Dinner With Churchill


I’ve just finished reading Dinner with Churchill by Cita Stelzer and have been immersed in the world of British cooking. Churchill proclaimed to prefer simple foods, but to him that meant roast beef, champagne and other expensive items, all prepared to exacting standards and mostly served elaborately, with great attention to detail. It was a fascinating little book to a modern history buff who also relishes her food and entertaining. I very much enjoyed discussing it with my Book Club recently.
We each take it in turns hosting our Book Club and I always like to take a little something as a hostess gift. I decided against the Prime Minister’s favored Pol Roger champagne or Romeo y Julieta cigars, and deemed a British food item more appropriate. I went with treacle pudding, a classic winter dessert that is impossible not to devour: steamed sponge cake topped with golden syrup, a sticky, sugary substance. I used a Union Jack paper napkin and simple red and white tape to wrap the tin, following a British theme but with a picnic feel. (Picnics – of the Churchill variety – also feature in the book.)
Here are a few of my go to British treats that I like to give:
British Gifts
a – Cadbury’s chocolate – the only chocolate according to the British
b – Twinings tea – British breakfast tea at its best
c – Ribena – a blackcurrant drink, traditionally a popular cold buster
d – Bakewell tarts – an almond flavored pastry and sponge confection
e – Lemon curd – a creamy and citrus jam alternative
f – Coleman’s mustard – English mustard with instantly recognizable yellow branding
g – Walker’s shortbread – a Scottish favorite

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