I love to cook and I find it quite relaxing to shut myself in the kitchen with a pile of ingredients and emerge later with something that is, hopefully, delicious.
Chicken curry is my specialty but I often have to make two batches – a spicy one for my heat-loving taste buds and another, milder version for my partner Serena and my daughters, who don’t like their food so hot.
In theory, preapring a roast should be relatively easyWarren Hayden
But there is one dish I have never tackled and it is one of my favourite things to tuck into.
I’m talking about that traditional British meal, the Sunday roast.
It has always seemed too much of a chore and I’ve always been lucky enough to have parents, in-laws and a girlfriend who all make delicious mouth-watering roast dinners.
And it seems I’m not the only one with this opinion.
According to an article I read recently, the traditional Sunday roast is on the wane in an age of fast food and spicy alternatives.
Although British families have been feasting on the meal since medieval times, nowadays, apparently, families simply can’t find the time it takes to cook a roast.
In today’s fast-paced world, when we all have such busy lifestyles, many people prefer a meal that takes a lot less preparation.
And, so I’m told, in theory, preparing a roast should be relatively easy.
However, it is suggested that in 2016 when it is fashionable to take a photo of your food and post it on social media, there is more pressure than ever to cook the perfect joint of meat and the best crispy roast potatoes eve tasted.
My biggest fear has always been getting my timings right.
How on earth do you make sure the potatoes, joint, vegetables and gravy will all be ready at the same time with nothing left to go cold?
Well, after almost 12 years with Serena and almost seven as a dad, I finally took the plunge and attempted my first Sunday roast.
Well, there is one little porky there: I’m always presenting my Heart radio show on a Sunday afternoon so it was actually a Thursday roast dinner, but the same rules applied.
As usual I shut myself in the kitchen and got to work preparing the chicken for the oven and peeling the potatoes and vegetables.
Luckily Serena was on hand in the living room to answer my questions.
About two hours later I emerged from the kitchen with four plates of my Thursday roast which I’m told tasted very nice.
I’ve got a long way before I hit my family’s high standards, but I was pleased with the result.
So, the roast dinner is still well and truly alive in the Hayden household.
However, I admit I didn’t enjoy the next bit so much... the washing up.