Christmas dinner… a meal we look forward to and lust for all year long. Those crispy roasties, bucket sized Yorkshires and cheeky pigs in blankets make up the perfect plate. Unfortunately, when it comes to paying a little attention to our health, they are not the best medicine. Often soaked in butter or alternative oils, these sumptuous side dishes are an enemy to waistline. Now don’t be too quick to judge here, we are by no means suggesting you don’t indulge… No, no, no, all we’re saying is why not get a little creative? Think outside the box? This is where Nutiva steps in! The creamiest coconut oil, puckering up as the perfect partner to whipping up a delicious Christmas dish!
We created our ‘Christmas Duck Dinner’ dish using their Cold Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil to both roast our veggies and craft our cranberry sauce offering up an abundance of both health and cooking benefits.
When some oils are subjected to high temperatures they change structure and become aldehydes. The over consumption of these has been linked to poor health. Coconut oil, however, is a saturated fat (primarily made of medium chain fatty acids) which is far more stable under high temperatures due to its high smoke point. Saturated fat has in the past been given a bad rep, perhaps a little unfairly. More recent studies have found that it is actually the long chain fatty acids such as trans fats that we need to watch our consumption of. The medium chain fatty acids (such as those found in coconut oil) are metabolised differently and are in fact beneficial to human health. 
One of the main fats present in coconut oil is called ‘lauric acid’. There have been studies to suggest that when lauric acid is digested, it is converted into ‘monolaurin’ which has been linked to helping us fend off pathogens such as bacteria, viruses and fungi. The chance of a possible immunity boost never hurt anyone, especially over the Christmas period!


Ingredients: (Serves 2)
Roast Potatoes:
1 Large Sweet Potato (700g)
1tsp Nutiva Coconut Oil
1tsp Cinnamon
Pinch Smoked Sea Salt
Roast Veg:
4 Small Parsnips
2 Large Beetroots
1tsp Nutiva Coconut Oil
Pinch Smoked Sea Salt
200g Brussel Sprouts
1tsp Nutiva Coconut Oil
½-1 tsp Nutmeg
Pinch Smoked Sea Salt
2 Duck Breasts
Pinch of Smoked Sea Salt
Cracked Black Pepper
Cranberry Sauce:
150g Fresh Cranberries
2 Clementines (juice)
1-2tsp Cinnamon
½ – 1tsp Nutmeg
1 Star Anise
1-2tbsp Honey
1tsp Nutiva Coconut Oil


Preheat oven to 180°C
Peel the sweet potatoes and cut into 2 inch chunks. Place in a saucepan, cover with water and put on a high heat to par boil.
Slice the parsnips into long batons and the beetroot into slices.
On a large baking tray make 3 sections by folding your foil up to create mini walls.
Place the beets and parsnips in separate sections of the foil lined baking tray. This will prevent the parsnips from turning pink! Dollop on the coconut oil and sprinkle over the salt. Set the tray to one side.
Once the sweet potatoes have slightly softened, strain the water. Add the coconut oil, cinnamon and sea salt. Pop the lid back on and shake vigorously to ‘fluff up’ the edges of the potatoes.
Add the potato chunks to the final section of the tray along with the beets and parsnips, then place in the oven for 30-40min or until the potatoes are super crunchy and the other veg is cooked through.  
Next cut the brussels into quarters and place on a small foil lined baking tray. Add small dollops of coconut oil, then sprinkle over the nutmeg and sea salt and set the tray to one side.
Place a small saucepan on a medium heat. Add the cranberries, juice of the clementines, 100ml boiling water (you can add more as you go along if it is too thick), cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise, coconut oil and honey. Let this bubble away and reduce down.
Place the tray of brussels in the oven.
Trim down the duck breasts, score the fat and rub in a pinch of salt and pepper. Place a non stick pan on a high heat with no oil. Once hot, place the duck breasts skin side down. Cook for around 3-5mins or until the fat has rendered down and becomes crispy. Seal off all other sides for around 30 seconds. Strain off the excess fat, return the breasts to skin side down and place the whole pan in the oven for 5-10mins depending on how you like your duck cooked.
Allow duck to sit for a few minutes on a chopping board before slicing.
Remove the star anise from your cranberry sauce.
Plate up the roast potatoes, roast veg and brussels.
Top with the sliced duck breast and a dollop of cranberry sauce.