or lardons. Aim to make a roomy tent over the bird to protect the breast from over-browning, also use foil to protect the legs if they start to brown too quickly. With an AGA, basing is only needed very occasionally during periods in the roasting and baking ovens. If necessary, remove the foil for the last 30 minutes to crisp the skin.


In the interest of food safety is it important that the internal temperature of raw poultry should rise from room temperature to 60°C (140°F) within four hours at the start of the cooking. With the slow method, this is particularly important, this is why I recommend an initial period in the hot roasting oven. All cooking times are approximate.


Rub liberally with butter. Place in the AGA roasting tin, on a grill rack if liked. Hang from the lowest set of runners in the roasting oven for one hour until nicely browned, then tent loosely with foil. The TOTAL fast method of roasting times are:

Metric Roasting Time

  • 3.6 – 5.4kg 1¾ – 2 hours
  • 5.4 – 7.25kg 2 – 2½ hours
  • 7.25 – 9kg 2½ – 3 hours
  • 9 – 10.8kg 3 – 3½ hours
  • 10.8 – 12.6kg 3½ – 4 hours


Rub liberally with butter. Place in the AGA roasting tin on a grill rack if liked. Hang from the lowest set of runners in the roasting oven for up to one hour until nicely browned, then tent loosely with foil. After the first hour in the roasting oven, transfer the turkey to the baking oven to finish cooking, for the following additional times:

Metric Roasting Time

  • 3.6 – 5.4kg 1½ – 2½ hours
  • 5.4 – 7.25kg 2½– 3½ hours
  • 7.25 – 9kg 3½ – 4½ hours
  • 9 – 10.8kg 4½ – 5½ hours
  • 10.8 – 12.6kg 5½ – 6½ hours


Rub liberally with butter. Place in the AGA roasting tin without a grill rack. Roast on the floor of the roasting oven for up to one hour and as soon as it starts to brown, tent loosely with foil. After the first hour in the roasting oven, transfer the turkey to the simmering oven to finish cooking, for the
Additional Times:

Metric Roasting Time

  • 3.6 – 5.4kg 3 – 5 hours
  • 5.4 – 7.25kg 5 – 7½ hours
  • 7.25 – 9kg 7½ – 10 hours
  • 9 – 10.8kg 10 – 12½ hours
  • 10.8 – 12.6kg 12½ – 15 hours


3-oven models: It is recommended to use the baking oven on slumber mode with the roasting oven at normal. In this way, the bird can be started off in a hot roasting oven and then transferred to the baking oven in slumber mode. This oven in slumber mode operates at a slightly higher heat than the simmering oven and gives the best result for slow roasting a large bird.

5-oven models: The method given for the three-oven model can be used, or the slow cooking oven can be used instead of the baking oven in slumber mode if preferred. Again, the slow cooking oven operates at a slightly higher heat than the simmering oven and gives the best result for slow roasting a large bird.


To cook the perfect Christmas turkey in an AGA 60 use the top oven in the baking oven setting, an 8kg bird will take around 4-4.5 hours to cook (similar timing to the Medium Method, see above). We recommend adding bacon over the breast meat and using a large roasting tin on floor grid or on the oven grid shelf on the floor of the oven. When the turkey comes out, leave to rest for up to an hour, turn the top oven to roasting oven setting and cook the roast potatoes, parsnips, grilled bacon rolls and chipolatas. The simmering oven can then be used for all other items.


The trick to making carving a pleasure at every roast meal is easy: use a really sharp carving knife. Once the turkey has rested, cut the skin between the leg and the breast. Bend the leg outwards and cut through the joints to remove the legs. Bend these to find the joint between the thigh and drumstick and separate. Hold the drumstick in a wad of kitchen paper and carve slices along the bone. For white meat, starting from the lower end, slice the breast meat at an angle, to give elegant thin slices. Carefully transfer each slice as it is carved to a plate to prevent the meat from breaking.