Stress-free family feasting

After the initial Fresher’s week scramble in the union to find the perfect academic family, the notion of getting to know your new relatives can be somewhat daunting. But as I learned from my fabulous academic mother, a little culinary ingenuity is all you need to break the ice!

Parents, its time to unleash your hospitable side! Take your fledgling Freshers under your wings and throw them a typical St. Andrews dinner party: simple yet resplendent, and flowing with wine.  

These simple recipes will help you create a delicious dinner, if not everlasting family harmony. Don’t stress—anything is better than hall food!

Roast Chicken, Roast Potatoes and Vegetables


1 chicken – preferably free range
1 lemon cut in half
Pinch of mixed herbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Potatoes – peeled and chopped into 3 or 4 pieces
Sunflower oil

Your choice of vegetables


Preheat oven to 180°C. Place chicken on a roasting tin. Squeeze one half of the lemon over the chicken and stuff the remaining half inside the cavity. Sprinkle mixed herbs over the chicken and season. Cook chicken for 90 minutes (will be nice and golden). To make sure it is cooked stick a sharp knife into one of the legs—any juice running out will be clear. There are no prizes for giving your academic children food poisoning!!

While the chicken cooks, prepare the potatoes. Put them in a saucepan with salty cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 5 – 10 minutes. Drain the potatoes place on a warm baking tray. Drizzle with sunflower oil – just a little, don’t drown them! Cook for 1 hour.

If you are not too stressed or exhausted at this point, prepare some vegetables – or alternatively have a glass of wine and serve frozen peas!

For dessert: Eton Mess


1 punnet of strawberries
300ml of whipping cream
1 meringue per person
a dash of Pimms


Dice the strawberries and soak them in a splash of Pimms for an added twist. Whip the cream until it forms soft peaks. Lightly smash the meringues and fold into the cream with the strawberries. Serve in teacups for a vintage feel.

P.S. Fathers it’s your turn to do the washing up! 


Images sourced from A Well Traveled Woman, Bon Appetit and Notions & Notations of a Novice Cook