Friday, 22 January 2010

Fish & chips

Fish and chips, photographed Norfolk, UKImage via Wikipedia
People often ask me what I miss about the UK, and a good podge out on steaming fish & chips is very high on my list. No plates or knives & forks - no table, not even in the house! Walking home on a cold night after a couple of pints in the pub. Enough salt to give my doctor a heart attack, and evaporating malt vinegar filling the air. Keep having to change hands because the newspaper wrapping is too hot...greasy fingers and just enough loose change for the last bus.

I am so hungry! OK, we can get "fish & chips" in some "English" or "Irish" pubs in Japan (Old Rock in Matsumoto for example) & I had some the weekend before last in Okayama. However, a cold plate, silver cutlery, a hint of salad, and a dollop of tartar sauce is not the same thing at all, and certainly not when you can count the chips and get bugger all change from Y1,000!

What is good fish & chips all about then? Well, apart from the obvious in the first paragraph, it involves things like responsible food sourcing, hygiene & staff training. Check out this article on Britain's best chippy.

Geographically there is an important point in the article too. Students of mine always come back from their three-day trip to 'England' (ie Harrods, Baker St & The British Museum) with complaints about the food. Of course it's rubbish - it's London. And if you went to a pub, the beer's flat and yugh as well. For a decent serving of fish and chips you have to go north, and the further north the better!


POLZEATH, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 10:  People qu...Image by Getty Images via Daylife
Lastly, how do you find a good chippy? Easy, look for the one with the longest queue. The waiting is worth it, the anticipation grows, your tummy rumbles...Enjoy!

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