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The Origins Of The Great Sunday Roast

The Origins Of The Great Sunday Roast
A Sunday Roast is the most traditional British meal and one of the nation’s favourites. It makes sense that it originated in England, but are you curious about its history? In this article, we give a brief history lesson on the Great Sunday Roast and learn what makes it so great as well as the interesting story behind the famous Yorkshire pudding. Continue reading and let’s begin!

Where Did The Sunday Roast Come From?

According to sources, it’s believed the Sunday roast was introduced during King Henry VII’s rule in 1485. His guards were known as ‘beefeaters’. We are not sure of the exact reason why, but one theory suggests that they could eat as much roast beef as they wished when they had a meal with the king. A different theory suggests the Sunday roast came from the Middle Ages, when village serfs would gather after church on Sundays to practice for battle. If they performed well, they were rewarded with roast meat. Fast forward to the industrial revolution, people would roast a joint of meat into their oven with vegetables and potatoes before they went to church. When they came home, their meal would have been slowly cooked and ready to serve to their families. Meat juices were used to make gravy, which was poured over their meals. Working-class families did not have the luxury of their own oven. Instead, they would drop off their Sunday roast at a local bakery on the way to church and it was cooked in the bakery’s oven as the bakers did not make bread on Sundays.

The Story Behind The Yorkshire Pudding

Most Brits would agree that a Sunday roast is not complete without Yorkshire pudding (we can agree if we do say so ourselves!). During the 18th century, Yorkshire pudding was first called ‘dripping pudding’. Cooks in Britain discovered a way to make use of excess fat or ingredients when baking bread and cakes, by mixing flour, milk, eggs, and some salt to form a batter. This batter was made while the meat was roasting. The batter was then cooked in the oven or over a fire underneath the roasting meat to catch any meat juices and drippings (hence the name). You may be wondering, does the Yorkshire pudding come from Yorkshire? It is unknown if the Yorkshire pudding originated from the actual region of Yorkshire. One theory has suggested that Yorkshire pudding actually came from the geographic region of North England because it was associated with coal at the time and the higher temperatures made the batter crisper.  Surprisingly, the Yorkshire pudding was not originally served on the same plate as the roast meat. It was actually first served as an appetiser course with gravy before the main meal. This was because Yorkshire pudding is made from batter and it would fill people up quicker, so they wouldn’t eat as much meat afterwards. Leftover meat was then used to make meals for the following days and this helped both families and businesses save money as meat was expensive.

Enjoy A Great Sunday Roast At The Boars Head Hotel

This has led us to today, and the modern Sunday roast continues to satisfy taste buds not only across England but all over the world. Whilst a Sunday roast varies from place to place and person to person, it generally consists of roast beef, lamb, turkey or gammon, roasted potatoes, mashed potato and vegetables such as carrots, parsnips, broccoli or greens. Of course, not forgetting the famous Yorkshire pudding on the side before being covered with plenty of gravy. Is your mouth watering yet? Our’s certainly are! Why not appreciate the national origins of the Great Sunday Roast and treat yourself to a delicious carvery at The Boars Head Hotel in Derby? Our Sunday menu is open and served from 12pm to 9pm every Sunday. Our bar is allocated on a first-come, first served basis, so make sure you head down early to grab yourself a table. Alternatively, you can book a table by calling us on 01283 820344. We look forward to you spending your Sundays with us and tucking into a Great Sunday Roast!  
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This website is to be used as a a best faith effort to inform you of our allergen and intolerance policy,  and may not be 100% accurate, or may be out of date at the time of reading, you should always advise your server on any dietary requirements, including intolerance & allergies. All our dishes are prepared in our kitchens where allergens are present. We therefore cannot guarantee that all our dishes are free from traces of allergens.

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