Best of British: 8 Favourite Foods

Best of British: 8 Favourite Foods

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The next two weeks play host to British Food Fortnight, a celebration of all produce from the United Kingdom.

The next two weeks play host to British Food Fortnight, a celebration of all produce from the United Kingdom.

British Food Fortnight was created in 2002, following the Foot and Mouth crisis. Many people were suspicious of meat that was raised in Britain, as they were afraid of catching the disease. The two weeks of celebrating local British produce were created as a means to promote the benefits of buying British.

We took a poll in the office to determine which British foods we all enjoyed, find the 8 most popular below…

1. Bangers and Mash

Otherwise known as sausage and mash, bangers and mash is an old favourite that is just as likely to be served on the dinner table as it is on a pub menu.  Eaten as early as 1919, sausages are known as bangers due to their tendency to pop when placed under a high heat, back when they were made with a high water content. Luckily, these days the sausages we eat are of a much better quality, and will rarely go ‘bang’, however the name has stuck!

2. Pie

Steak and kidney, chicken and leek, meat and potato: pies come in a massive variety of flavours, and everyone has their favourite. The first reference to pies as food was back in the 1100’s, when they were called ‘pyes’. You may have sung the nursery rhyme ‘Sing a Song of Sixpence’ when you were younger, and while the line ‘four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie’ sounds like a meal made up specifically for a children’s tale, it is in fact true. In the olden days, it was common for Kings to eat song birds such as peacocks in pies, and blackbirds were also a common filling.

3. Trifle

This much loved dessert, normally spotted at family parties and at Christmas dinners, can be made in many different ways, with many different flavours. Some prefer a plain fruit flavour, such as orange or cherry, whilst others prefer a more adult trifle, and choose to flavour theirs with alcoholic drinks such as sherry. Trifle can be dated as far back as 1587, where a pudding of flavoured cream was referred to as trifle, however throughout the years it has evolved, adding jelly, fruits and sponge cake to make the dessert known today.

4. Roast Dinner

Every Sunday, families all over the country sit down around the table to eat a Sunday roast together. The meal normally consists of a roasted meet such as beef, lamb or chicken, along with potatoes and vegetables. Some people have accompaniments such as Yorkshire pudding or stuffing, with most people pouring gravy on. There are differing opinions on where the Sunday roast originated from, some people claim it heralds from churchgoers in Yorkshire, who would put meat in the oven before leaving for church – allowing it to cook while they were out. Others claim that it dates back even further, to medieval times, when village serfs were rewarded every Sunday with a feast of oxen.

5. Scouse

It is thought that Scouse, a type of stew made from beef or lamb, comes from the term ‘lobscouse’, which was a simple stew made by nineteenth century sailors. The introduced the dish to the port of Liverpool, boiling meat, onions and pepper with a type of cracker carried on their ships. After being adopted by the people of Liverpool, the dish evolved into something similar to a Lancashire hotpot, with potatoes and vegetables added to the pot. In Liverpool, the disk is often served with pickled beetroot and bread.

6. Egg & Chips

Said to be the favourite food of John Lennon, a firm British favourite comfort food is egg and chips. Although originally considered a dish for the working class, due to it being cheap and easy to cook, people all over the country enjoy the dish regularly. It is considered a very British dish, with the World-Cup winners in 1966 stopping to get a plate of egg and chips, after growing tired of the fancy foods they were being served. Even top chefs agree, with Michelin-starred chef Heston Blumenthal commenting: “You can’t get much more British a dish than fried egg and chips.”

7. Strawberries and Cream

First developed as a dessert during the rule of King Henry VIII, strawberries and cream is a simple, but crowd-pleasing, dish. Although the dessert has been around for centuries, it is most well-known for being one of the traditions at the annual tennis tournament, Wimbledon. At the 2014 tournament, 142,000 portions of strawberries were sold, which totals 28,000kg of strawberries and 7,000 litres of cream!

8. Fry Up

A fry up, also known as a Full Breakfast, is a staple hangover breakfast for many. Although it is called a breakfast, it is acceptable to eat this meal at any time of the day, with pubs and restaurants serving it as an ‘All Day Breakfast’. With different variations in different areas, there are individual breakfasts in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales! The usual staples are bacon, egg, sausage, beans and toast, however different types of fry up can feature foods such as black pudding, fried bread, fried onions and hash browns.

If you are interested in cooking and want to keep it as safe as possible, why not take a look at our Food Hygiene course?

Nick Cooper
Nick is NCC's resident blog author and covers a range of subjects, including teaching and health & social care. NCC is an international learning provider with over 20 years’ experience offering learning solutions. To date, NCC has engaged with over 20,000 employers, and delivered quality training to over half a million learners.
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