S. Worthen (owlfish) wrote,
S. Worthen

Traditional English Puddings

Despite some worry in the food blogging world that traditional English desserts are dying out, there are some indications to the contrary. The picnic at Henley featured a Bakewell Tart competition in honor of its increasing rarity, but there's some hope yet for this rather dry fruity tart. They're an in-demand staple at traditional English teas around the capital, and traditional English teas are, I read, all the rage. If you want to have afternoon tea at Fornum & Masons or the Ritz, you'll need book four to six weeks in advance at the moment!*

Today, a new friend from the Leeds conference met up with me at the British Library for a visit to Beowulf - and for lunch. Top of her agenda was a traditional pub lunch culminating in something absolutely traditional, like treacle tart or spotted dick. If she'd been up for some extra travelling, I'd've gambled on St. John's or Smith of Smithfields off of the top of my head as places likely to go the traditional route for sweets. As was, we did a tour of pub menus from King's Cross to Tottenham Court Road, eventually giving up in favor of actually having lunch at all.

I realized, in other words, that I have no idea where I'd need to go to have a guaranteed chance at a treacle tart, spotted dick, or, for that matter, bakewell tart - unless I made them myself or booked a table for tea, ideally weeks in advance. So what's the answer, Traditional Pudding Eaters of London? And was the King's Cross area indeed an entirely lost cause when it came to finding one?

* Some of you have suggested resuming my cream tea tour here in London. Not only would I have to plan way ahead to do it - the project would be endless here! Still, it's sometimes tempting...
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