We Brits know our stuff when it comes to cooking. We are the proud owners of the full English breakfast and the famous roast dinner. When we’re not busy munching our way through a bacon sandwich or a Yorkshire pudding, we are otherwise occupied with traditional British delights such as bangers and mash, toad in the hole or fish and chips.
Added to which, we are the country which gave the world Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsay and Delia Smith. Therefore, it is hardly surprising that our desserts are absolutely top-notch. Here are just a few of our favourite uniquely British desserts:
Strawberries and cream
Since Roger Federer beat Andy Murray in the Men’s Final, there has been a Wimbledon-shaped hole in our lives. Luckily, we can fill it with strawberries and cream – a suitably British dessert for the prestigious London-based Championships.
Another British dessert which consists of strawberries and cream, as well as meringue, is Eton Mess, which dates back to at least the 19th Century. It is a traditional feature of Eton College’s annual cricket game against Winchester College.
Famous not only for being a traditional British dessert, but also for being the cause of many a giggling fit among generations of schoolchildren, spotted di ck is a steamed suet pudding containing dried fruit such as currants.
‘Spotted’ refers to the dried fruit, while ‘di ck’ possibly comes from the German word for ‘thick’. The traditional accompaniment to this dessert is custard – traditional English custard, of course!
This distinctive yellow and pink sponge cake was apparently invented by the chefs of the British Royal household in 1884, to celebrate the marriage of Queen Victorian’s granddaughter to Louis of Battenberg.
Along with spotted di ck, jam roly-poly is considered one of the classic desserts of mid-20th Century British school dinners. Interestingly, it used to be nicknamed ‘dead man’s arm’ or ‘dead man’s leg’ because it was often steamed and served wrapped in an old shirt sleeve.
Sticky toffee pudding
Another modern British ‘classic’, sticky toffee pudding is a steamed dessert consisting of a moist sponge cake made with finely chopped dates or prunes, covered in a toffee sauce and served with ice cream or custard.