LEVEL C2 – THE ROAST DINNER
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- Roasted meat
- Mashed potato
- Yorkshire pudding
- Roast dinner
- To stretch back to
- Yeoman of the Guard
- The royal bodyguard
- The nobility
- A spit
- A huge fireplace
- Less well off
- To drop off
- A modest cut
- Local baker
- En route to church
- To bake bread
- Bread ovens
- To hand it back
- The villagers
- A patriotic ballad
- Enriched our blood
- People of good substance
- Until they can swallow no more
- Corn flour
- Mashed swede
- Roast parsnip
- Steamed cabbage
- Green beans
- Boiled carrots
- Not a set rule
- Celebratory roasts
- The dinner table
- It is in decline
- Impacting on the family unit
- Short on time
- A vegetarian option
- Nut roast
- Falling out of favour
- Slaving over an oven
- The latter
- A drive in the country
LESSON 100 DIALOGUE
– Roast dinner –
Lesson 100 – Roast dinner
The roast dinner is a British meal that is traditionally served on Sundays, consisting of roasted meat, roast potato or mashed potato, with accompaniments such as Yorkshire pudding, stuffing, vegetables and gravy. It is also referred to as Sunday dinner, Sunday lunch and Roast dinner. The idea of the Sunday roast has a long history that stretches back to 15th Century Britain and was perhaps borne of the British love of beef that has become such a part of the British national identity. So much so that the French call Britons “rosbifs” (roast beefs) and the Yeoman of the Guard, the royal bodyguard, who would dine on fresh roasted beef every Sunday after church, have been affectionately known as “beefeaters” since the 15th century.
The nobility would hang an animal on a spit in front of a huge fireplace and slowly roast it. Whilst those less well off, who had no way to cook the meat would drop off a modest cut to their local baker en route to church. The bakers, who did not bake bread on Sundays, would use their empty bread ovens to cook the meat and hand it back to the villagers in time for lunch. Such actions eventually held a kind of religious and social importance. So swiftly important did the roast beef and this tradition become, that in 1731, Henry Fielding included a patriotic ballad called “The Roast Beef of Old England” in his play “The Grub-Street Opera”
When mighty Roast Beef was the Englishman’s food,
It ennobled our brains and enriched our blood.
Our soldiers were brave and our courtiers were good
Oh! the Roast Beef of old England,
And old English Roast Beef!
In 1698, Henri Misson, the French writer and traveller observed:
“It is a common practice, even among people of good substance, to have a huge piece of roast-beef on Sundays, of which they stuff until they can swallow no more, and eat the rest cold, without any other victuals, the other six Days of the Week”.
The meat used for the sunday roast changed according to tastes, accessibility and affordability. Typical meats are roast beef, chicken, lamb or pork, although seasonally duck, goose, gammon, turkey may be used. The vegetables served with the meat varied seasonally and regionally but typical accompaniments were usually roast potatoes and gravy. The gravy being made from the juices released by the roasting meat and supplemented with corn flour. Other vegetables served with the roast dinner can include mashed swede or turnip, roast parsnip, boiled or steamed cabbage, broccoli, green beans and boiled carrots and peas. Although a Sunday roast is essentially considered “meat and three veg”, this is not a set rule and is certainly disregarded at celebratory roasts such as on Christmas Day.
Where once the Sunday roast was considered a time for families or friends to get together and share great food, it seems to be that this traditional get-together around the dinner table is in decline. With more and more people living away from their families or being too time-poor to spend a day cooking. This is not to say that it is impacting on the family unit, in its place families tend towards eating together on the weekdays and Saturday. The coming of the digital age bringing with it ‘digital dinners’, with families congregating around the television rather than around the dinner table. For those who can afford it but are short on time, many British pubs that serve food have a Sunday menu that features a Sunday roast, usually with a variety of meats and often a vegetarian option such as a nut roast.
Another reason why the tradition may be falling out of favour is the introduction of foreign cuisines like curry and pizza. Especially when considering the takeaway culture that is prevalent throughout the UK. Such cuisines offer more variety and the ease of simply ordering the food rather than slaving over an oven for several hours. The latter should also be considered when we realise what an interactive society we live in. For many families, Sunday is likely the only day they could all be together and instead of prepping, boiling and roasting, they would rather go out, perhaps for a drive in the country, attending the cinema or visiting the zoo.
