Thursday, 5 March 2009

Faggots

I've always had a soft spot for faggots*. I can remember my mother feeding me them when I was but a lad. What could be nicer than a hot faggot with mushy peas?

Imagine my surprise when, moving to Thornton Heath in South London, I discovered that they had faggots there, too. Not quite the same as you classic midlands faggot. Not as rounded. But still pretty tasty. Though my mum's faggots were always better.

So let's hear it for faggots. Stonch should get some for his pub. He's already got scratchings. What could be a more perfect match that faggots and scratchings?


* Some ignorant people spell the word "fagget". Such a mistake is typical of a person of limited IQ and an inability to question what he's been told. A fag get, you could say.

21 comments:

First Stater said...

OK, you got me. Checking my English to American dictionary. OK, faggot is a pork meatball and scratchings are pork rinds. I'm up to speed and you may now continue your excellent blog.

Ron Pattinson said...

I didn't realise English - American dictionaries existed.

I hate it when an innocent word like "faggot" is abused. I'm proud to be a faggot lover.

Alex Cooke said...

I do like them very much but it's been a while since I indulged. Probably since I was last in The Star in Bath, which also happens to be on National Inventory of Heritage Pubs, where they put a bowl of faggots and pork pies on the bar of an evening. No one seems to object them then either.

Velky Al said...

Oooo faggots - haven't thought of those in donkeys. Lovely things, will have to find a recipe and introduce my good Southern Belle wife to their delights!

MentalDental said...

Faggots! Now your talking. In fact I may have to get some for tonight. I was brought up on west country faggots book from the back of the butcher's van and Thursday evening. Lovely. The ones in the west midlands were OK but not quite the same.

So faggots tonight, washed down by some dark mild. Food heaven.

Gary Gillman said...

An interesting dish historically, sometimes called savoury ducks (perhaps the dark colour and rich taste reminded some people of duck, or it was a satirical reference, perhaps, (possibly) a la Welsh Rabbit).

I believe that the name is linked to the name in some languages for liver, "fegato" I understand means liver in Italian. I do not know Latin (or Italian) but would think a Latin word may be at the root of this English culinary term and perhaps the Romans brought the dish to Britain.

Now Ron when shall we see your ruminations on that unjustly neglected English specialty, the saveloy!

Gary

Ron Pattinson said...

Pease pudding and saveloys. I've actually eaten that. At Chrisp Street market. Now in the 19th century it was famous for something other than its sausages.

Faggots and Mild. I'll be telling Stonch that's what his pub needs to give it that extra touch of class.

Artist formerly known as Wurst said...

Oh dear....That's one item you won't find at your local supermarket over here.

Gary Gillman said...

That sounds good with pease pudding. I only know them from the fish and chip shops in London. I don't like them too cold though and have been known to return one for a zap in the micro, to the wonderment of the shop staff (but they never refused and that may be because I always showed a think a genuine interest in this old English snack).

Presented with its stylish twist of protecting paper, it needs only a dab of ketchup and then we're all set. Always I had this after a pint, or a cup of tea, not before. And then a walk under and around (often) 1800's railroad culverts and chimney-potted houses in the dampish air. The Smarties and Cadbury followed as the day does the night..

Gary

Jeffrey said...

Bollocks to mild, and bollocks toy you Ron, you big galoot. I am selling Porter this evening, though.

Jeffrey said...

PS. Ron, I'm beginning to think - based on your commenters - that I'm your only British reader.

Tandleman said...

I've always had a soft spot for maids*

* See Ron's photo

Ron Pattinson said...

Jeffrey, you're so behind the times. Faggots and Mild is what the young 'uns want.

Now Porter, you want tripe to go with that.

MentalDental said...

Or Chitterlings.

Oblivious said...

Ron is that tripe cooked in milk?

Ron Pattinson said...

Yep, tripe cooked in milk. Or something else. How do you cook tripe?

Gary Gillman said...

Well, another traditional English preparation. One of the typical ways is indeed milk, with onions. Jane Grigson, the late English food writer, had a no-nonsense appreciation of these rugged English dishes and reacted constantly in her book at what she felt was a genteel prejudice against many of these good old cheap foods. I recommend her Food In England, recently reissued in a new edition by her daughter Sophie Grigson, also a noted food writer.

Jane wasn't afraid to put down a trad English dish though, or a particular preparation, if she thought it was wanting. She considered milk and onions an "insipid" preparation for tripe and as I recall suggested a more robust French approach to the dish. She also deals in her book with udder and some other very old country preparations which she fearlessly considers on their merits (this in the 70's). And why not, aren't these things all relative? Why is foie gras the nec plus ultra and faggots (or New York chopped liver or whatever) is regarded as lesser?

An index of Ms. Grigson's influence is the number of restaurants in London which stress simple, traditional ingredients. The gastro-pub is indirectly her doing in my opinion. And before her Elizabeth David laid the groundwork (and more effectually in this regard Dorothy Hartley in Food In England, 1954).

Gary

Velky Al said...

Jeffrey - nope, there is at least one more here. Though I did marry an American.

Oblivious said...

I don't, but my parents used to cook it in milk

"Eddie Rowles" said...

A comment to a very old post but you'll be pleased to hear that the-man-formerly-known-as-Stonch had faggots from Dorset on the menu all this week.

We ordered three plates on Wed - only one was left so I graciously let my mate try them - they looked very good.

Jeff says he is looking to get a regular supply of them so keep an eye open on future visits...

Ted

Ron Pattinson said...

Ted, that's really good news. I hope Jeff has still them next time I'm in the Gunmakers.