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Strawberries and Cream

1070 of 1160 nominations


Strawberries and Cream

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Strawberries and Cream

Strawberries and cream – the perfectly complementary combination. An English summer is unimaginable without them. Legend has it that Cardinal Wolsey was the first person to serve the two together, at his palace, Hampton Court. These would have been native English wild strawberries, very different to the large, plump and juicy fruit that we enjoy today. Developing the perfect strawberry has been a mission for horticulturalists all over the world for hundreds of years. The modern strawberry has its basis in a French experiment which crossed the flavourful but small woodland strawberry from Virginia with the much larger and hardier white strawberry discovered in Chile. But the English became the world’s strawberry experts with the pioneering work of Michael Keens. Keens’ Imperial (1817) and Keens’ Seedling (1821) were fruit of such perfection that they caused strawberry fever to sweep the nation and it has never stopped.

And a last word from William Butler: “Doubtless God could have made a better berry, but doubtless God never did.”

Image: Maria Gibbs


Your comments

The classic British summer dessert that we eat regardless of the weather. Plus picking your own strawberries and feasting on them straight from the plant is a blissful summer activity.

Eleanor Wallace

Strawberries & Cream are of course a delicious, but it is not simply the eating of strawberries which has such an english feeling, it is also their arrival which brings back blissful memories. As a child, I can remember returning home from school on early summer afternoons, being ushered into the dining room and my granny would hold out a bowl to me - it would be full of the year's first ENGLISH strawberries, with sugar sparkling over them and laying in....sorry not cream, but....."Carnations" evaporated milk. A truly heavenly combination. It was like the arrival of a much-loved friend who you hadn't seen for an eternity.
Rose le Breton

maybe strawberries'n cream is tasty, maybe even *yummieh!* but it's definetely not tipically english, isn't it?! don't you think, it is beloved by people all over the world?
Dominik Funken

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I nominate the red pillar box.

Donna Spencer