Celebrity chef Tony Tobin's 2009 Surrey Life recipes

PUBLISHED: 15:52 14 September 2010 | UPDATED: 16:24 20 February 2013

Celebrity chef Tony Tobin's 2009 Surrey Life recipes

Celebrity chef Tony Tobin's 2009 Surrey Life recipes

In a year where he somehow managed to find time to run the London Marathon, Surrey Life's resident celebrity chef Tony Tobin has still found plenty of time to tantalise our tastebuds in the kitchen

In a year where he somehow managed to find time to run the London Marathon, Surrey Life's resident celebrity chef Tony Tobin has still found plenty of time to tantalise our tastebuds in the kitchen

Tonys Traditional Roast Turkey

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine December 2009

Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 5 hours Serves: 8 (with enough for leftovers)

  • When you get your turkey, remove the giblets. They should be in the body cavity. Then place the uncovered turkey on a plate in the lowest part of the refrigerator. Make sure you know how much it weighs so that you can calculate the cooking time correctly. My timings are for a 14lb (6.5 kg) bird. If you can, try to get a fresh, free-range bird. However, if you can only buy a frozen one, or if its more convenient to do so, try to buy one that has been frozen without added water and dont forget to allow plenty of time for it to defrost slowly and completely. Preferably in your fridge.

  • Stuff the turkey with your chosen stuffing preferably my Chestnut and Orange one (see left!). The quantity of stuffing will be the same whatever the size of your turkey. Place stuffing in the neck end between the flesh and the skin, then tuck the neck flap under the birds back and secure it with a small skewer. Spread 6oz (175g) of softened butter all over the bird.

  • Lay about 8oz (225g) of streaky bacon rashers over the breast of the bird, overlapping slightly, then season with freshly milled black pepper and a little salt.

  • Arrange two large sheets of foil across your roasting tin, one widthways and the other lengthways. Lay the turkey on its back in the middle of the foil then loosely wrap it: the parcel must be firmly sealed but with room for air to circulate around the turkey, creating an oven within the oven. Place in a pre-heated hot oven, gas mark 7, 425F (220C), for 40 minutes this initial blast is so that the heat gets right into the turkey and the stuffing very quickly. Then reduce the oven temperature to gas mark 3, 325F (170C) for 3 hours.

  • After this time, remove the turkey from the oven, uncover it and discard any excess foil. Baste with the juices then increase the oven temperature to gas mark 6, 400F (200C). Cook the uncovered turkey for a further 40 minutes once the bacon on top of the turkey has browned you can push it down into the tin to allow the breast to get a final browning.

  • After the final 40 minutes, remove the turkey from the oven. Pierce the thickest part of the leg with a skewer then press the skewer against the leg to see if the juices run clear without any trace of pink if the juices are clear, the turkey is cooked. You can also give the legs a little tweak if they feel like theyve got some give in them, then the turkey is done. Cover it loosely with foil and allow it to rest for about 45 minutes before serving it will be fine at kitchen temperature.

Tonys Chestnut and Orange Stuffing

Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 20 minutes Serves: 8


  • 170g pack sage and onion stuffing

  • 60g cooked and peeled chestnuts

  • 100g fresh breadcrumbs

  • 1tsp fresh thyme leaves

  • Finely grated zest of two oranges

  • 1 chicken stock cube

  • 50g butter, plus extra for baking

  • 250g pork sausage meat

  • Little plain flour for dusting

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • Tip the sage and onion stuffing into a large bowl, roughly chop the chestnuts and add to the bowl along with the breadcrumbs, thyme and orange zest.

  • Boil one pint of water and dissolve the chicken stock cube in it. Add the butter, stir until melted and pour over the breadcrumb mixture. Stir well.

  • When completely cool, add the sausage meat and stir well. Season well with black pepper. You shouldnt need to add any extra salt as most sage and onion stuffing mixes contain quite a lot of salt already check the packet.

  • If you like, use half of the stuffing to loosely stuff the cavity of the turkey crown. If you do this increase the cooking time of the bird by 20 minutes.

