Traditional English Food: Fish and Chips
Fish and chips is one of the most famous English food. It consists of fried battered fish and hot potato chips. This famous dish was first brought to England by Jews. By the 19th century, it had become a stock meal among the working classes in England. Fish and chips remained popular and common even during the world wars. One of the fish-and-chips shops had even earned a place in the Guinness Book of Records for its incredibly high sales in a single day in 1952.
Fish and chips is a hot dish of English origin consisting of fried battered fish and hot potato chips. It is a common take-away food and an early example of culinary fusion. Fish and chips first appeared in the 1860s; by 1910 there were more than 25,000 fish and chip shops across the UK, and by the 1930s there were over 35,000.
Fried fish first brought to England in large quantities by Jews is considered to be the model for the fish element of the dish. Originally, Jews settling in England in the 17th century would have prepared fried fish coated in a flour. Battered fish is first coated in flour then dipped into a batter consisting of flour mixed with liquid, usually water but sometimes beer. Some newer modifications to the recipe may have cornflour added, and instead of beer sometimes soda water is added. In 1860, the first fish and chip shop was opened in London and sold “fish fried in the Jewish fashion”.
Fish and chips became a stock meal among the working classes in England during the second half of the 19th century. Deep-fried chips (slices or pieces of potato) as a dish may have first appeared in England in about the same period.
The modern fish-and-chip shop originated in the United Kingdom, although outlets selling fried food occurred commonly throughout Europe. Early fish-and-chip shops had only very basic facilities. The fish-and-chip shop later evolved into a fairly standard format, with the food served, in paper wrappings, to queuing customers, over a counter in front of the fryers. By 1910, there were more than 25,000 fish and chip shops across the country, and in the 1920s there were more than 35,000 shops.
Fun Facts about Fish and chips:
- According to Professor John Walton, author of Fish and Chips and the British Working Class, the British government made safeguarding supplies of fish and chips during World War I a priority.
- In 1928, Harry Ramsden opened his fish and chip shop in Guiseley, West Yorkshire. On a single day in 1952, the shop served 10,000 portions of fish and chips, earning a place in the Guinness Book Of Records.
- During World War II, fish and chips remained one of the few foods in the United Kingdom not subject to rationing. Prime Minister Winston Churchill referred to the combination of fish and chips as “the good companions”.
- British fish and chips were originally served in a wrapping of old newspapers but this practice has now largely ceased, with plain paper, cardboard, or plastic being used instead.
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Hi guys! I’m Yixuan. 2018 is coming in two days’ time! Have you considered what to eat on New Years’ Eve for family reunion dinner? You may want to try the one I’m going to introduce today. It is one of the most famous dishes plus the most common take-away food around the world, which is, that’s right, fish and chips! Fish and chips is one of the most famous English food. It consists of fried battered fish and hot potato chips. In the article for today, the author briefly introduces the origin and the history of this dish in the first part. In the rest of the passage, some fun facts about fish&chips are listed as well to help you better understand the development of this dish over the years. For example, in 1952, one of the fish&chips shop had earned a place in the Guiness Book of Records for its incredibly high sales in a single day! Isn’t that amazing? So my question for today is, besides fish&chips, do you know any other traditional food which has strived over centuries and still attract numerous foodies around the world? It will be even better if you can share the stories behind the dish!