COMPREHENSION QUIZZES (3 to complete)
Interactive Video Comprehension Quiz 1:
Summary Statements Comprehension Quiz 2:
Drag and Drop Quiz 3:
GRAMMAR PRACTICE: FUTURE AND COMPARATIVES REVISION
The simple future is used to describe actions that will take place in the future. It also expresses a certain degree of certainty.
I will play on their team next year.
|WILL + BARE INFINITIVE (Infinitive without “to”)||I will learn Spanish before moving to Argentina.|
|SHALL + BARE INFINITIVE (Infinitive without “to”) (Less frequent)||I shall learn Spanish before moving to Argentina.|
In spoken English, people use the abbreviated form “´LL” and not “WILL” or “SHALL”.
I’ll learn Spanish before moving to Argentina.
I’ll play on their team next year.
|QUESTIONS||Will + subject + bare infinitive + ?
Will + subject + NOT + bare infinitive + ?
Won’t + subject + bare infinitive + ?
|Will you come too?
Will you not come too?
Won’t you come to?
|NEGATIVEFORM||Will + NOT + bare infinitive. /Won’t + bare infinitive.
Shall + NOT + bare infinitive. /Shan’t + bare infinitive.
|We will not come. /We won’t come.
We shall not come. /We shan’t come.
The future can be used with adverbs such as:
|NEXT MONTH||NEXT YEAR||LATER ON|
|SOME DAY||ONE DAY||NEXT SUMMER|
I will be doing something, is used for describing a situation that you will be doing in the future.
This time next week I will be on holiday.
Tomorrow morning I will be working.
This construction can also be used to talk about completed actions in the future.
I am not feeling well, so I will not be coming out tonight.
Later today I will be meeting the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
In this instance, the use of the construction “will be doing something” is similar to using “to be going to do something”.
The construction “will have done” is used to express that something will already be complete before a time in the future.
Paul will not be here at 5 o’clock as he will have gone to work.
This is not to be confused with the present perfect or past perfect.
Tom and Amy have been married for 16 years (Present Perfect)
When he finally arrived, they had been waiting for 30 minutes. (Past Perfect)
ONSTRUCTIONS WITH WHEN
These constructions usually have two parts.
Although the first part of the sentence refers to a future event using the future tense, in English we use a present tense in the second part of the sentence, although the event is still considered to be in the future.
Not: I will study a lot when I will go to university.
It is the same when we use words such as while, before, after, as soon as, until or till. You can use the present perfect after when, after, until and as soon as.
It is important to note here that when using the present perfect in this way, one action must be completed before the other one can begin.
Therefore if the two things happen together, you cannot use the present perfect.
Often, the present simple and present perfect are interchangeable.
After if, we usually use the present simple when referring to the future.
Be careful when using when and if.
There are three possibilities:
|=||AS…AS||Her food is as good as at the restaurant. Su comida es tan buena como la del restaurante.|
|For adjectives with 3 syllables or more, we use: more…than… |
Learning Chinese is more difficult than learning English.
Aprender chino es más difícil que aprender inglés.less…than…
Learning English is less time-consuming than learning Chinese.
Aprender inglés requiere menos tiempo que aprender chino.
|For adjectives of 1 or 2 syllables, do not use “more“: we put “-er” at the end of the adjective.BIG |
He is bigger.
El es más fuerte.QUICK
She is quicker.
Ella es más rápida.
There are two possibilities:
|THE MOST |
|Her house is the most amazing. |
Su casa es la más impresionante.
Her dog is the least friendly.
|For adjectives with 1 or 2 syllables, we do not use “the most”: We use “the…” y “est” at the end of the adjective. Sometimes, doubling the final consonant.BIG |
He is the biggest.
El es el más fuerte.QUICK
She is the quickest.
Ella es la más rápida.
(-Y → -IEST)
There are exceptions: GOOD (bien, bueno) → THE BEST (el mejor) BAD (malo) → THE WORST.
- Related Pronunciation Video Lesson and interactive exercise(s): Future
- Related Pronunciation Video Lesson and interactive exercise(s): comparatives and superlatives
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