  • With floured hands, roll the rest of the stuffing into balls (a bit smaller than a golf ball). Arrange on a roasting tray and dot each one with a small knob of butter. Cook at 200C for 20 minutes.

Flambed Peppered Steak

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine November 2009


  • 3 tbsp black peppercorns, coarsely ground

  • 4 x 175g fillet steaks

  • 4 tsp Dijon mustard

  • Sea salt

  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  • 50g unsalted butter

  • 50 ml Irish whiskey

  • 4 tsp beef stock

  • 3 tbsp double cream

To serve:
Buttery baked potatoes
Autumn salad leaves


1. Grind the peppercorns and place them in a fine sieve. Shake briefly to remove excess pepper powder and spread the ground peppercorns in an even layer over a small plate.

2. Spread a little Dijon mustard over both sides of the steaks and coat with the peppercorns, pressing firmly to ensure that they adhere to the meat. Season with a sprinkling of salt and set aside.

3. Heat the olive oil and butter in a frying pan over a moderate heat and add the steaks. Cook for two
minutes on each side for rare steaks, three minutes each side for medium steaks or about six minutes on each side for well done, taking care not to move the steaks around once they are in the pan, or the peppercorns will fall off.

4. Pour in the whiskey and set alight. Once the flames have subsided, remove the steaks from the pan and keep warm.

5. In a small saucepan, combine the beef-stock and cream and boil over a high heat for a couple of minutes. Pour any juices from the frying pan and the resting steaks into the mixture and stir well.

6. Place a steak on each plate and spoon over the sauce. Serve with baked potatoes laced with butter and a mixed autumn salad.

Seared sea bream
with crushed olive potatoes and red pepper essence (serves 4)

Originally publishedin Surrey Life magazine October 2009


  • 4 sea bream fillets

  • 16 new potatoes

  • 12 black olives, chopped

  • 50g butter

  • Olive oil

  • 2 red peppers

  • 1 large tomato

  • Handful fresh basil, chopped

  • Balsamic vinegar

  • Fresh rocket leaves

  • 1 small red onion, chopped

The key to making this dish look stunning and taste great is to bring together the different elements so they arrive in front of your guests warm and wonderful. This requires good timing. The fish and potatoes are very quick so you can prepare the colourful parts beforehand, leaving 20 minutes to boil the potatoes and 10 minutes to prepare the fish before assembling.

For the potatoes:
Boil the new potatoes until cooked through. Then, crush them with a fork and add the butter and olives, seasoning with salt, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.

For the fish:
Cook the sea bream fillets in a
non-stick pan, with a little oil and butter, skin side down first. As the flesh that is face up starts to change colour, flip, cook for a minute or two more, and then season. Present two fillets per person in a cross on top of the potato and olive crush.

The orange on top of the dish is provided by deep-fried tomato skin. Remove the skin from the tomato with a sharp knife or by blanching in boiling water. Then gently fry in oil until crisp. The red sauce is red pepper essence, which you can make by putting two peppers into an electric juicer and boiling this extract to a syrup in a small saucepan. The green is basil oil just olive oil and fresh basil leaves liquidised together with a little salt. The dark one is a balsamic syrup, which you can buy often as a glaze or make by pouring a cheap bottle of balsamic vinegar into a saucepan and bringing to a simmer until the liquid turns to a syrup.

Finally, serve the whole dish with fresh rocket and red onion.

Roast Guinea fowl
with smoked bacon and juniper stuffing (Serves 2)

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine September 2009


  • 1 whole guinea fowl

  • Half a small onion

  • 2 rashers smoked bacon

  • 1 juniper berry

  • Zest of 1 orange

  • 3 slices of bread turned into crumbs

  • 1 tablespoon of butter

  • 1 pinch fresh thyme

  • 1 small head of celery

  • A little ready-made chicken gravy


  • Remove breast and legs from the hen and remove thigh bone from the legs.

  • Finely chop the onion and sweat in the butter until soft. Chop the bacon finely and add to the pan along with the juniper and orange zest. Cook for two to three minutes.

