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Dish of the Day: What would your last meal be?

Dan Doherty

Roast 300x225 Dish of the Day: What would your last meal be?One of the questions you get asked most as a chef is ‘what would your last meal be?’

The answer is a no-brainer – a Sunday roast. Now, this presents another question, ‘how do you do a Sunday roast at your restaurant?’ The answer to that question is also a no-brainier. I don’t.

Now, first let me explain why I adore a roast (like it needs explaining). Of course, roast chicken with stuffing, lots of roasties, carrots, greens, gallons of gravy, a misplaced Yorkie, needs no justification, it’s the food of the gods. Eating it satisfies a week-long craving, of course.

But it’s also the nostalgia that pulls at the heart strings. I remember playing football on a Sunday afternoon, getting home, listening to a game on the radio in the bath, whilst the smell of meat and potatoes roasting waft up through the house. Or of coming back from working in a roast-less Switzerland to Mum’s house to the same treatment. It’s medicine for the soul. Family or friends gathering on a Sunday? A time for the roast then.

So, why don’t I serve it in the restaurant? Every time a roast gets eaten, it inevitably gets compared to one made by another person. Mum’s or dad’s. Or whoever it was who made “your” roast, you get my drift. It will rarely, if ever compare, and it’s not just the nostalgic element that prevents it from winning out. Think about it. When a roast is done at home, you’re doing it for four, maybe six people, it gets roasted, comes out of the oven and gets eaten. Fresh, fluffy crispy roast potatoes, well rested meat that doesn’t need reheating.

In a restaurant, roasts get served all day, from 12 until early evening. So, unless you have a wealth of space and an army of chefs, it will have to be regenerated. Meaning, roasties are ready at 12, then as the day goes on, will be reheated throughout the service. Meat too. It simply won’t ever quite compare.

Some say not serving a roast is a cop out, I call it respect.

@DanDoherty_ and duckandwaffle.com

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  • YesMinster

    A large Ricard

    Omlette baveuse aux fines herbes with smoked salmon,

    Eau de vie

    Blinis with Sevruga caviar,

    Grappa

    Grilled goats cheese in a mixed salad,

    Usquebaugh

    Tournedos Rossini made with truffled foie gras and pommes alumettes

    with a bottle of The Widow

    Crepes Suzette made with Grand Marnier, Courvoisier and with vanilla ice cream

    Exotic Fruit salad with paw paw, lychee, carambola, strawberries and Cointreau

    Brie, Camembert, Stilton

    with Chateau Yquem

    Competitive tasting between Courvoisier and Remy Martin

    Come midnight a six pack and a pizza

  • BigJC

    Agree wholeheartedly about the roast. I never eat one outside my house or my parents. I have never eaten a decent roast potato in any restaurant, pub etc simply because it can’t be done in that environment.


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