Things 2 try   before we die
  Best food & drink by category
Best food & drink by region Special occasions National menus
Alphabetical index

Sponsored links


Special occasions



The Sunday roast

Highslide JS

The Sunday roast is perhaps the most common feature of English cooking. The Sunday dinner traditionally includes roast potatoes accompanying a roasted joint of meat such as roast beef, lamb, or a roast chicken and assorted vegetables, themselves generally roasted or boiled and served with a gravy.

Left: Sunday roast, consisting of roast beef, mashed potatoes, veg and Yorkshire puddings.

Yorkshire pudding and gravy is now often served as an accompaniment to the main course, although it was originally served first as a "filler".

The practice of serving a roast dinner on a Sunday is related to the elaborate preparation required, and to the housewife's practice of performing the weekly wash on a Monday, when the cold remains of the roast made an easily-assembled meal. Sunday was once the only rest day after a six-day working week.

Highslide JS

An elaborate version of roast dinner is eaten at Christmas, with almost every detail rigidly specified by tradition. Since its widespread availability after World War II the most popular Christmas roast is turkey, superseding the goose of Dickens's time.

Left: Christmas turkey.

Before the period of cheap turkeys, roast chicken would be more common than goose, goose being unsuitable for small groups of diners.

Game meats such as venison which were traditionally the domain of higher classes are occasionally also eaten by those wishing to experiment with a wider choice of foods, due to their promotion by celebrity chefs, although it is not usually eaten frequently in the average household.


Back to What People Eat & Drink



World's best food

Sponsored links


World's best drinks