Nick Mosley ponders Sunday Roasts and alternatives on offer in our city.
There are many ideas of where the modern Sunday roast originated but the most likely is from the early days of the Industrial Revolution in the 1700s. The joint of meat would be put into the family’s rudimentary oven as they prepared for church, meaning the main part of the meal would be perfectly cooked on their return. The religious connection with Sunday lunch is strong as it would be the most lavish meal of the week when any food type could be eaten as – for example – traditionally Christians would abstain from fish on Fridays.
All well and good but personally I find the Sunday roast a rather tiresome and boring option for possibly my only relaxing meal of the week to enjoy leisurely with family and friends. But thankfully alternative options abound in Brighton & Hove.
A particular favourite is The Chilli Pickle in Jubilee Square which offers an amazing value King Thali featuring around a dozen different tasty elements for around £15. They also serve up their infamous Pork Knuckle Vindaloo – a whole crispy pork knuckle served with vindaloo gravy, green apple kachumber, aloo jeera and butter naan. Its the perfect dish to share, and as Chilli Pickle offers two for one cocktails on Sunday lunchtimes then you can forget about your warm pint of Sussex Best too.
“Our customers love a Sunday lunch feast”, says Sanchia Gladwin of The Chilli Pickle. “The diversity of flavours and the range of dishes mean the whole table can share, thus creating a real family feel to the meal. We have regular guests and their families who dine with us every Sunday. It’s nice to see so many of our customers families grow over the years”.
Up the road at The Pond pub on Gloucester Road in North Laine, the flavour at Sunday lunch times is distinctly far eastern.
“We are fortunate to have the superb Baby Bao in our kitchen”, says landlord Aaron Williams. “These guys hand-make Taiwanese steamed rice buns known as bao and offer Asian fusion small plates too. On a Sunday they do Bo Saam which is a traditional sharing dish in Korea, usually consisting of thinly sliced pork with varying accompaniments including spicy homemade kimchi”.
The sharing plate at The Pond is a very reasonable £14 per person for meat option, whilst the vegan option is just £12.
Amanda Menahem, proprietor of the highly regarded Pascere on Duke Street, has a more luxurious take on Sunday lunch.
“On Sunday’s we offer our small plate menu as it allows diners to order a variety of dishes and pick at different tastes and flavours, rather than just one big main course”, says Amanda. “Our roast chicken croquettes are very popular, and a modern and lighter way to enjoy Sunday roast flavours”.
Pascere’s Sunday lunch option is £45 for two people including a choice of six small plates to share and unlimited Prosecco.
The city offers a plethora of other alternative Sunday lunch options. How’s about Swiss style raclette at The French Horn on Dyke Road, or a spicy burrito bowl at La Choza on Western Road. Brighton’s food scene definitely goes to show that there’s more to life than Yorkshire pudding on a Sunday.