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Eyeing up a Christmas treat

Post on 15th December 2017

A traditional Christmas Day meal is a sight to behold, a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach and tucking into it is something to celebrate.

It’s a season of over-indulgence of course, but it may make you feel a little less guilty by considering the benefits for our eyes.

The festive sprout, for example, is rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, two powerful antioxidants that may help against retinal damage and cataracts. And fruity favourite, cranberry sauce contains plenty of vitamin C that could also help reduce the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts.

Christmas turkey would also not be the same without some chestnut stuffing that is packed with antioxidants including vitamin E, which also slows macular degeneration. This is even true of chestnut puree as well as whole chestnuts.

Not to mention Christmas pud and mince pies, which are bursting with vitamin C rich citrus and berries.

So you can now tuck into your Christmas festive fayre and know that although you may not be doing your waistline any favours, your eyes will be fit for the feast!

Happy Christmas and happy feasting!

Chestnut Stuffing Recipe (serves 10-16)

1 x large onion

100g streaky bacon

Large bunch of parsley

75g of butter (plus extra for greasing and buttering top)

250g vacuum-packed whole chestnuts

250g breadcrumbs

1 x 435g can unsweetened chestnut puree

2 eggs, beaten

Grating of fresh nutmeg

Salt and pepper


1. Peel and finely chop the onion and mix with finely chopped bacon and parsley (or save time and put in the food processor)
2. Melt 75g of butter in heavy based, large pan and, over a low heat, cook the finely chopped mixture until it softens (approx. 10 mins)
3. Remove to a bowl and, using your hands, crumble in the chestnuts so they are slightly broken up, then mix in the breadcrumbs and chestnut puree.
4. Beat in the eggs, season with a little salt and a good grating of nutmeg and pepper.
5. Butter a dish or foil container, add the stuffing, spread the 15g butter on top and bake, uncovered, in a preheated oven for 30-40 minutes at 200C/400F/Gas 6.