Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Sunday roasts

We love a Sunday roast. Not always on a Sunday. It's pretty much the easiest thing in the world to prepare and it can be adapted to almost any number of people. People talk a lot of rubbish about tricky timing to get everything ready at the same moment but unless your palate is sensitive enough to discern just a degree or two difference in temperature, it really is nothing to worry about. One or more elements will comfortably hang around until everything is ready.

The big things about making a roast good are choosing good quality meat and not being a slave to it. If your roast tastes of fatigue and resentment because you've been up since 7am preparing ten different vegetables, then no one is going to enjoy it. We tend to take a few shortcuts.

We'll make a slightly sauce-y braise of vegetables, and not make a gravy. Or we'll skip the roast potatoes in favour of a creamy gratin and keep everything else very plain and simple. Or we'll do several different roast vegetables and steam a single green veg. Each way is delicious, and it mixes things up a bit.
Roast lamb saddle, roast potatoes, spring vegetable braise
Beef roasted in the barbecue, potato gratin and snow peas and runner beans
Roast chicken, roast potatoes and pumpkin, mushroom gravy, asparagus and bread sauce
I had a weird hankering for bread sauce a while ago. It's one of the traditional accompaniments for roast poultry but it isn't something I have often had. My step-father is a huge fan of it though, so I got my mother's recipe.

Cat's Mother's bread sauce (makes lots - it's delicious)

Infuse about 400ml milk with onion / bay / cloves. i.e warm the milk in small saucepan, add halved onion etc and then leave to one side for a couple of hours.

Soon before serving the meal retrieve flavouring bits (strain if you want but I don’t), reheat milk and add a good handful of breadcrumbs (4 slices of a stale shop loaf with crusts trimmed. Give trimmed crusts to Jake & Watson.) Stir until bubbling and then I add grated nutmeg & ~ 15g butter to enrich. Serve.
Watson - one of the enthusiastic recipients of trimmed crusts


The Cat's Mother said...

Watson would like everyone to know that he actually prefers meat - but crusts from the bread sauce and vegetable trimmings add variety to his diet!

Barbara said...

I can't imagine how this passed me by! Never heard of bread sauce. Even went online to watch a video of Gordon Ramsey making it. Will definitely try this next time I roast a chicken.

Mary Bergfeld said...

Your photos are wonderful. I've just finished oatmeal and feel like I've been cheated :-). Have a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

Delectably Green said...

Can I come over for Sunday lunch!!! that beef roasted in the BBQ made me swoon!
Mary x
ps Watson is just the cutest!

The Cat's Mother said...

I do think the roast beef looks perfect. Thank you - he is cute and his "twin" brother is equally endearing.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Mother - their taste for vegetables continues, then?

Barbara - it's also quite traditional with game birds which are a bit dry and tired!

Mary - oatmeal is probably more appropriate first thing in the morning!

British Mary - they are lovely dogs! Very eager little faces. We were delighted by how the beef turned out.

grace said...

oh, i do hate it when my meals taste like fatigue. :)
you're right--this should never be limited to sunday supper!

Angie's Recipes said...

Beef roast and potato...a very satisfying and mouthwatering meal.

Kavey said...

We do roasts regularly too (and often not on a Sunday). And I agree, they're really one of the easiest meals to make, certainly not tricky on the timings front at all.

Would love you to post some more about your vegetable braise recipe, or guidelines. Not done that before, I think.

Megan said...

Bread sauce is something definitely new to me, never heard of it before. Sounds interesting.

I love lamb, but have never heard of lamb saddle. Does it go by another name? It looks delicious and I'm wondering if I'd be able to find it in the States.


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