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Thursday, December 18, 2008

EATING FOR BRITAIN: FIFTY DISHES TO FIND MYSELF






As I mentioned a couple of posts ago, I am off on the road again once the New Year hits us.

This time, my search is for the fifty dishes that I have chosen to help define what being British means through the food we eat. It could be everything from fish & chips (from up North, of course) to Cornish pasties, from chopped liver to chicken tikka masala.

As with EAT MY GLOBE, I am hoping to meet some amazing people on my travels and have already received some incredible invitations for everything from making seaside rock in Blackpool to shrimping in Morcambe Bay, from spending a day in the kitchens of Tayyabs to beating on The Glorious Twelfth.

Here is my list so far

BAKING
Cream Tea (Devon)
Afternoon Tea (London)
Victoria Sponge
Bakewell Tart (Derbyshire)
Parkin (Yorkshire)
Apple Pie (Herefordshire)
Eccles Cake/Chorley Cake (Lancashire)

SOUPS & STEWS
Cullen Skink (Scotland)
Irish Stew (Northern Ireland)
Lobscouse (Merseyside)
Cawl (Wales)

MEAT
Ulster Fry (Northern Ireland)
Haggis (Scotland)
Faggots (Wales)
Lancashire Hot Pot (Lancashire)
Rabbit Pie (Suffolk)
Gammon/Ham
Black Pudding (Lancashire)
Shepherd’s Pie (Lincolnshire)
Roast Beef & Yorkshire Pudding (Yorkshire)
Bangers & Mash/Cumberland sausage (Northumbria)
Steak & Kidney pudding
Clanger (Bedfordshire)
Grouse (Scotland)
Pan Haggerty (Tyneside)

FISH
Jellied Eels (Essex/London)
Potted Shrimp (Northumbria)
Manx Kippers (Isle of Man)
Cromer Crab (Norfolk)
Stargazey Pie (Cornwall)
Fish & Chips (North Yorkshire)
Smoked Salmon (Scotland)

PUDDINGS
Spotted Dick
Sherry Trifle
Pond Pudding (Sussex)
Cranachan (Scotland)


NEW ARRIVALS
Chopped Liver (London)
Curry Goat/Jerk Chicken (Birmingham)
Curry/Balti/Chicken Tikka Masala ( West Yorkshire)

SNACKS
Dules (Northern Ireland)
Welsh Rarebit (Wales)
Piccalilli (London)
Pork Scratchings (West Midlands)
Pork Pie (Nottinghamshire)
Cornish Pasty (Cornwall)
Cheddar Cheese/ Ploughman’s Lunch (Somerset)
Bacon Butty (London)

JUST PLAIN WEIRD
Deep Fried Mars bars/Pizza/Anything (Scotland)
Laver Bread (Wales)
Blackpool Rock (Lancashire)

DRINKS
Scrumpy Cider (Somerset)
Beer (Derbyshire)
Gin & Tonic (London)
Guinness (Ireland)

It’s not definitive and there are more than 50 dishes here as some will no doubt fall by the wayside. However, if anyone has any great suggestions, wants to invite me to share in something they make or produce or simply wants to join part of the journey, please do contact me via the Facebook group I have created for the trip

The book will be published by John Murray in 2010 and of course I shall be posting about my experiences here on Dos Hermanos.
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12 Comments:

Anonymous M.R.Moss said...

I would drop dishes that are duplicated elsewhere like the apple pie/sherry trifle (and they are poor in the UK!),and focus on some more unique UK items that are not duplicated elsewhere-e.g. treacle tart/pudding;bread and butter pudding;more offal dishes(oxtail?chitterlings?knuckle?etc);bubble and squeak;toad in the hole;chip butties;melton mowbray pies?etc
And what about HP sauce;Lea and Perrins;salad cream;horseradish sauce-these are uniquely UK!
And of course....custard-only the brits drown everything with this concoction (that comes out of a tin of yellow powder) at the end of a meal and smack their lips in satisfaction!

Thursday, December 18, 2008 2:14:00 pm  
Anonymous Choan said...

Under snacks, you probably mean dulse, rather than dules...

Thursday, December 18, 2008 2:17:00 pm  
Anonymous C.Elder said...

