Roast Beef Dinner (Sunday Roast)
Roast Beef Dinner (Sunday Roast) is a long time British tradition and the meal that every Brit looks forward to all week. Perfectly roasted beef served with crispy roast potatoes (roasties), carrots and Yorkshire pudding.
It’s actually Sunday lunch rather than Sunday dinner
Sunday is the day we eat our big Sunday dinner typically the middle of the day , lunchtime (dinner being lunch where I come from in the North of England, not confusing at all). But for the sake of the title, I called it roast beef dinner.
Sunday is also family day and that is when we would all gather around the table for a roast.
The side dishes for a Sunday Roast: Yorkshire Pudding and roasted potatoes (roasties pictured below) are a must (< click links for recipes). The vegetable is entirely up to you. I like roasted carrots but broccoli, peas or any of your favorite vegetable can be served. Don’t forget the gravy! It’s made in the pan that the beef is roasted in.
In the days of King Henry VII in 1485 it was considered a celebration. It is eaten on Sundays after church to end the religious fast.
Growing up, my mum would make a roast that would vary week to week from roast lamb, or beef or pork. Sundays were my favorite. Mum would put on a Nat King Cole record (yes a vinyl record) and we would get busy in the kitchen.
I remember at a young age, my job was either stirring the gravy, or going to the garden for the fresh mint for the mint sauce when we had roast lamb.
Yorkshire Pudding, or ‘Yorkies’, are an important part of the Sunday dinner. They are basically made with a simple flour batter (similar to the American popover). The drippings from the beef would be added to a muffin pan and heated in a very high oven until smoking.
The batter is poured into the hot fat and they essentially ‘fry’ in the oven and rise up to light and crispy ‘puddings’. They have a crevice in the middle which is perfect for pouring in a little bit of delicious beef gravy.
If you like horseradish sauce with your roast beef, I have a delicious homemade recipe for Horseradish Sauce (see picture below).
Key tips for roasting the beef
There are a few key tips when roasting beef. Letting the beef sit at room temperature before roasting ensures a more tender meat. I like to sear the beef on all sides before putting it in the oven to get a nice browning on the outside.
This recipe serves 6 people.
Beef temperature roasting temperatures:
Rare 120-125°F (48-50°C), bright red center
Medium rare 130-135°F (55-58°C) very pink center
Medium, 140-145°F (60-63°C) pink center
Medium well, 150-155°F (66-68°C) light pink center
Well done, 160°F + (71°C +), brown throughout
A meat thermometer is the one of the best kitchen tools when roasting any meat.