fish and chips

Fish and Chips



soul fry/fried associated with
fresh amazing make sure
treat remind french fries
thin consider comforting
eatery portion take out (3)
cost prepare traditional
owner dish (2) ingredient
way grade (2) make/made/made
print found (2) survive (2)
batter sprinkle deep fried
wrap masses find/found/found (2)
ink transfer dominate
ban coat (2) working-class
afford stall (2) sell/sold/sold
cart celebrity buy/bought/bought
region success change hands
ton class (2) write/wrote/written
ration available wholesale
readily employ catch/caught/caught
coal explain employee
cod species federation
plaice quarter sell/sold/sold
end up haddock grow/grew/grown
island definitely unemployment
cuisine no longer upmarket
glad nostalgia meet/met/met
trip recycle take them back
posh plain (2) on the run
swank pillar (2) do/did/done






Many things were associated with Britain, but few are as popular as fish and chip. And this is London’s oldest surviving fish and chip shop, The Rock and Soul Place founded in 1871, which makes it almost as old as the dish itself.

Customer One: “Amazing really aren’t they?”

Customer Two: “I’ve had a hard week, so you treat yourself to fish and chips.”

Customer Three: “And when you look at chips in McDonald’s for example of Americans sort of french fries, where they’re thin whatever; they’re not fries. I wouldn’t eat those.”

Customer Four: “Reminds me of going to the seaside or being a little girl it’s quite comforting.

Customer Five: “Fish and chips are definitely British — a hundred percent (100%).”

Fish and chips is traditionally something you buy at a take out eatery. A portion here costs about 10 euros. The way they’re made hasn’t changed much over the years.

Ahmet Ziyaeddin, Fish ‘n’ Chip Shop Owner: “The way we do it prepare all that is very much like from the traditional, old way. And it’s very simple: The fish has to be the freshest; the potatoes have to be the best, and use the best grade.

When you haven’t a lot too many ingredients you’ve got to make sure each one is the best.”

The fish is coated in batter and deep-fried at 185 degrees Celsius for just four or five minutes. The fried chip potatoes are sprinkled with vinegar and salt. As for take-out their traditionally wrapped in paper.

Ahmet Ziyaeddin, Fish ‘n’ Chip Shop Owner: “They used to recycle
the newspaper, but they found that that the ink on the newspapers wasn’t
good, and they transferred to the food. So about twenty (20) years ago they banned it. You still have the paper that they use for newspapers but there’s no prints on it.”

Fish & chips was long considered working-class food. It was often sold at stalls or cold from a cart. The first fish-and-chip shop opened in London in 1860.

Back then as today many people bought their fish at Billingsgate market, Britain’s biggest wholesale fish market with around twenty five thousand tons of fish changing hands each year.

Mark Petrou has written a history of fish and chips to explain its success.

Mark Petrou, Fish ‘n’ Chip Shop Owner: “Because it was affordable food for the masses. And it was something that wasn’t rationed during the wars; it’s something that was readily available: As an island we were our own potatoes. We caught our own fish, and we had coal in the side of the hills.

So to produce fish and chips, and as a country was a very easy thing for
us to do,”

Different fish used to be served in different regions. Nowadays three species dominates the market.

Mark Petrou, Fish ‘n’ Chip Shop Owner: “So this is the most popular fish sold in UK fish and chip shops. This is cod, and then the second most popular is haddock; it’s got this black line down here. And the third most popular is plaice.”

Two-hundred (200) million portions of fish and chips are sold each year in Britain. A quarter of the potatoes grown in the country end up as chips. There was even a National Federation of fish fry.

Mark Petrou, Fish ‘n’ Chip Shop Owner: “It’s an industry that employs sixty-thousand (60,000) people just selling fish and chips. And then you look at the fishermen and the farmers and everything else that goes into our industry. It’s a very important part of our economy.”

Fish and chips is no longer the food of poor people, and it is not only served as takeout.

J Sheekey is an upmarket fish and seafood restaurant in Covent Garden where celebrities also come to meet and they also gladly eat good old fish and chips — in fact it’s one of the most popular meals there.

John Andrew, J Sheekey Restaurant: “Fish and chips is a bigger nostalgia trip for a lot of people; takes them back to their childhood, and people generally love fish and chips and especially if they’ve done very very well.”

Whether posh or plain, eaten on the run or in a swank restaurant, fish and chips remain a pillar a British cuisine.


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1. Fish and chips is (considered) an integral part of British culture. Fish and chips is considered a traditional British food. True or false?

2. Are Londoners fond of fish and chips? Do they love fish and chips?

3. Has fish and chips traditionally served and eaten in fine restaurants?

4. Fish and chips takes a lot of time and effort to prepare. Is this right or wrong? How is fish and chips made?

5. Are fish and chips takeaways put in boxes? What do they say about newspapers?

6. Was fish and chips considered food for poor, working-class, middle-class, upper-middle class or rich people? Why was it relatively cheap?

7. Fish and chips is still a cheap meal or snack for lower or lower-middle class people. Is this correct or incorrect?


A. Fish and other seafood is popular in my city and country. Yes or no? Give examples.

B. Where do the seafood come from?

C. What is your favorite seafood? What seafood have you eaten? Are there seafood you would like to try?

D. Are there environmental or ecological concerns regarding seafood?

E. What might happen in the future?

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