Hasn't Rick Stein done a cook-aound-the uk bit already featuring these?And Marco p.White did something similar too ,not that long ago.
I thought you were going to do something in the US,like the dish that defines each of the 50(or is it 52?excuse my ignorance) states.
Best place to eat it there, along with the closest 2 others in each State etc etc.That way you could have a great time travelling there.Who knows, the US Travel bureau or a US TV station might sponsor you or defray the expenses as it would boost tourism there.

Thursday, December 18, 2008 2:21:00 pm  
Blogger Hermano 2 said...

Choan - Yes, typo, apologies

CElder, this is hopefully very different from both the Stein and White journeys. The US book will follow.

M.R Moss - the Sherry trifle is a truly British concotion and when done well as good as any dessert. But, the other items will be covered as I travel. As I say, the list is not definitive

Cheers

S

Thursday, December 18, 2008 3:04:00 pm  
Blogger Stuart said...

Definitely Arbroath Smokies - way better than Smoked Salmon and a proper regional delicacy. They're actually now protected under the European designated origin scheme:

http://www.arbroathsmokies.net/pgi.php

Thursday, December 18, 2008 5:03:00 pm  
Anonymous Chris B. said...

I always thought pork scratchings were an American thing,from the deep south,like grits and BBQ?
Not really a UK thing?What about "new potatoes",I've never been sure what this meant precisely ,versus "old potatoes" perhaps?But I don't think any other country gets ecstatic about a "new potato".And what about beans on toast?The U.S has "boston baked beans" but these are v.different from the UK bb's.And you need some soups...cock-a-leekie ?just the name is uniquely UK!and kedgeree?also oddly UK.
My French friends are fascinated by parsnips,saying humans don't eat them in France,they are fed only to animals.Although this comment requires us to accept the French as humans.
Anyway,it sounds like you will have fun,and the definitions alone may drive you mad.Perhaps you need to revise the 50 to 100?
Good eating!

Thursday, December 18, 2008 6:03:00 pm  
Anonymous Harters said...

Simon

I'd drop either lobscouse or hotpot as being a bit samey. Not sure which to keep though. Hotpot is better known, but scouse more intriguing.

If you wanted to retain the level of northwest input, how about Grasmere gingerbread or "sticky toffee pudding" (Sharrow Bay Hotel and/or Cartmel).

I see, also, you're doing fish and chips as a North Yorkshire input. Does this suggest Magpie Cafe or the original Harry Ramsden's? You'll be aware the small Lancashire town of Mossley makes the claim for the first F & C shop.

John

Friday, December 19, 2008 11:13:00 am  
Anonymous Harters said...

Northumbrian potted shrimp?

Surely an error and you mean Lancashire or Cumbria (Morecambe Bay)?

Friday, December 19, 2008 4:22:00 pm  
Blogger Hermano 2 said...

Strange, I have Cumbria typed on all my other lists and have even arranged to go to Morcambe in the new year, so I have no idea why I types Northumbria

S

Friday, December 19, 2008 4:50:00 pm  
Blogger Douglas Blyde said...

The gent from 'Eating Albion' could be of great use to you following his C.4 food tour of the U.K. Don't forget English / Welsh wine, olive oil and Scotch.

Saturday, December 20, 2008 4:36:00 pm  
Anonymous Tana said...

Strange, this.

Simon. Couldn't we have sumfing here in Santer Cruz what would make you proud?

I carn't do yer fifty deeshes. Don't live there.

As Logan says, "Yuv you yachts."

XOX

Sunday, December 21, 2008 8:27:00 am  
Blogger pmot said...

Glasgow: ignore the oft-quoted deep fried mars bars, and go for the current cutting edge of Glasgow chip shop inventions - Scoobies and Stonners

http://www.supersizedmeals.com/food/article.php/20060630015057755
http://pakayas.blogspot.com/2007/03/scooby-snack.html

Interestingly, there is also a deep fried pizza equivalent in italy:

"In Italy, there are two local versions of deep fried pizza. The most elaborated recipe consists of two layers of pizza dough sealed one on top of the other with a filling of tomato, cheese, meats and other ingredients in the middle. The simplest, but most popular nationwide, recipe consists of a plain disc of pizza dough taken and deep-fried without any topping, and flavoured with salt (or sugar) after it's cooked. This recipe has received many names across the county (pizzarella in Rome, avvoltolo in Perugia, gnocco fritto in Bologna, torta fritta in Parma and so on)"

Thursday, January 01, 2009 7:42:00 pm  

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