Four in ten Brits think roast potatoes should be replaced for ideal Sunday lunch
A traditional roast dinner is a thing of beauty.
You can almost smell the beef roasting, while the chef scrambles to calculate how long the roasties need to turn the perfect shade of golden.
Hold on, what’s happening? Mashed potatoes are on the menu? No roasties today?
But aren’t they a classic part of the meal, and no Sunday lunch is complete without them?
Really, there are no actual rules for a roast dinner – but people do have their (strongly held) preferences and beliefs and woe betide those who clash.
It turns out that roast potatoes are facing a challenge from mash for a place on our plates.
Four in 10 Brits now believe mashed potatoes should be part of the roast dinner, a poll has found.
The North was found to be a stronghold for roasties with backing from six out of 10, while in the South-East support dropped to half of those quizzed.
The survey by Tesco also found that 3% of 18 to 34-year-olds wanted baked beans as a side for their roast dinner.
Gravy is favourite with 60% in favour, easily beating bread sauce on 10% and ketchup at 5%.
According to the Tesco Roast Index, beef and chicken are the favourite roast centrepieces – but meat is no longer widely considered mandatory.
A whopping 66% of adults said they’d be willing to try a non-meat main, and nearly half (41%) would try a vegan roast.
Only a quarter of Brits surveyed insisted that the main should be eaten at lunchtime.
But while most would use an oven, 20% said they would consider cooking the joint on a barbecue.
A Tesco spokesman said: “Traditional doesn’t have to be boring, however, and our new research shows that people are embracing ways to mix up their meal with beef, rather than lamb, proving to be the most popular meat of choice, and plant-based alternatives also making their way onto the menu.
“The research also points to the different ways the nation enjoys their vegetables. In fact, despite 68% of the nation stating that roasted potatoes are the only way to enjoy a spud with a roast, mash is preferred in some part of the country.
“In Sheffield, almost three-quarters of people choose to mash their potatoes, while in Edinburgh it is just over half.”