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What exactly is British food?

People are often shocked when they come to London and find a variety of different cuisine from all over the globe. I’m often asked about what British food actually is! What does it entail and where can we find it? Here’s a list of common British food and where to sample them.


1. Gravy
Brits love gravy! They douse it over their hot dinners and it is a staple in most households. Gravy is a reduction of meat juices thickened up with flour or corn-starch. It is traditionally served in a jug and placed on the dinner table. It tends to be a rich sauce so people sparingly pour it onto their food. It’s worth a try and you can find good gravy being served in tons of places across London. Check out www.visitlondon.com to find a list of restaurants and pubs known for their good grub.


2. Yorkshire Pudding
This is an oblong shaped pudding made from flour, water and eggs. It’s hardly ever seasoned in my experience but the idea is to let the gravy do the talking. It is served as part of a main course, usually with beef, lamb or chicken. It can be dense or fluffy, depending on the chef but it usually tastes best alongside a roast dinner. If you like the sound of it, pop down to your local pub on a Sunday. They’re sure to have it!


3. Sticky toffee pudding
This is a rich, gooey desert oozing with toffee goodness. A very popular treat for most, it is definitely a dinner party staple. It’s made from pitted dates, butter, flour, sugar and eggs then baked for about 40 minutes to achieve the melt-in-your-mouth texture Brits love. Traditionally it’s served with cream or butterscotch sauce, but it can also be eaten with vanilla ice-cream (my preferred choice!) Check out www.timeout.co.uk to find out more about your local British pudding spot.


4. Trifle
I’m not sure how British this is anymore as it’s associated with nannies and great aunts. It used to be a very popular after tea treat made up of layers. It is traditionally assembled and served in a curved glass or bowl, with a vanilla sponge at the bottom, then flavoured jelly (usually strawberry), chopped fruit pressed against the side of the glass, vanilla custard and then it’s topped with cream. It’s usually garnished with chopped fruit but there are so many modern (and tastier) variations of the dish so you’ll find some topped with chopped nuts or chocolate (yum!). You can easily pop into your local supermarket and grab a trifle but I’d suggest popping to a posh store like Waitrose as theirs is top notch.

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