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The following information is based mostly on notes made during a short trip to the UK in 2005. These are just our food experiences and you may have a totally different experience depending on your budget, where you travel and where you eat.

Fish and Chips
Fish & Chips

English food is very fatty and salty, with loads of pastry products and warmimg winter foods. They call breakfast breakfast, the midday meal 'dinner', and the evening meal 'tea' - even though the main drink in England is tea! Breakfast time is usually between 7-9am  and may consist of a typical English breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausages, fried bread, mushrooms, baked beans with a cup of coffee/tea, however it is very common to just have cereal, toast, juice and coffee. Lunch is between 12 noon-2pm, which usually consists of a snack meal of a sandwich, soup, crisps, fruit and a drink. Dinner is usually between 6 - 8pm and is mainly based around meat, potatoes and two vegetables. It is also a tradition to have a Roast dinner at lunch time on a Sunday, however this is a fading tradition.

Traditional Foods

Fish and chips - Cod is the main fish type used. The fish pieces are often pre-cooked and served on request as opposed to being cooked on request as in Australia!

Mushy peas - made from Marafat peas (large green peas), which are dried first, then soaked (in bicarb soda), cooked and mashed and eaten with fish and chips. Adds a sweet taste to this very salty dish.

Chip Butty - hot chips served in a tea cake (or bread roll).

making fudge in Cambridge
making fudge in Cambridge

Scraps - Left over bits of fried batter, just added to a serve of fish and chips for free

Cornish pasties - This meat and vegetable filled pastry parcel has origins a long way back. It was originally made for coal miners working in dusty and dirty surroundings and the outside wrap was inedible and only there to protect the filling from contamination. Eventually the wrap was made out of pastry. Found in all bakeries.
Another famous pie from this country is the steak and kidney pie.

Sunday roast - found in every pub! All types of meats, served with potato and a range of vegetables.

English Breakfast - A traditional breakfast which is still commonly consumed today, consisting of eggs, bacon, mushrooms, tomato, all fried, with baked beans and toast.


Ready to eat packaged foods are very common, especially in London. Most of the fruit and vegetables are packaged in bundles and wrapped in plastic, and you can often not buy loose pieces.


Fruit in Church
Fruit in a Church

Bread products

Ploughman's lunch

A selection of bread products and cold meats and cheeses with a little salad. For the hard working people.

Black Pudding
Black Pudding

Yorkshire Specialties

Devonshire tea

Scones served with jam and clotted cream (with texture between butter and cream), always taken with a cup of tea in the afternoon

Cakes, Biscuits and Puddings


Drewy drinking beer
Drewy drinking a beer


Fast Food

Take away food is also very popular, with a selection of Indian, Italian, Chinese, Greek, Thai on offer depending on your location.  There are also a number of sandwich outlets such as GREGS and SUBWAY.  And off course there is many classic English take away’s offering fish (battered) & chips.  Most of the multinational fast food outlets are also on offer including McDonalds, KFC, Pizza hut etc. An unusual menu item at McDonlads we saw was a McQuorn burger, a vegetarian burger made from an artificially made fungus.


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Old Comments

  • As a British desendant (my Dad was born in Leeds) and having had fish and chips and mussy peas wrapped in newspaper from the shop at the top of the street, just wondering where I can buy marafat peas as no-one here seems to know what they are. Thanks, Tom (Jan 2012)


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