  • Finally, add the breadcrumbs, season and mix well.

  • Stuff the legs with this stuffing and tie firmly with butcher's string.

  • Heat a heavy pan with a little oil, fry the legs until golden brown and transfer the pan to the oven.

  • After five minutes, add the breast and place back into the oven.

  • Roughly chop the celery and using a liquidiser blitz to a puree.

  • Strain the juice into a pan and reduce by two thirds.

  • Add a little gravy to the pan to make a jus.

  • Remove guinea fowl from oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes covered with tinfoil.

  • Serve with good mashed potatoes and the lovely celery jus spooned over the meat.

Tony Tobin's favourite marinade

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine August 2009


  • 3 tbsp apricot jam or lime marmalade

  • 1 tsp turmeric (ground)

  • 1 tsp cumin

  • 1 tsp coriander

  • 1 clove garlic

  • Zest from 1 lemon

  • Juice from 2 lemons

  • 2 tsp olive oil

  • Salt & pepper

I use this to marinate everything from chicken and lamb to fish, and it works well with veggie options, too.

  • Whisk together all the other ingredients and season with salt and pepper.

  • Marinate the meat, fish or nut cutlets for at least one hour - or preferably overnight if you are organised!

Watermelon and Feta Salad

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine July 2009

So, without further ado, first take the standard watery ingredients (cucumber, spinach etc) and top them up with watermelon, orange segments and slices of celery. Next, add a sprinkling of slightly salty morsels, such as feta, flaked tuna fish in brine or sundried tomatoes. Finally, there are the 'icing on the cake' ingredients. Here, I'm talking ripe avocado, toasted pine nuts, pumpkin seeds and - for your carbohydrate needs - cubes of caramelised roasted pumpkin or butternut squash.

Top the whole lot off with a dressing made of really good extra virgin olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar and you're reaching the very pinnacle of summer foods.

Personally, I like to prepare salads in large individual bowls - one for each person. This way, there's no faffing about with wooden salad paddles and no one can hog the best ingredients.

Roasted pork fillet
with liquorice and ginger (serves 2)

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine May 2009


  • 2 x 200g pork fillets

  • 1 small piece of liquorice stick ground to a powder

  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger

  • Olive oil

  • 1 clove garlic

  • 1 black liquorice stick

  • 100ml balsamic vinegar

  • 1 lemon


  • Place the liquorice powder and fresh ginger, clove of garlic and a little olive oil into a coffee grinder and blitz to a puree.

  • Season the pork fillet with salt and rub all over with the liquorice mixture and leave to marinate for one hour.

  • Heat in a pan with a little oil and fry on all sides. Place the meat in the oven for 15 minutes turning once. Remove from oven and allow to rest in a warm place.

  • Roughly chop the black liquorice and put into a pan with the balsamic vinegar, bring to the boil and gently simmer until vinegar thickens.

  • Strain through a fine sieve.

  • Slice pork into thin slices and drizzle with the liquorice vinegar.

  • Serve with your favourite potatoes.

Crockpot rump stew
(serves six to eight)

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine April 2009

This is the classic rump stew. Cut the carrots nice and big and make the cup of red wine a large one... then let the oven do the rest!


  • 1kg rump steak trimmed and cubed

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 teaspoons thyme

  • 2 medium onions quartered

  • 4 large carrots sliced into thick chunks

  • 1 cup red wine

  • 300ml good beef stock

  • A splash of Worcester sauce

  • Pepper


  • In a large frying pan, brown the beef all sides in a little oil adding the salt and some coarsely ground pepper.

  • Then place the beef in the crockpot and top with the thyme and onion.

  • Put carrots around the side.

  • In the pan you browned the beef, add the stock and red wine.

  • Cook until it bubbles deglazing the pan (scraping up the browned bits!) as you go.

  • Pour this on top of the beef. Place lid on the crockpot and cook at 180c for about 4 hours.

  • Serve with baked potatoes for a really hearty meal.

