Beyond Baked Beans on Toast: 9 British Foods Worth Traveling For
When we think of British food, what comes to mind is hearty fare, some of which have odd names. This hearty fare has most heart in the motherland. Here are 9 British foods you need to travel to the United Kingdom for.
Not all the foods on this list are individual dishes — take, for example, high tea and Sunday roast, both of which include many different foods. We included them anyway, because these ceremonial experiences are so British (and delicious) that no traveler crossing the Atlantic should leave the United Kingdom without sitting down for tea or roast.
While London has much to offer, there are so many other places to visit in the United Kingdom, from Wales and Scotland to the charming Lake District and the university towns of Oxford and Cambridge. In fact, there is no way you can eat a Cornish pasty outside Cornwall; otherwise, it’s not a Cornish pasty. We’re not saying that for effect — the food enjoys PGI status, meaning the EU states that pasties made outside Cornwall cannot call themselves Cornish pasties.
Many of Europe’s best restaurants are in the United Kingdom, and even if you can’t score a reservation at one of them, there’s plenty of everyman food to be enjoyed. While London may not come cheap in terms of food, other cities in the U.K. are far more reasonable.
While afternoon tea is not exactly a food, it's a food experience nobody should miss in England. Order a strong black tea (don't forget to add milk and sugar) and eat small, two- or three-bite sandwiches (we like watercress) with scones and clotted cream. For a truly regal experience, order a Victoria Cake — a layered sponge cake with a jam filling — for dessert. Go big or go home with your afternoon tea at London's Fortnum & Mason, which sells all sorts of high tea kitsch to take home, or enjoy this meal in a beautiful, sunlit location in Kensington Gardens at The Orangery.
Shutterstock / Paul Cowan
Beef Wellington is a puff-pastry-wrapped steak that’s been coated in pâté and duxelles (buttery mushroom paste). You can order one individually, or get a whole tenderloin that you can share family-style. Decadent? You bet. Go big or go home. Eat this dish at the Sign of the Don, a bistro in an ancient brick wine vault in London.