Picnics are an important part of British society and can be casual outings or formal events. The food served varies based on host and participant tastes, the amount of people being served and the location of the picnic. Several common foods have become mainstays of the British picnic.
A staple at traditional British picnics, the Scotch egg is both portable and easily eaten as a finger food. A Scotch egg is made by boiling an egg, encasing that egg in sausage meat, rolling it in breadcrumbs and deep-frying. The Scotch egg is then refrigerated and served cold at picnics. There are many variations on this classic food, which include using duck or quail eggs and different types or flavours of sausage. Because of the popularity of this food, many companies have begun to mass-produce Scotch eggs, which have increasingly become available at grocery and convenience stores in the UK.
The pork pie is a traditional food in Britain that has many variations based on the area in which it is made and the place where it will be eaten. The picnic pork pie is made just as other pork pies, but it is a finger food that measures three to five inches across. Picnic pork pies consisting of cured or uncured pork cooked with pork jelly that is poured into a mould lined with pastry dough and then baked. These foods also vary with the addition of ingredients such as bacon or apples. These pies are often topped with fruit to make them more suitable as picnic fare.
A classic British picnic food, coronation chicken is a salad made with cooked chicken that has been cubed and combined with mayonnaise, herbs, spices and curry powder. Always served cold, coronation chicken can be eaten as a salad or used as a filler for sandwiches.
Egg and Cress Sandwiches
Cress is an edible herb of the mustard family that, when added to a sandwich made of diced boiled eggs mixed with mayonnaise, makes a sandwich commonly seen at British picnics. These sandwiches are usually made with some variation of crusty white bread and cut into triangles for easy consumption.