It’s no secret that the meaning of certain words and phrases is often lost during conversations between Americans and Brits, and The British Connection is no stranger to this.
Seeing as we are located in America, many of our customers are American.
So if you’ve ever been in the store and wondered what the heck we are talking about, here are some basic translations of the most commonly misunderstood words:
Pudding = Any dessert
Pudding in America often refers to a dessert with the consistency of mousse or thick custard (ex. Jello pudding cups), but in Britain a pudding can refer to any sweet dessert. For example, items such as Sticky Toffee Pudding and Spotted Dick are essentially just moist sponge cakes and bear no resemblance to a “pudding cup.” Yorkshire puddings, however, are intended to be savory and served with a roast dinner.
Sweets = Candy
If we direct you to the shelves with the “sweets,” we’re just letting you know where you can find the chocolate, fruit chews, toffees, mints, etc.
Crisps = Chips
When we say crisps we means chips. The most popular brand of crisps in the UK is “Walkers,” which comes in flavours that non-Brits might find peculiar (Roast chicken!? Prawn cocktail!?). And if we ever say chips we mean fries.
Biscuit = Cookie
You wont find any American biscuits in our store. While an American biscuit bears a close resemblance to a traditional English scone, a biscuit in Britain simply means a cookie. They’re often hard, rather than chewy, making them perfect for dunking in a cup of tea.
Gravy = Think turkey gravy, not “biscuits and gravy”
Our gravy is not as thick as the gravy that would accompany an American biscuit. We sell “gravy granules” (in chicken, beef, or veggie flavours) for you to mix with hot water and serve up with your Sunday roast. Easy!
Bangers = Sausages
When you see “bangers” in our freezer section, you’ll see that they are just sausages. You’ve probably heard of the British dish “bangers and mash,” which simply refers to a meal of sausage, mashed potato, and gravy. Very traditional.
Tea towel = A nice dish cloth
Tea towels are kept in kitchens for drying dishes and hands. They are not intended for cleaning counters. Brits love their tea towels, which come in all sorts of patterns making them a decorative kitchen accessory. Linen is the most traditional material for a tea towel, and we sell plenty in different designs (in both linen and cotton)! Great for your home or a gift for someone else.
These are just some basic definitions of commonly misunderstood British words, but if you ever hear us say something else that you don’t understand, please don’t hesitate to ask us to translate!