This Mother’s Day, you don’t need to take Mum to a fancy restaurant to make her feel special. Save money on dining out and impress her with a gourmet roast dinner for the whole family, in the comfort of your own home.
I’m not suggesting you invite Mary Berry over to lend a hand in the kitchen (as tempting as that sounds)! Just head to M&S and pick up a joint of meat, two large sides, a family-sized dessert and a bottle of wine – all for just £20.
Choose either a beef roasting joint, gammon joint, half lamb leg, turkey joint, pork loin, nut roast, whole chicken or Scottish Lochmuir salmon.
Having picked your preferred joint, team it up with two large traditional sides. Options include roast potatoes, parsnips, parmentier potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and stuffing.
Meanwhile, for dessert, a number of sweet treats are available such as sticky toffee pudding, profiteroles, chocolate brownie tray bake and strawberry trifle.
When you’ve polished off your roast dinner, you can wash it down with a glass of wine or bubbly. The deal includes a number of quality wines (white, rose and red) in addition to a bottle of Prosecco.
The taste test
I tried out the M&S Mother’s Day dine-in deal with some friends, opting for the beef roasting joint with honey and mustard roast parsnips and roast potatoes, followed by raspberry and coconut macaroon pudding and served with a glass of Prosecco Frizzante.
The beef roasting joint was British topside, weighing in at almost 1kg, and you could pick your own cut. This alone would normally have cost £10.62 – over half the total cost of the dine-in deal.
The pack instructions said to cook the beef at 155 degrees for 35 mins per 500g (medium-rare), but we cooked it for longer than this because there was still blood running out of it when we cut into it after 70 minutes. Admittedly, however, I did turn the oven up halfway through cooking the beef because the roast potatoes required a higher temperature, so perhaps this meant that the meat took longer to cook inside.
In total we cooked the beef joint for around an hour and forty-five minutes, until it was slightly crispy on the outside. I seasoned it with Anglesey sea salt prior to cooking to help with this.
This beef was definitely worth the wait! It was tender, succulent and full of flavour, with barely any fat on it. It could have fed up to four people easily.
I love roast potatoes but wasn’t in the mood to slave over a hot stove for hours, so we opted for the roasties as a side. These came in a large tray, with plenty to go round the whole family.
Apparently these roasties had ‘a special coating for crispiness’, but I had to baste them with beef fat several times and cook them for longer than the packet advised to get them to crisp up. They had a creamy, buttery taste, but they just weren’t the same as home-cooked roast potatoes.
For our second side, we went for the honey and mustard roast parsnips. Like the roast potatoes, these were served in a large foil tray and the serving was more than ample for four people.
I served the beef, roast potatoes and parsnips with carrot and swede mash, petit pois, leeks and homemade Yorkshire puddings and a rich gravy, making for a hearty Sunday roast.
For dessert, we chose the raspberry and coconut macaroon pudding because it sounded quite different and unique.
At first impressions, this looked similar to a fruit crumble. However, upon cutting through the crumbly coconut topping, we found a light coconut sponge sitting on a bed of hot raspberry compote.
This was a delicious dessert and the coconut tasted great with the raspberry, although next time I would serve it with custard or icecream as it seemed a bit dry.
The Prosecco Frizzante was the ideal finishing touch for such a spectacular meal, and would make for the perfect drink to toast Mum with on Mother’s Day.
All of this food would normally have cost over £35, but as it was part of the M&S Mother’s Day deal it only cost £20. So, take my advice and don’t go splashing out a restaurant on Mother’s Day – get the whole family together for a roast to remember!
The M&S Mother’s Day deal is running in selected stores from 11th – 15th March. To check out the full menu, head to the M&S website.
*The products featured in this review were provided to me complimentary by M&S, but I was not obliged to write a positive review.