When we think of a food that identifies a nation, we always have clear ideas. For Italy, pasta. For France, the crepes. In Germany, sausages. And for Great Britain, of course, fish and chips, a take away delicacy that over the years has turned from a poor dish into a real gourmet food that is presented in various ways and made with lots of types of fish.
The origin of this specialty in England is due, as in many other cases in Europe, to the influence of Jewish culture. In fact, the first examples of fried fish sold in foil, cooked in a simple batter of water and flour, can be traced back to Jewish immigrants from Spain and especially Portugal, where the tradition of pescado frito was already well established.
However, it was during the nineteenth century that fish and chips became an economical and caloric street food, ideal for the fast consumption of English working classes even within the country, thanks to the development of the railway network that allowed the arrival of the fish even in non-port areas.
Given the increasingly abundant demand, fish and chip corners became common, small street shops that only offered this food to be consumed wrapped in newspaper foils. Now in the streets of London it is difficult to find even good and traditional ones, but hanging around and being advised by Londoners it is still possible to taste the traditional one, prepared with cod and Irish potatoes.
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