English Cookery and Meals

With the exception of breakfast meals in England are much the same as in other countries. The usual meals in Great Britain are breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner. The English are very fastidious about their meals and keep to their meal times strictly. Breakfast time is between 7 and 9 a. m. Many people like to begin it with porridge. English people eat porridge with milk or cream and sugar, but the Scots — and Scotland is the home of porridge — never put sugar in it. Then comes bacon and eggs, marmalade with toast and tea or coffee. For a change you can have a boiled egg, cold ham or perhaps fish. The two substantial meals of the day, lunch and dinner, are more or less the same. Lunch is usually taken at one o’clock. Many people, who go out to work, find it difficult to come home for lunch and go to a cafe or a restaurant, but they never miss a meal. Lunch is a big meal — meat or fish, potatoes and salad, puddings or fruit are quite usual for it. In the afternoon, about four o’clock, the English have a cup of tea and a cake, or a slice or two of bread and butter. Tea is very popular with the English; it may be called their national drink. The English like it strong and fresh made. Tea must be brewed as follows: one teaspoon for each person and one for the pot. They drink it with or without sugar, but almost always with milk. It is important to pour tea into milk, and not vice versa. Their “high tea” at 5 o’clock is very famous. Tea is accompanied by ham, tomatoes and salad, bread and butter, fruit and cakes. Dinnertime is generally about half past seven or later. In some houses dinner is the biggest meal of the day. They begin with soup, followed by fish, roast chicken, potatoes and vegetables, fruit and coffee. But in great many English homes the midday meal is the chief one of the day, and in the evening they only have light meal, for example, bread and cheese and a cup of coffee or cocoa and fruit.