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The sunday roast

The sunday roast

When cooking the Sunday roast being organised is the key

The Sunday roast lunch was always one of my favourite meals of the week when I was a boy and it’s still a special meal for me.

When it comes to cooking a roast successfully, getting your timing right is key. As so often with cooking, a little organisation makes all the difference.

The oven

Pre-heat your oven properly; give it time to get to the required temperature.


Do all your peeling and chopping in advance. Working in a restaurant kitchen as I did means you realise how important ‘prepping’ is.


When I’m cooking a joint of meat, I like to start by browning it in a large pan on top of the stove before putting it in the oven. This kick-starts the cooking process, getting heat into the meat.

Rest your meat

Once your meat or bird is cooked to taste, remove it from the oven, cover it with foil to retain the heat and set it aside to rest. Resting the meat is very important as this makes the meat more juicy, tender and succulent.

While your meat is resting

You can increase the heat in the oven and use this time to cook the roast potatoes and Yorkshire puddings as these require a higher cooking temperature than the meat or poultry.

While these are cooking, make your gravy. You can take your bird or meat out of the tray you cooked it in and use the same tray with all the juices to make the gravy in. If you’re cooking beef try my recipe for Rich Beef Gravy; for other meats have a look at my making a great gravy tip.

This final stage is also the time to cook last-minute vegetables, like peas, green beans or broccoli. Keep your eye on them, as they’re easy to overcook.

Quick notes:

  • Don’t forget to warm the plates!
  • Bring the rested meat or poultry to the table and carve it there. It’s always nice to have a touch of theatre for your roast.

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