Tips for a Perfect Carved Christmas Roast

A traditional Christmas lunch just wouldn't be right without a nice, juicy roast to serve up. Despite the warm weather in Australia, many people couldn't imagine their Christmas without it.

It often falls to the nearest male to take up the position of Official Roast Carver on Christmas Day, a job he only undertakes once a year and is therefore sadly under-qualified for. The hacked-up meat that is served up as a result seems incongruous with the decadently decorated Christmas table with its pristine tablecloth, shiny baubles and neatly folded festive napkins.

It doesn't have to be this way. You can have a roast that will not be out of place nestled on your best Christmas china. Carving meat is easy if you know how.

Firstly, it is important to use a very sharp knife when carving meat. This makes the job much easier for you as the knife will do all the work. Use a large knife such as a cook’s knife. A chopping board with a drip channel is a good choice for carving as it will catch the juices from the meat before they run onto the table.

Now, follow these three easy steps to achieve your perfectly carved roast. We used lamb to demonstrate, but the basic technique is the same whatever the meat.

1. Most roasts are easier to carve when cooked medium-rare or medium. Use a meat thermometer to get the best results. Place the probe of the thermometer in the centre of the thickest part of the roast (not touching bone). Remove the roast from the oven when the desired temperature has been reached. Rest the meat in a warm place for 10-15 minutes before carving. If a lot of juice runs out, the meat hasn’t rested for long enough.

2. When ready to carve, anchor the meat firmly with a two-pronged carving fork. Carving away from your body, cut several slices parallel to the length of the roast. Try to avoid puncturing the meat too many times with the carving fork as some of the meat juices will escape with each puncture.

3. Turn the roast so that it rests on the surface just cut. Hold it firmly with the fork and cut a small wedge from the shank end. This will make the next slices easier to cut and release from the bone. Keep the fork in place to steady the roast and cut thin slices down to the leg bone.

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About The Author, Felicity Mcdougall
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