Seared Tuna
with warm crushed potato and wasabi salad

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine March 2009


  • 2 x150g fresh tuna steaks

  • 10 new potatoes

  • 100g fresh rocket salad

  • 1 beef tomato ( seeded and chopped)

  • 2 teaspoons of wasabi paste

  • 4 tablespoons of virgin olive oil

  • 1 lemon


  • Boil the new potatoes for 20 minutes and allow them to cool.

  • Wash the rocket and coarsely chop. Mix it with the chopped tomatoes.

  • Whisk the wasabi with the olive oil and squeeze the juice from the lemon into it.

  • Reheat the potatoes in boiling water, remove and crush with the back of a fork.

  • Add the potatoes to the tomatoes and rocket, and then season with a little of the wasabi dressing.

  • Cook the tuna very quickly on a hot griddle pan.

  • Spoon the salad into the centre of your plates and top with the tuna. Drizzle the remaining dressing around the sides.

  • Serve quickly.

Tony Tobin's Valentine Breakfast Muffins
(serves 2 only!)

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine February 2009


  • 2 floury breakfast muffins

  • 2 slices of smoked salmon

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 avocado

  • 1 sachet or jar of ready-made hollandaise sauce (250ml)


  • To poach the eggs, fill a frying pan with an inch of boiling water and keep it at a bare simmer.

  • Crack the eggs in the pan and cook for one minute.

  • Take off the heat and leave for 10 minutes.

  • Cut the smoked salmon into four 'muffin-sized' circles, using the edge of the muffin as a guide.

  • Cut the avocado in half, removing the stone, and peel it. Crush the flesh in a bowl using a fork, then add salt and pepper.

  • Pour the ready-made hollandaise sauce into a saucepan and place on a low heat, stirring regularly.

  • Split the muffins in half - to serve half a muffin per person. Lightly toast the muffins under the grill.

  • To serve, spread a layer of the avocado paste on to the toasted muffins, add the smoked salmon, then decorate it with small strips of the left-over smoked salmon.

  • Put the poached egg on top and, to finish, drizzle the warm hollandaise over the egg.

Tony's tips:

The ready-made hollandaise sauce (I used a jar from Marks & Spencer) makes this a simple dish to put together and won't tie you up in the kitchen for too long. Serve on a large wooden tray with a cafetire of coffee and fresh linen.

Rice and Mixed Vegetable Stir-fry

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine January 2009

This is the simplest of recipes and provides you with all of the slow-release carbs and vitamins you'll need to help you run faster! When I want to increase my protein intake a little (good for sustained exercise), I use this dish and add some diced salmon or tuna or some king prawns if I'm feeling extravagant. Try throwing raw baby spinach leaves in at the end for an extra fresh taste.


  • 125g Basmati rice to go into a pan of boiling salted water

  • 1 small egg

  • A little olive oil

  • 1 spring onion

  • clove garlic crushed

  • 200g vegetables of your choice. I do broccoli, ginger, green beans, fresh peas, cherry tomatoes, pumpkin (at this time of year) and carrots, which I prefer to cook in water first.

  • All the vegetables should be chopped up to about the size of the peas but they don't have to be uniform,

  • just roughly chop them.

  • 4 tablespoons dark soy sauce thinned with a little water, freshly chopped coriander and basil (the basil is a bit bizarre but I love it)


  • Cook the rice in the boiling water for 15 minutes. Strain and return to pan and allow to stand for a further 10 minutes.

  • Heat the olive oil in a wok, crack the egg into it and then stir-fry the egg until golden brown using a wooden spoon to break the egg into small pieces.

  • Add the spring onions and garlic and continue to cook for 1-2 minutes.

  • Throw in all the vegetables and cook for a further few minutes stirring well as you go

  • Finally, add the soy sauce and coriander/basil, mix well and serve.

Tony Tobin has been a regular on the BBC's Ready Steady Cook for over a decade andis head chef at the acclaimedThe Dining Room in Reigate.

If you've cooked any of the above recipes, share your thoughts and pictures below.

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