Related Videos

Top 10 British Foods That Confuse the Rest of the World

VO: Richard Bush WRITTEN BY: Marc Turner
These dishes really do give food for thought. Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 British Foods That Confuse the Rest of the World. For this list we’re looking at British foods that baffle foreign visitors, either because their names are misleading, or because their ingredients are so unusual it’s a wonder anyone would choose to eat them. Special thanks to our user WordToTheWes for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
Share
WatchMojo

You must register to a corporate account to download this video. Please login

Transcript

Top 10 British Foods That Confuse the Rest of the World


These dishes really do give food for thought. Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 British Foods That Confuse the Rest of the World.

For this list we’re looking at British foods that baffle foreign visitors, either because their names are misleading, or because their ingredients are so unusual it’s a wonder anyone would choose to eat them.

#10: Scotch Eggs


This popular British snack consists of a hard-boiled egg enclosed in sausage meat and breadcrumbs. London’s “Fortnum & Mason” department store supposedly invented them in 1738, although other sources claim they originated in Yorkshire. The earliest recipe for Scotch eggs – at least in print – dates back to 1809, which recommended they be served hot with gravy – though they can equally be eaten cold as a picnic food. The taste of Scotch eggs can vary depending on where you eat them as well, with different UK regions using their own local sausages in the dish.

#9: Deep-fried Mars Bars


You’ll find many unusual foods on a British chip-shop menu, from curry sauce to mushy peas. But surely none is stranger than a deep-fried Mars bar. These calorie-laden snacks are made by dipping a chilled Mars bar into the batter normally used for frying fish – because chocolate isn’t fattening enough on its own, right? The snack was apparently invented as a novelty item in the Haven Chip Bar in Scotland before growing in popularity. What will people think of frying next? Pizza? Oh no wait, they’ve already done that.

#8: Black Pudding


It might have “pudding” in the name, but most people would be disappointed if they got served this for dessert. This sausage is typically made from a mixture of congealed pigs’ blood, lard and oatmeal, and is usually eaten fried on toast or as part of a full-English breakfast. Lemon cheesecake, it is not. Black pudding is most likely to have originated from times of hardship, when butchers would use every last part of an animal for food. And whilst it might not be to everyone’s taste, it was acclaimed as a superfood in 2016.

#7: Mince Pies


Originally these shortcrust pastry pies were made with real mincemeat, but nowadays the filling is a mixture of dried fruit, peel, and a type of animal fat called suet. Eaten at Christmas, the pies are commonly spiced with cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to represent the gifts presented to Jesus by the three Wise Men. Visitors to the UK are often put off by this dessert’s name, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing – is it? It just means there are more left for the rest of us.

#6: Bubble and Squeak


This traditionally British dish is typically made from the leftovers of the equally traditional Sunday roast. Potatoes and cabbage are its core ingredients, but other vegetables can be added, such as carrots and Brussels sprouts – the possibilities are pretty much endless, here. The potatoes are mashed into the cooked cabbage, then fried in a pan and eaten hot. The name ‘bubble and squeak’ is said to come from the sound the ingredients make while they are cooking in the pan – and not from the effect they have on the diner’s stomach when they reach it.

#5: Toad in the Hole


Yorkshire pudding – a humble batter made from eggs, flour and milk or water – was voted the top British regional dish in 2016, beating Cornish pasties, and scones and cream. But Toad in the Hole only increases the delicious factor by adding sausages to the dish. As for the origins of its admittedly pretty leftfield name, some people suggested that frogs were once included in the dish, and others that the finished meal looks a bit like toads submerged in mud. And honestly, what could be more appetising than that?

#4: Steak and Kidney Pie


Steak in a pie? Sounds great. The kidneys, though, take a bit more explaining. Of course, offal is hardly unique to Britain. When you consider, though, that the function of an animal’s kidney is to produce urine, it makes it particularly hard to see why anyone would spoil a steak pie by adding them into it. In Victorian times, oysters were used instead to bulk out the pie, but when shellfish prices rose, kidneys took their place. And, surprisingly, the pies are still hugely popular in Britain, not least on football stadium terraces.

#3: Spotted Dick


Britain has more than its fair share of unusual desserts, with bread-and-butter pudding providing a particularly perfect example. But nothing raises eyebrows quite like the sweet suet pudding known as spotted dick. The “spotted” part of the name comes from the dried fruits added to the dish, but the “dick” part is more of a mystery, and it is hard to think of a more off-putting name for an after-dinner treat. Owing to this, in 2018, the dessert was reportedly renamed “Spotted Richard” in the Houses of Commons’ restaurant to spare diners’ blushes.

#2: Haggis


The national dish of Scotland, this savoury pudding is made from the minced heart, liver and lungs of a sheep, together with oatmeal and suet. It used to be boiled in the sheep’s own stomach, but nowadays it is usually cooked in an artificial casing instead. It may look like something created for a dare, yet fans of the dish compare its taste to peppery meatloaf. Americans in particular seem confused by this food, with a 2003 survey suggesting a third of Scotland’s US visitors thought haggis was a kind of animal.

#1: Beans on Toast


This classic dish is arguably the nation’s favourite, with Brits getting through a staggering two million tins of beans every single day. Baked beans are also often eaten as part of a fry-up or on jacket potatoes, but in the hearts of the Great British public, nothing beats simply adding them to toast. Or, if you are feeling particularly adventurous, you could always grate a little cheese on top. Considering the meal’s simplicity, it is fair to say that most non-Brits struggle to understand the reason for its immeasurable popularity.
Comments

Sign in to access this feature

Related Blogs