The Hidden Treats in British Fish and Chip Shops

If you made a list of iconic British foods, fish and chips would surely be at the top. A deep-fried white fish, typically cod or haddock, accompanied by chunky chips and often some mushy peas is a traditional seaside treat. That is not all that’s available in our much-loved chip shops though – here are some lesser known items you could try on your next trip to the UK!

A Battered Sausage

Cooked Sausage

First off, we have probably the most common alternative to fish – a battered sausage. What type of sausage you may ask? Pork? Chicken? Pidgeon? Who knows! Although the origin of the mystery meat within the same batter as you would find on a chip shop fish may never be truly known, if you can let that curiosity go you will find a very comforting, filling snack.

Scraps

Mother and Child Preparing Crepes

Speaking of the batter which surrounds the fish, any excess batter is put to good use. When your dish is being prepared you may well be asked ‘Would you like scraps?’. If you answer yes, a scoop of small pieces of batter will be added to your plate or takeaway box (actually, fish and chips are very frequently served wrapped in newspaper pages!) Free of charge.

Curry Sauce

Person Holding Chopsticks and White Ceramic Bowl

Despite not often being mentioned when I hear people from abroad discussing fish and chips, curry sauce is an extremely popular condiment to enhance the flavor of your meal! Chip shop curry sauce has its own distinct flavor and texture, very different from, for example, an Indian curry sauce. In fact, many companies have tried to replicate the taste and you will find sauces marketed as real chip shop curry sauce in many British supermarkets. This is my personal favorite thing to pour over my fish and chips! It’s also great for dipping your battered sausage in!

To Chip Butty

Fries on Brown Table

Chips and bread. A chip butty (a regional term for a sandwich). So simple, yet so satisfying. Take some deep-fried fatty chips, add plenty of butter to some white bread and stick as many of the chips as you can inside and there you have it – one of the dirty secrets of British cuisine! A healthy dollop or two of tomato ketchup is usually appreciated to add a little flavor to the fat and carbs.

Deep-fried Mars Bar

Brown Chocolate Bar on Multicolored Surface

Finally, a heart-busting treat from north of the border. The Scots are a bit more experimental with deep-frying than their English counterparts, and a Mars bar deep-fried in batter is a sickly but quite popular treat. In fact, many chip shops in Scotland will allow you to take any chocolate bar to them and they’ll deep-fry it in batter for you, for a small price.

 

We hope you enjoyed learning a bit more about British fish and chip shops. Would you like to try any of these delicacies? Do some of them sound terrible to you? Let us know in the comments!

5 First Impressions of Italy from a Recent British Arrival

[Qui in italiano]

Moving to Milan at the start of January, I’ve had some time to get some first impressions of this wonderful city. Here is what an Englishman thinks of his first month in Milan.

1. The Food

With hidden gems around every corner, Milan is packed full of flavorful treats. The city’s much-loved specialties such as ossobuco, cotoletta or risotto are essential for any newcomer to try. Despite really liking these dishes, my favourite thing about Milan is being able to walk into any small café I choose and receive fantastic food and true Italian coffee. I had the best ice cream of my life from Orsi Gelateria, near Scrambled Eggs. You can find incredible bargains everywhere!

Assorted Vegetables and Spices on Wood Surface

 

2. The People

Last but not least, the people! Full of warm, welcoming people who are keen to help you feel at home. Even though my Italian is still not very good, people make an effort to understand me and talk to me anyway. The only downside is getting on and off the metro – people are in such a rush here!

Three Persons Sitting on the Stairs Talking With Each Other

3.The Architecture

From the breath-taking Duomo to the charming back alleys, a simple stroll around Milan is packed full with interesting sights. My favourite thing to do on the weekends is to pick a new area and then go and explore, without planning a route.

Grayscale Photography of Cathedral

4. The Weather

Compared to the frigid winters in the north of England, January and February have been very pleasant for me. In spite of it being humid at times here in Milan, the mild winter makes wandering around the city much more pleasurable. Even the fog has its charm!

Photography of Yellow Hibiscus Under Sunlight

5.The Art

The Last Supper really is a one-of-a-kind. It’s a must-see for any visitor. In London, all museums and art galleries are free to enter. At first, that makes the prices to go in here seem like a rip-off! However, once you start visiting them you quickly realise that they are worth it! There is also a great scheme where entry to most museums is free on the first Sunday of every month. Although it could be a bit spooky after dark, the Monumental Cemetery also has some truly artistic works to see.

Children Multicolored Hand Paint

5 UK Hidden Gems to Explore

[Italiano qui]

London, London, London. Such a magnificent, vibrant city which attracts tourists from all over the world. But what lies beyond the sprawling capital? Here are some of our favourite hidden gems, scattered across the UK.

1. Mother Shipton’s Cave

In the picturesque town of Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, lies the oldest paid-entrance attraction in the whole of the UK. It opened way back in 1630.  There are many legends surrounding Mother Shipton herself. She was born in the area, is rumoured to have lived in the cave, and is described as a soothsayer or even sometimes as a witch! She made predictions about the future which at times amazed and at times terrified the locals! There is a petrifying well near the cave, which over time turns objects to stone. You can see shoes, masks and even teddy bears hanging from the well, now petrified forever. It is well worth a visit if you are exploring the north of England.

Image result for mother shiptons cave

 

 

2. The Minack Theatre

In the often sunny (compared to the rest of England!) county of Cornwall, a stunning open-air theatre opens up to the public from May to September, looking out across the stunning coastline. The first show, a production of The Tempest, was put on in 1932 and the Minack Theatre has appeared in listings of the worlds most spectacular theatres.  What better way to take in some true English theatre?

 

 

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/16/Minack_Theatre.jpg/1024px-Minack_Theatre.jpg

 

 

3. Whitby Abbey and Goth Weekend

Whitby Abbey is a striking 7th century monastery which is now in partial ruin. It inspired Bram Stoker to write his universally known 1897 novel Dracula and the seaside town is now home to one of the largest goth festivals in Europe, which contributes over £1,000,000 to the local economy. If you like the spooky side of life or even just want a great place to see very old English architecture and try some of the best fish and chips in the country, drop by on your next visit to the UK!

Whitby Abbey 060615.jpg

 

 

4. Kilchurn Castle

What do you think of when you picture Scotland? Characterful castles, clear lakes and breathtaking scenery? Well you will find them all here in Argyll and Bute in western Scotland. The castle itself has a fascinating story, from the people who have passed through its walls to the many challenges the walls themselves have faced, such as being struck by lightning in the 18th century. This is a great place to get away from it all soak in that rich Scottish history and those spectacular sights. 

Image result for kilchurn castle

 

 

5. Blackpool Tower

At the time of completion (1894) the tallest structure in the British Empire, Blackpool tower is well-known to natives but is not a household name abroad. The 158 metres tall structure today comprises a circus, a prestigious ballroom and roof gardens. On the top floor a viewing platform gives incredible views of the sea and the surroundings, and a glass floor for people who aren’t afraid of heights! Blackpool itself is packed with things to do such as its nightlife, theme park, water park, zoo and many slot machines. It is a popular destination for both family holidays and for people seeking a wild party time. If you’d like to experience the little Las Vegas of the UK, be sure to drop by!

Blackpool Tower 05082017 (cropped).jpg

Thank you for reading our collection of hidden gems. Have you ever been to one of these places? Which would you most like to visit? Let us know!