British food & drink On the Continent people have good food; in England people have good table manners. George Mikes Introduction Britain and good food are two things which are not commonly associated. - Why is food in Britain terrible? + British tastes are different from everybody else’s. (strange, unpleasant taste; little taste; overcooked ) + Most visitors don’t get the opportunity to sample home cooking. (usually food in institution: university canteen or eat out: in cheap restaurants and cafe’s) - Attitudes to food What are British people’s attitudes to food? It seems that Britain people simply don’t care enough to bother. * In the society + There’re no “restaurant culture” nor a “cafe society”. + People just want to eat up quickly and are not interested much in quality. Attitudes to food + Little effort is made to make the hamburgers tasty because nobody expects them to be. + The coffee is horrible not because British people prefer it that way but because they don’t go to a cafe for a delicious, slow cup of coffee-they go there because they need caffeine. * At home: - - Food and drink given little attention. The coffee often as bad as it is in the cafe. Meals tend to be eaten quickly and the table cleared. Parties and celebrations are not normally centered around food. - When the British do pay attention to food, it is most frequently not to appreciate it but to notice what they don’t like about it. (eggs infected with salmonella; “mad cow” disease). - The range of plants and animals which they will eat is rather narrow. British consider eating wild animals and domestic animals is exotic. Today the country’s supermarket shelves are full of the spices and sauces. What British people eat? - A fry-up is a phrase used informally for several items (eggs, bacon, sausage, tomatoes, mushrooms, bread) fried together. The British eat rather a lot of fried food. - Bread is not an accompaniment to every meal. They use flour for making pastry dishes. What British people eat? - Eggs are a basic part of most people’s diet. (fried, soft-boiled, hard-boiled). - Cold meats are not very popular. - The British are the world’s biggest consumers of sugarmore than 5 kilograms a person per year. They also love “sweets”. Eating out - Going to a restaurant is still a rare event for most British people. Regular restaurant going is confined mostly to the richest section of society. Being in an expensive restaurant sometimes seems to be more important than the food eaten in it. – snobbery. Eating out - Snobbery in the menus. All the dishes have non English names, most commonly French (more exotic and exciting). Going to a restaurant is a time to be adventurous.-few are actually British restaurants) - Eating places which serve British food: pubs, workman’s cafe, fish and chip shop. ** Workman’s cafe (pronounced “caff”’): - Used during the day, most typically by manual workers. - Also used by anybody else who wants a filling meal, likes the informal atmosphere and is not over-worried about cleanliness. - Offers mostly fried food of the “English breakfast” type. (sometimes jokingly called a “greasy spoon”). ** Fish and chip shop: - Used in the evening for “take-away” meals. Again, the fish is (deep) fried. When people eat what meals? 1- Breakfast: - full breakfast is a traditional cooked breakfast , comprising at its heart bacon and eggs, that is popular throughout the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom and other parts of the English speaking world. - A full breakfast with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausages, black pudding, mushrooms, baked beans, hash browns, and half a tomato While weekday breakfasts in Britain and Ireland often consist of a brief meal of cereal and/or toast, the fry-up is commonly eaten in a leisurely fashion on - Saturday or Sunday mornings. 2- Elevenses: is, conventionally, a cup of tea or coffee and some biscuits at around eleven o’clock. In fact, people drink tea or coffee whenever they feel like. 3- Lunch is typically at 1 o’clock (any shops which close for lunch close from one to two). 4- Supper: is the usual word for the evening meal among most people who don’t call it “tea”. 5 -Dinner: In the United Kingdom, dinner traditionally meant the main meal of the day. Because of differences in custom as to when this meal was taken, dinner might mean the evening meal (typically used by upper class people), or the midday meal (typically used by working class people, who describe their evening meal as tea). Alcohol The attitude to alcohol in Britain is ambivalent: It is accepted & welcomed as an integral part of British culture. Local pubs play an important role Drinking beer and spirits. - Alcohol The puritan tradition thinks that drinking is potentially dangerous therefore it should be restricted. - People can’t be served in pubs until the age of 18 and they aren’t even allowed inside one until they’re 14. - Beer is an important part of the lives of many people. - Pubs - The British pub (short for public house) is unique. (different character from bars or cafe in other countries, different from any other public place in Britain itself.) - The pub is the only indoor place where the average person can comfortably meet others, even strangers, and get into a prolonged conversation with them. (classless, noisy). Pubs - Special character: no waiter service, if you want something you have to go and ask for it at the bar. (comfortable and relaxed, informal, being in your own house). - Each pub has its own name, a sign hanging outside, always with old-fashioned associations. What people drink? Large amounts of hot drinks: tea, coffee, cocoa, squash (a sweetened fruit concentrate diluted with water), soft drink, water from the tap. - Wine (higher social classes, in expensive restaurants) Now, it is for everybody. - Beer is still the most popular alcoholic drink. (bitter, mild, lager beer) - Fish and chips - Fish and chips or fish 'n' chips, a popular take-away food with British origins, consists of deep-fried fish in batter or breadcrumbs with deep-fried potatoes.