English Cuisine

English Cuisine: Typical English Dishes and Food – 2024

English cuisine , its food and typical dishes represent an experience in taste and traditions , knowing what to eat in England during the trip. Typical recipes of English culture include dishes from the British tradition of the United Kingdom , British cuisine. Influenced by its past, climate and colonial history , traditional English foods still survive in this modern country today, especially in pubs and rural areas. Let’s discover the best typical dishes and English foods, thus making your trip to England complete and unique!

English Cuisine

If you are wondering what the English eat, you are in the right place. The history of England and the cultural influences that have reached Great Britain have created a cuisine with a well-defined tradition. English food, its typical dishes and the cuisine of this country includes simple recipes and sometimes with exotic ingredients . Fruit of its colonial past , without forgetting the comfort food, to be enjoyed in the pubs . Furthermore, English cuisine is distinguished from European cuisine by its preparations and some habits that have become true rituals . Between afternoon teas and rich English breakfasts . If we talk about English foods, the first thing we think of is crunchy fish and chips .

Furthermore, many English recipes are uniquely seasonal , respecting the cycle of ingredients, influenced by its temperate climate and insular geography . Furthermore, thanks to interactions with other cultures , such as India, China and North America , as well as post-war migration , English food is diverse. Among the typical traditional English dishes we find cheeses, roasts, stews, dishes based on potatoes and spices, especially curry . George Boole published The Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy in 1747 , the book that revolutionized English and colonial cuisine at the time. The Industrial Revolution also had a major impact on English foods, making many dishes substandard. Coming to post-war recovery .

So let’s see what you eat in England today during your trip!

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Read also: What to eat in Cambodia – Delicious Khmer cuisine

What to Eat in England and Where

1. Fish and Chips

Among the typical first courses of English cuisine, the popular fish and chips could not be missing. A great classic of British cuisine. It consists of a cod or haddock fillet battered and fried . Accompanied by plenty of french fries and lemon. Furthermore, the recipe for this English food also includes a few drops of malt vinegar , some sauces and boiled peas on the side. Fish and chips is one of the most popular dishes of British cuisine, which you will find throughout the United Kingdom, as well as in Ireland. Also as street food or pub food , accompanied by a good beer .

The history of fish and chips in England begins in 1800 , when the recipe was probably brought to the country by Spanish immigrants. Originating from Andalusia and Catalonia , calling the dish fried pescado. In 1860 the first fish and chip restaurant opened in London . Adapting the Spanish recipe with local fish, such as cod, using potatoes on the side. Another story, however, says that the most typical English dish comes from Venice . Where fried fish was eaten as early as 1700 , calling it fritolino , wrapping it in paper . In 2012 , a record-breaking fry-up took place in London for charity , entering the Guinness Book of Records with 50kg of Fish and Chips!

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Fish and Chips

2. Bangers e Mash

Also called sausage and mash , this is one of the most loved English foods in England . The word bangers to indicate sausages, although it became popular during the Second World War , was already used in 1919 , arriving from the Great War . In that period, in fact, the lack of meat led sausage producers to use a lot of water inside them. Leading them to burst during cooking, hence the term to bang . Various surveys have also highlighted that bangers and mash is the typical dish considered by the English to be the comfort food par excellence throughout the United Kingdom.

A must-eat pub food in England, it is prepared with lamb, beef or pork sausages , accompanied by mashed potatoes. The most famous sausages for the preparation of this English food today are those of Cumberland , accompanying everything with fried onions, their cooking broth and boiled peas. Today, the sausages no longer explode , but the cute name has remained, considering them the quintessence of the English breakfast . Furthermore, every family or pub has a traditional recipe and a unique way to prepare this simple, yet much-loved dish.

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Sausages and mash

3. Bacon Bap

Among the unmissable street foods to eat in England during your trip, don’t miss Bacon Bap. A simple and tasty evergreen of English cuisine, the bacon sandwich is very popular throughout the United Kingdom. Bread, hot bacon and some sauce, such as brown sauce or unsalted butter, create one of the most loved English foods, served in all the cafes in England or at street food stalls in the markets. Furthermore, this typical English dish is also considered an excellent remedy for the after-effects of evenings in which one has overindulged, making it one of the favorites of inveterate pub-goers.

