English & Scottish
It has to be said: over the years, the cuisine of the British Isles has gotten a bad rap. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a cuisine more maligned across the globe: British food has been the butt of jokes, teasing, and even revulsion over the years. But is this reputation truly deserved? Actually, we don’t think so, and to prove it, we’ve assembled our favorite English and Scottish recipes together for your perusal. Read on!
Modern British food is more than just the native cuisine of the British Isles, an admittedly cold and rainy archipelago in northwest Europe and perhaps not the most fertile ground for the cultivation of spices and flavors in general. However, there are some gems to be found amongst all the haggis and boiled meat: fish and chips is one of the most popular indigenous foods of the British Isles, consisting of fried fish served with fried potatoes, a true celebration of grease in all of its forms. But owing to the UK’s famous colonial history, British cuisine has also been influenced by many different cuisines around the world, most notably that of South Asia—the Indian subcontinent, colonized by the British Empire for hundreds of years. Chicken Tikka is a famous British-Indian dish, a brightly colored chicken and cream curry exceptionally popular to get at late night takeaway shops.
Another culinary area that the British excel at is the creation of all kinds of foods to eat along with tea. The English teatime is a beloved traditional meal in England and the rest of the British Isles. Indeed, the sandwich itself was invented by a British man, the Earl of Sandwich, when he tried to eat and play cards at the same time. Tea is typically served along time finger food like small sandwiches, pastries, and other bite-sized items. Cakes and pastries, therefore, are a British specialty. We’ve assembled our favorite English and Scottish recipes here.
Banana banoffee pie recipe
This classic English dessert pie most resembles a fruit pudding or custard, though it’s actually a toffee—the name is a portmanteau of the words “banana” and “toffee.” In any case, in this banana banoffee pie recipe, the eggy custard, thick with banana slices, is topped with delicious meringue and baked until just brown on top. Let it cool down a little bit, and this is the perfect decadent dessert for your next tea time. Only one question: do the bananas make this count as a serving of fruit?
Classic strawberry shortcake with whipped cream recipe
Is there a more classic and humble dessert than a strawberry shortcake? Shortcake is a uniquely British dessert, resembling a lightly sweetened scone or biscuit with a delicious flaky texture. This is paired with fresh, ripe strawberries and—and this is an important part—homemade whipped cream. Seriously, the homemade whipped cream is everything for this dish. Store bought whipped cream is simply too sweet, too fluffy, and not fatty enough—inferior and unworthy in all regards. Instead, beat your whipped cream into stiff peaks with just a touch of powdered sugar (don’t worry, you can add more later). Stack up your three ingredients attractively, making sure to allow the macerated juice from the strawberries to soak into the thirsty shortbread. Strawberry shortcake is the ultimate teatime dessert!
English classic Christmas pudding
Important information: when English people say pudding, they can mean a lot of different things. While for Americans, the word pudding definitely implies dessert, in English it can be a bit more ambiguous. After all, black pudding is their word for what most Americans would call a blood sausage (if they called it anything at all). But never fear—this pudding is sweet! Christmas pudding is a bit like a fruitcake—studded with dried fruits like raisins, prunes, and apricots, and virtually saturated with alcohol, this cake is something else. Seriously, check the recipe: this is an alcoholic cake, calling for brandy, wine, and beer along with the other ingredients. But somehow, when you put it all together, something magical happens: the pudding soaks up all the sweet, syrupy alcohol, and you’re left with a thick, sweet, and decadent Christmas pudding. Try our Christmas pudding recipe this holiday season for a special treat.
Ginger parkin cake recipe
A spicy teatime treat traditional to Yorkshire, a region of England, this ginger parkin cake is prepared with oatmeal and black treacle, a type of unrefined sugar syrup similar to molasses with a dark, musty flavor. Sugary and with a slight alcoholic tang, it adds a perfect dark sweetness to this teatime favorite. This cake is rich, sweet, and just a touch spicy thanks to the ginger: a perfect complement to a nice cup of tea or coffee at the end of a satisfying meal. Try out our English ginger parkin cake recipe the next time you’re entertaining guests!