Today is St. Georges Day – the Patron Saint of England, and as I’m English, I thought we could celebrate with a traditional English picnic on the lawn, complete with Salmon and Cress Sandwiches.
St. George wasn’t actually English, he was born in what is now Turkey, but he was a good soldier (legend has it he defeated a dragon that was feeding on villagers in a small town in what is now modern day Libya) and he was a martyr, choosing to die rather than give up his Christian faith. King Edward III liked what St. George stood for, and thought he’d be a good fit for the impression he wanted to give of his kingdom – honourable, faithful, strong, so he made St. George our Patron Saint around 1327.
We have celebrated St. George’s Day for centuries (even before he was canonised) in various ways. Some people reenact his famous battle with the dragon, some people feast and party, others have more gentile celebrations. Seeing as we’re in lock down, and are not aloud to socialise at the moment, I thought a nice sophisticated picnic might be the way to go. So grab a flask of tea, or a bottle of bubbly, a tartan throw, pack up a box of salmon sandwiches and get out on the lawn to celebrate St. George’s Day in the most English way possible. But first . . . .
Here are 5 facts about England:
(All images from Google)
1, England boarders Wales and Scotland and is the largest country within the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
2, The English flag is a red cross on a white background, called the St. George’s Cross. This makes up the central cross in the Union Jack, the flag representing the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
3, The National flower of England is the red rose. This is due to victory of The House of Lancaster in a huge battle for the throne during civil war in 1455–85. Their house badge was a red rose, defeating the House of York, who’s badge was a white rose. This period is known as The War Of The Roses. I know! Real life Game Of Thrones stuff!
4, Buckingham Palace in London, England, is the official home of Queen Elizabeth II (though she also has estates in other parts of England as well as Scotland and Wales and official residences all over the Commonwealth). Not only is she the reining Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain, she is also head of the Commonwealth, which is made up of 54 countries including Australia, Jamaica and India. If you’d like to read more about the Commonwealth, check out this website https://thecommonwealth.org/about-us it’s really quite interesting.
5, The national dishes of England Tend to be hearty, meat-heavy dishes such as Roast Beef, Bangers and Mash (pork sausages served with mashed potato and onion gravy) and fish and chips (fried, battered cod served with fried, chipped potato and mushy peas). But due to the British occupation of India from 1858-1947 we also have a love of exotic spices (though we can’t handle hot chillies) and so Chicken Tikka Masala is now also one of our official national dishes.
Ready in 5 mins – makes 2 sandwiches.
- I tin of salmon
- 4 tablespoons of mayonnaise
- A pinch of black pepper
- A pinch of paprika
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- 4 rounds of bread
- 1 punnet of cress
- Drain the salmon and pick out all the bones and scales. Give them to your cat if you have one – they’ll love it! – Pic 1
- Put the salmon, 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise, the black pepper, paprika and lemon juice in a bowl and mix well. – Pic 2
- Divide the salmon mixture equally between two rounds of bread and spread out evenly.
- Then top the salmon with a good handful of cress. – Pics 3 & 4
- Spread the left over mayonnaise over the two remaining rounds of bread and place them, mayo side down, on top of the sandwiches and cut into what ever shape you like. – Pic 5
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