It is generally served hot and with bread toasted on one side only, but many prepare it using the same bread as the hamburgers and not the sandwich bread. There are also many variations of this English food, with different cooking styles, types of bread, oil or additions of special sauces. The one preferred by the English, however, involves fried bacon, crispy and with little fat , between thick slices of white bread. The version that includes the addition of a fried egg , however, is called breggy . A typical English dish that is not exactly dietary, but which we recommend you eat in England during your trip; especially after a night at the pub!

bacon bap
Bacon bap

4. Salt Beef Bagels

What do you eat in London during your trip to England? Entering the historic bakeries , where the freshly baked bagels and symbol of the city have been sold for decades, don’t miss the Salt Beef Bagels. As at Beigel Shop , opened in 1855 , this traditional English food is stuffed with sausage, bacon and ham, remaining open all night to meet the needs of hungry patrons during the nightlife. The reason that makes London’s night bakeries popular, however, is the Salt Beef Beigels .

Specialty of English cuisine which sees the bagel cut in half, then stuffed with hot, thickly sliced ​​corned beef, slow cooked, then adding spicy English mustard and thinly sliced ​​gherkins. A typical English dish as a night snack in London, when these rolls are freshly baked and crunchy. The meat is very soft , thanks to slow cooking, just the right amount of fat and salty, contrasting with the taste of pickle and mustard. Canned salted meat recalls the flavor of brine and, during cooking, the salty note of the seasoning salts stands out.

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Salt beef Bagel, al Beigel Bake Brick Lane Bakery di Londra

5. Bubble and squeak

Among the most popular typical dishes of English cuisine, if you are still wondering what locals eat in England , don’t miss the bubble and squeak. British dish made with cabbage and potatoes cooked together and mixed together, then fried . Literally bubble and crunch , it is called this because of the sounds that this English food makes when cooking and is a very ancient dish of traditional cuisine. The first testimonies about it, in fact, date back to the 18th century , prepared with beef.

It appears for the first time in the book The St James’s Chronicle , in 1762 , seeing it as a typical dish served at an English banquet, during a very abundant meal. The ancient bubble and squeak, however, was different from what we can enjoy today, replacing the beef with potatoes . The ingredient was in fact replaced during the Second World War, when meat was scarce and very expensive. The recipe with potatoes and cabbage was born in the 1900s , becoming one of the main recipes of English rural culture.

bubble and squeak
Bubble and Squeak

6. Pork Pie

Delicious meat pies typical of English cuisine, among the things eaten in England absolutely cannot be missing from a guide to local gastronomy. Small pork pie, served hot, comes from medieval English food and ancient peasant tradition, then refining the recipe. In fact, in the past, shortcrust pastry , together with hot water, was very useful for preserving the quality of the meat for longer, sweetening the filling with fruit . Furthermore, in the medieval period, pastry was not consumed, as it was only a container .

The first appearance of this recipe was in 1390 , in the publication The Forme of Cury and this English food is probably a descendant of the battallia pie . From the 19th century , meat and fruit pies became obsolete, thus disappearing from English tables and cuisine. Furthermore, today there are many variations of the pork pie, such as the Melton Mowbray pork pie , born in 1831 in Leicestershire and among the PDO English foods . Furthermore, we also find the Yorkshire pork pie , served hot accompanied by gravy sauce and crushed peas, or the gala pie, also with hard-boiled eggs . Furthermore, these meat pies are very popular during picnics due to their practicality.

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Pork Pies

7. Sunday Roast

The Sunday roast is among the things eaten in England during the holidays, especially for Sundays spent with the family. A typical dish of English cuisine based on meat, accompanied by vegetables, roast potatoes and sauces . Furthermore, depending on the region we are in and the area of ​​the United Kingdom, this typical English dish is called differently. Originally, it was born as a Sunday dish served by family gatherings after mass , thus eating meat. The most used types of meat are pork, sheep, chicken and beef , but also goose and turkey on special occasions. With roast beef , for example, a horseradish sauce or Yorkshire pudding is served alongside : batter cooked in the oven.

