Good Food Blog
Eat like the English?Posted at 12:02PM, 11 November 2011 by Roxanne Fisher - Writer/Sub-editor, bbcgoodfood.com
When I think of English cuisine, traditional battered fish & chips , crumbly Cornish pasties and deep-filled apple pies immediately spring to mind. Therefore the recent headlines suggesting we can improve our health by 'eating like the English' came as a bit of a surprise.
Sadly, pastry hasn't suddenly become virtuous and deep-fried is still off-limits to the health conscious. Instead, research funded by the British Heart Foundation has found death rates for heart disease and cancer are higher in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as a result of a diet higher in saturated fats and salt than their English neighbours who, the research tells us, enjoy a more varied diet that's richer in fruit and veg.
Although the headlines imply otherwise, we don't need to forgo traditional British fare to be healthy
Although the headlines imply otherwise, we don't need to forgo traditional British fare to be healthy - we just need to make sensible choices and include a little more green and a little less grease on our plates. With this in mind I delved into our troves of traditional favourites, suggesting a few lighter alternatives where desired...
Eat like the Irish:
Soda bread Be sure to use a recipe that includes wholemeal flour to get some good grains inside you:
Lamb stew Use less lamb and more veg in your traditional stew to see you on your way to five-a-day:
Champ Forgo the double cream and full-fat milk and make this classic better for you:
Eat like the Scottish:
Fish o'leekie Swap the traditional fowl for fish in this low-fat supper:
Healthy oats Start the day the super healthy way with a big bowl of porridge using wholesome Scottish oats:
Cranachan A healthier version of the traditional recipe, make this pud really nourishing by adding more of your favourite fruits and use fat-free Greek yogurt and fromage frais in place of half the measurement of whipping cream:
Eat like the Welsh:
Welsh cakes Low in salt and sat fats - reach for these lovely cakes when you want a guilt-free treat:
Glamorgan sausages If you can't resist this Welsh favourite, enjoy in bite-sized pieces made with reduced fat cheese:
Bacheldre Welsh clay-pot bread A hearty, wholemeal bread packed with good grains and irresistible straight from the oven:
Everything should be enjoyed in moderation of course and even the guiltier classics taste great every once in a while. Take a peek at our British collection and let us know your favourites.