Now that the weather is cooling off it’s the perfect opportunity to gather the whole family around that table and enjoy a delicious Sunday Roast.
I love a good roast lunch and it’s really not as much work to make as you think. With my Lazy Gal’s Guide to the Ultimate Sunday Roast Lunch, you’ll be hosting a stress free family lunch every weekend.
Today I’ve partnered up with ALDI, who are all about ‘living richer lives for less’. And what better way to live life richer than to enjoy an abundant Sunday Roast Lunch without breaking the budget.
It’s been too long since I had friends around for a long lazy lunch so this was the perfect opportunity to gather up my favourite people and enjoy each other’s company over some good food and a glass of wine (or two!)
Cinti’s Top 10 Tips for the Ultimate Sunday Roast Lunch
1. Get all of your shopping at ALDI
ALDI is a one stop shop for all your fresh food and grocery needs. From high quality meat, fresh veg, gravy, alcohol, starters and dessert at a much lower price and most importantly, without compromising on quality or freshness.
You’ll also save a ton of time shopping, which is perfect for a lazy gal like me. I’m always looking for shortcuts to make my life a little simpler.
2. Pick your meat, then amp up the flavour
Crispy roast pork crackling, tender lamb or juicy roast beef? Take your pick and then make it extra tasty with plenty of herbs and seasoning.
Adding some fresh herbs, lemon slices, garlic, olive oil or dry rubs will really enhance the flavour of the roasted meat. If you have time, season your roast a few hours, or even the night before to really let the flavours soak in. You’d be surprised at how great even the most budget of meat cuts can taste when you add a bit of extra zing.
Rare, Medium or Well Done? That’s a personal preference, but if you are not sure of cooking times, use the advice on the packaging as a guide.
Generally, for most roasts (beef and lamb) cook for 20min (rare) to 30 min (well done) for every 500g at 180C. Let the roast rest for 15min before carving. Roast pork needs a hot blast at about 220C for about 30-40min to get the crackling nice and crisp before turning the oven down.
Make sure you pre-heat the oven and take the meat out of the fridge about an hour before roasting as meat at room temperate will cook more evenly.
The Mr recently purchased a meat thermometer which is also a helpful tool to get your meat spot on.
I’m never disappointed by the quality and selection of ALDI meat. It’s all grown in Australia and they have a good choice of organic meat as well.
Initially I was after a nice piece of roast beef, but the leg of lamb looked so good that I opted for that instead. It was great value at around $20 for a 2kg leg. I find rosemary a little too overwhelming for me personally, so I roasted this leg of lamb with lemon thyme, lemon, whole bulbs of garlic (that get beautifully fragrant and sweet once roasted) and plenty of olive oil and salt & pepper.
3. Fluffy Roast Potatoes are a must
Nail the potatoes and you’ve got a winning roast! Potatoes that are crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside are everyone’s favourite and much easier to make than you think. I always struggled with hard under-cooked roast potatoes, until I tried this simple trick – parboil them.
How to make the Best Roast Potatoes
- Peel medium-sized potatoes and cut in half (or quarters for large potatoes).
- Boil them for about 10-15min in salted water till they are just tender – don’t over cook or they will fall apart.
- Drain and fluff up the edges by scraping them with a fork or giving them a really good shake in the colander.
- Toss them in plenty of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Bake in a hot oven till they are brown and crispy (about 40min), turning them halfway through cooking.
4. Be creative with your sides
The classic potato, pumpkin and peas combo is always great, but don’t be afraid to try something a bit different. Be inspired by the fresh seasonal produce at your local ALDI store and grab what looks good. The more colourful the better!
If you insist on Yorkshire puddings with a Sunday Roast, you’ll find them pre-made in ALDI’s freezer section. We made a batch using pre-made ‘pancake shake mix’ we found in store. They were a little bit sweet and more of a doughnut texture than a Yorkshire pudding, but it was an easy shortcut if you don’t want to make a batter from scratch.
Here are some tasty ideas for Sunday Roast side dishes:
Sautéed Silverbeet with Bacon and Garlic
- Finely chop up some streaky bacon and garlic and gently fry them in a little olive oil.
- Throw in a bunch of washed and chopped silverbeet and sauté until just wilted and coasted with all the bacon and garlic goodness.
- Season with a little salt and pepper and a drizzle of oil or lemon juice if desired.
Citrus Glazed Carrots
- Slice baby carrots length ways.
- Toss in a pan with a few blobs of butter, your favourite herb (I’ve used thyme from my garden) the juice of an orange (or 2 mandarins) and top with boiling water till the carrots are just covered.
- Simmer gently until the carrots are soft and the liquid has reduced down to a thick glaze.
Spiced Roast Vegetable Medley
- Cut up assorted seasonal vegetables including – Pumpkin, Sweet potato, Red onion, Capsicum, Eggplant into large chunks.
- Toss in oil and season with a tablespoon of your favourite spice mix – try Moroccan flavours like cumin, coriander and paprika.
- Bake until tender.
5. Get a little bit saucy!
Don’t forget the gravy and condiments. There is no shame in using gravy powder to whip up a big batch of gravy – add some pan juices to it if you want to jazz it up a bit.
Classic meat and condiment combos:
- Beef with mustard or horseradish cream
- Pork with applesauce
- Lamb with mint sauce
- Everything with gravy!
I’ve always found the mustard selection and quality at ALDI to be really good.
I’ve made my own mint sauce for our roast lamb with fresh mint and it was super easy.
Cinti’s Easy Mint Sauce Recipe
- Finely chop one small bunch of fresh mint leaves
- Combine in a small bowl with 4 tbsp vinegar, 4 tbsp boiling water, 1/2 tsp sugar and a pinch of salt.
- Keeps well in fridge for a few days. Freeze any leftovers in ice-cube trays and pop out and defrost when you need some mint sauce in a snap.
6. Don’t forget the nibbles and a nice glass of wine
Keep the hunger pains at bay while the roast is in the oven by chatting over a few nibbles and a nice glass of wine – we picked a delicious Cabernet Merlot from ALDI. The cheese and deli selection at ALDI will have you spoilt for choice, but don’t go overboard with the nibbles or your guests will have no room for the main course.
7. Something Sweet to finish
Because this is a ‘lazy gal’s guide’ I’ve outsourced the sweets to ALDI’s dessert freezer section. They have a really nice range of ready-made sweet treats that take no time at all to prepare. We enjoyed a delicious Custard Danish topped with double cream and some Apple and Blackberry Tarts. Emma was a bit partial to those and gobbled up two!
8. Enlist family and friends to help with the washing up!
You’ve done all the hard work making a delicious meal, so it’s only fair that someone else do the washing up. If you aren’t lucky enough to have friends that help clean up unprompted, just ask for a hand, most will be happy to help.
If you want the kids to give you a hand with clearing, maybe clean up the dinner plates before dessert to give them an incentive to help out. It’s amazing how helpful kids can be when there are sweets on offer.
9. Pack up leftovers for your lunch the next day
Leftover roast meat sandwiches are the best! Pop those sides into a lunchbox and you’re sorted.
I actually made a really tasty vegetable soup with all the left-over side dishes. They all went into a pot with some veggie stock and a handful of pasta, and dinner on Monday night was ready.
10. Enjoy your friends and family
The best thing about a big Sunday Roast Lunch is getting your friends and family together for a big catch-up. Enjoy the food, have some laughs and enjoy your time together.
Is Sunday Roast Lunch a regular feature in your family’s weekend?