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Mother decided what she would like for Christmas dinner is a roast.

Oh the horror.

This came out of left field; I was not expecting this. I figured she would want a honey-baked ham or one of her casseroles viz. something I know how to make (or where to order such). I have never cooked a roast.  I am having ominous visions of putting down my ‘first attempt’ roast on Christmas day in front of a dozen diners – and it is dry or burned or flavorless. I am in a bit of a panic on this. I have three weeks to figure out what to do here.

First question: what exactly is a roast – is it the same thing as roast beef?  I suppose I can go to the supermarket and admit I haven’t a clue and hope they don’t sell me the beef-equivalent of  “summer rain’ perfume.  It’s like asking for directions. Don’t real men know what beef is and how to cook it?

SIL #3’s father is a butcher. I bet she knows what is a roast. Perhaps if I ask her sweetly she will tell me what to look for or better yet get me a proper roast no rubbish.  However I probably have to brine the thing for a few days ahead of Christmas day cooking so perhaps I am on my own.  My parents shop at Kroger goodness knows if they have roasts.

Second question: Is there more than one way to cook the damn thing? Is there a proper method? I hope it isn’t too difficult.

On the other hand I have lots of cookbooks to cruise through I bet one of them can tell me what to do. I will forgo The Moosehead cookbook on this one and The Vegetarian Times is probably useless too. I may just directly go to YouTube and hope it has some oh-so-practical videos on the topic.

My third question of ignorance is about the trimmings. Photos on the internet succulent beefy joints surmounted by cooked carrots and potatoes. This sounds kind of bland to me. I wonder if I can serve a roast with other sides or is this blasphemy?

What’s driving all this angst is Mother of course. It’s rather Freudian in a way. Imagine Mother getting home finally and sitting down to the long-awaited roast only to look down and see it isn’t properly done. Mother is far to nice too Midwestern to say what did you do to this and where the hell did you get this bristle slab – but I will know.

Spo-fans who know are Roast-masters (and mistresses)  are invited to leave tips and advice in the comments.

“Mother, this is blogger-roast, you’ll love it!”