Iconic foods from the United Kingdom you need to try

These classic foods have been feeding people for centuries, but have you tried them? 

Every destination prides itself on food that is unqiue to their culture and heritage, and the UK can certainname a few. While many of us can say they've tried British food, there are some lesser known delicacies that may have gone under the radar on your travels - and we're not talking about pea mash. We've rounded up some of the lesser-known, but equally as delicious foods from the UK you need to try.

Haggis, neeps and tatties

Yes, haggis may be well-known but not many have actually tasted it - probably due to the unconventional ingredients. However, perhaps with the accompaniment of neeps and tatties this Scottish dish will lure in new audiences. Looking past the name, neeps and tatties are essentially swede (rutabaga) and potato roasted and cut up into crunchy, hot chunks to contrast with the spice of the haggis. Delicious!

Eccles cakes


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These pastries have a big history, dating back to the 17th century in England. They're named after the town in Greater Manchester and are the perfect tea time accessory. Small and round, their flaky exterior is rolled in sugar to meet with a sweet filling of currants. Easily made in 15 minutes, these dainty cakes should be with your next cup of tea.



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While this dish is not entirely British, it's been a firm favourite since the Victorian era. It's said to have been brought back from English colonels inspiring the Anglo/Indian cuisine. A  mixture of curry, rice, eggs and smoked fish, this flavoursome dish is commonly a breakfast meal but can also be enjoyed for a light lunch. 

Toad in the Hole

Toad in the Hole or 'Sausage Toad' is less scary than you think. A Scottish and English dish, this hearty meal consists of sausages in Yorkshire pudding batter served with vegetables. It was first created in the 1700s as a means to use meat sparingly in poor households, but later coined the name for its resemblance to a toad poking out of a hole (the batter). We'll let that one slide. 

Welsh cawl


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As the name suggests, this dish hails from Wales and essentially is a meat and vegetable broth. Recipes for this soup date back to the 14th century, as its staple ingredients of swede, carrot, potatoes and meat were widely available. Known to help aid in recovery of colds and flus, this tasty broth is full of vitamins and nutrients, perfect for winter temperatures. 

Bara Brith Bread


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Directly translated as "speckled bread", this delicious sweet treat is a Welsh fruit loaf made of yeast, dried fruits, mixed spices and is traditionally flavoured with tea. It's been an afternoon tea staple in Wales since the 1800s, and is best served sliced with a good spread of butter. 

Cullen skink


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Hailing from the northeast coast of Scotland, this hearty soup has been helping locals get through the winter for generations. Most commonly enjoyed in the fishing town of Cullen in Moray, the recipe was originally created for the fisherman who delighted in the soup's rich, thick consistency in the cold temperatures. Starchy, creamy and totally delicious, the soup consists of smoked haddock, potatoes and onions, or finnan handie if made from the traditional recipe.  

Lancashire hotpot


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An English staple, the Lancashire hotpot has been feeding households for centuries. Originating from the North West of England, this meaty stew is a wonderful winter warmer and feeds the whole family with just a few ingredients. The stew consists of a lamb and onion base, topped with sliced potatoes and is then baked in the oven. 

Bubble and squeak


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While this dish emerges sparingly in Australia, this fried breakfast meal is a UK classic. Essentially, it's a mash up of last night's leftover veggies - traditionally potato, cabbage, but brussel sprouts and peas are also a common inclusion. Once combined, the veggies are fried and made into a crunchy, hearty and warm breakfast. Yum!

Stream or watch James Martin's Great British Adventure, weeknights, 6.30pm EST on Lifestyle FOOD. 

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