Pie, Mash & Jellied Eels – A True Cockney Dinner

Since launching our rhyming slang contest on Tuesday, we seem to have stuck with the cockney theme. We always share a recipe or food feature towards the end of the week, so today’s offering is a proper plate of East London grub… and trust us, you’re in for a treat!

The streets of the traditionally working-class areas of east and south London used to be packed with pie and mash shops, of which sadly only a few still remain. Doing what they say on the tin, these establishments have served up minced beef and onion pies with mashed potatoes since the 1800’s.

But the item on the menu which catches most people’s eye, and is certainly the most peculiar, is jellied eels. Despite many people’s disbelief, they are pretty self-explanatory: eels in jelly.

The most commonly found, and thus cheapest, fish in the Thames, they were set in gelatine to draw out the toxicity of the polluted river. The liquid they are cooked in is mixed with parsley into a sauce (or ‘liquor) which is poured over the pie and mash. Delicious!

Our cockney rhyming slang contest is running until next Tuesday. Let us know your favorite term (either made up or real) and the best will win tea and scones for two and a tin of Rosie Lee tea to take home. Wishing you the best of Donald Duck (luck)!

Apples and pears…. stairs!