Thursday, June 7, 2007

Sunday Roast

In the U.K., the big Sunday meal isn't brunch, it's Sunday Roast. Most of the pubs serve it, and a couple of the cooking magazines offer recipes and ideas for your Sunday Roast at home. What's served? Well, roast. Roast beef, pork, lamb, or chicken. Add some roasted potatoes, a Yorkshire pudding, and some boiled vegetables, and you have yourself a Sunday Roast. According to the Wikipedia entry on it, Sunday Roast came about because it was a meal you could put in the oven before you headed off to church, and it'd be ready when you got home around lunchtime.

For various and assorted reasons, we hadn't yet had a proper Sunday Roast. So, this past Sunday, we decided to steal an idea mentioned by our neighbor -- ride our bikes out to a village for Sunday Roast. The village we picked was Grantchester, just three miles south of us. The ride took us along the river and through Grantchester Meadows (Pink Floyd fans know the song based on this place?). It was a pretty ride on a gorgeous day -- which means a lot of people had the same idea. No worries, though -- nothing wrong with a slow pace on a Sunday afternoon.

We should have ridden around Grantchester a bit more. Near as I can tell, it consists of three pubs and a post office. We chose a pub called Rupert Brooke, which we had heard good things about. There was plenty of outdoor seating, which was great since I'm allergic to the indoors on 70-degree, sunny days. We got one beef and one pork roast dinner. Here's what we got:

Oh, I forgot to mention that it's smothered in gravy. The burnt looking thing in the upper left is Yorkshire pudding, a savory pastry sort of thing meant for soaking up roast drippings and gravy. I'm not yet sold on it, but that one was particularly overcooked so I shouldn't judge based on that one.

This was also served with boiled broccoli, carrots, and leeks. Add a pint of beer, some coffee, and three Sunday newspapers, and you too will fall in love with Sunday roast. No chasing people out to turn over the tables here -- you can stay as long as you like. Like to try this at home? Here's some Sunday roast ideas here, here, here, here, here, and here.

What topped off the afternoon was that we meandered back home clockwise, as opposed to the more direct anti-clockwise, as they say here. This took us up around Jesus Green, where we happened upon a little jazz in the park.

We had our picnic blanket packed on the bike, so we rode over, spread the blanket out, and spent another hour or so soaking in the beautiful weather and joyous mood that can only come from being surrounded by happy, relaxed, content people.

Now this is a recipe for a Sunday afternoon.

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