The roast lamb , however, is served with mint sauce and the chicken with blackcurrant sauce. These English foods are served on the same plate, celebrating a meal together with your loved ones, but also during Christmas . Furthermore, the preparation of Sunday roast is very laborious , they start with the preparation of the meat. The main accompaniment is always gravy sauce, thick and prepared with the cooking juices of the meat, with spices and aromatic herbs, adding flour as a thickener, or horseradish : a horseradish-based sauce with a spicy and strong flavour.

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Sunday Roast

8. Chicken Tikka Masala

Although its name can be misleading, chicken tikka masala is among the most typical dishes of English cuisine, considered the true national British dish . Coming from the influences of Indian cuisine, it is a variant of chicken curry born in Glasgow , Scotland, in a Bengali restaurant where the chef improvised a recipe by combining spices with yogurt and chicken. Today we can find this typical English dish everywhere in the world, mistakenly considered to come from Indian cuisine.

This English food is made up of tender pieces of roasted chicken marinated in a spicy and creamy orange-coloured sauce made from yoghurt and spices . The chicken is roasted in the oven and then coriander and tomato are also added. Today there is not just one recipe for this typical English dish, but many are recognized with the addition of coconut milk, cream and masala. One of the most popular dishes eaten in England, as well as the perfect example of how this country has absorbed and adapted the cultural influences that came from the colonies.

Chicken tikka masala
Chicken tikka masala with rice

9. Cottage Pie

Among the typical English dishes that are eaten especially in pubs throughout England, we find the tasty Cottage Pie. Historically known as the workers’ meal , probably even more loved than fish and chips, it is a dish of English cuisine that came from its rustic tradition . Furthermore, its version prepared with lamb is instead called Shepherd’s Pie . This meat pie is covered with mashed potatoes and, although the recipe has numerous variations, at the base we always see minced red meat cooked in a sauce with onions, carrots and celery.

Furthermore, before cooking in the oven , cheese is added on top , thus creating a further layer. The term was highlighted for the first time in 1791 , in the diaries of Parson Woodforde, while shepherd’s pie in 1854, however indicating a dish of Scottish cuisine with pastry filled with meat and potatoes. The fish variant of this English food, however, is called fish pie and includes seafood, fish and always a top layer of mashed potatoes.

Shepherd's pie rustica
Shepherd’s pie rustica

10. Mince Pie

Finally, what dessert do we eat in England to conclude our journey through traditional English cuisine in the best possible way? Among the most loved desserts, especially consumed during New Year’s Eve or the Christmas period , don’t miss the mince pie. This filled pie , usually about 7cm in size, has a pastry or shortcrust pastry casing , with a fruit filling called fruitmince . among the ingredients we can find dried fruit, such as candied orange peels, spices, especially cinnamon, almonds and liqueur, such as rum.

The cake is cooked in the oven, topping it with icing sugar before bringing it to the table. According to popular Christmas tales , mince pies are Santa Claus ‘s favorite English food and it is for this reason that children love them, leaving them on the fireplace with a glass of sherry on Christmas Eve. Furthermore, the tradition of English cuisine also dictates that when preparing the dough for these tarts you must only knead clockwise . In fact, by kneading counterclockwise you attract bad luck for the entire following year. Mince pies are also mentioned by Jane Austen in Pride and Prejudice .

mince pies
Christmas Mince Pies

Visit England along the Ways of Taste

Gone are our tips on cuisine and what you eat in England, with the typical English foods you absolutely must try during your trip. As we have seen, the English love pies , during our trip we can find any sweet and savory variety. Another much loved home cooking dish is the stir fry , which came from Chinese cuisine, it is vegetables sautéed with meat and often soy sauce, accompanied by rice. Furthermore, during your trip there will certainly be no shortage of sandwiches to snack on: an institution among English foods and a true passion in Leeds . Also, don’t forget to respect the tradition of 5pm tea . to have a snack. Finally, among the most popular drinks we find beer, artisanal gin and cider.

If our article What to Eat in England has awakened your appetite, it’s the perfect time to think about a trip to England . A fantastic experience among wonderful landscapes, culture and cuisine is waiting for you.

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