30 January 2014

Jellied Eels

Pie 'n' mash shops were once common across East and South London, but are now few and far between: tastes and quality expectations have moved on. Few would frequent Cockneys, in Frith Road, Croydon, for the standard of the fayre. The menu consists of 'beef' pie, stewed or jellied eels, mashed potato, liquor (once made using the water in which had been cooked the eels, but now parsley sauce), and tea.

Yet the plain decor of clean white wall tiles, half a dozen booths of wooden benches and marble-topped tables, and black-framed monochrome photographs of pearly kings and queens, is very inviting. Vinegar, the traditional condiment for pie 'n' mash, is supplied in the form of large reused Jack Daniel's bottles.

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