National Fish & Chip Day in the UK Date in the current year: June 7, 2024

National Fish & Chip Day in the UK Fish and chips is one of the most iconic, if not the most iconic, British foods, so it is not surprising that there is a holiday dedicated to it. National Fish & Chip Day is celebrated annually on the first Friday of June to honor the cultural impact of the dish.

Fish and chips is a dish that consists of fried fish in batter and a side of chips or, as Americans call them, French fries. The tradition of frying fish in batter was introduced to Britain by Jewish immigrants from the Netherlands. At some point, fried fish was combined with deep-fried chips, and the first fish and chip shops began to emerge in the 1860s. Soon fish and chips became a popular meal among the working classes. By 1910, there were more than 25,000 fish and chip shops across the country.

From the United Kingdom, fish and chips spread to its colonies such as Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. To this day, fish and chips is extremely popular there and remains an important part of Australian, Canadian, and New Zealand cuisine, even though each country also has its own iconic dishes.

In Britain and Ireland, cod and haddock are most commonly used for fish and chips. However, vendors may also sell other kinds of white fish. The fish is most commonly fried in a simple batter made of water and flour, with the addition of a little vinegar and baking soda for lightness and fluffiness. The chips are usually much thicker than American-style French fries. Most vendors use vegetable oils for frying, but some vendors, particularly in Northern Ireland, use lard or tallow.

Fish and chips can be served with a variety of accompaniments. Most vendors sprinkle the dish with salt and vinegar right before serving. Popular sides include mushy peas, baked beans, and pickles (gherkins, onions, eggs).

National Fish & Chip Day was created in 2015 by the National Edible Oil Distributors’ Association (NEODA), a professional organization that promotes the interests of the refiners, processors, and distributors of edible oils and fats, waste oil collectors, manufacturers and suppliers of non-oil products, and other members of the edible oil industry. The main goal of the holiday is to celebrate the British fish and chip industry, and the cultural and economic impact of the iconic dish.

In 2024, National Fish & Chip Day was celebrated on Thursday June 6 (instead of Friday June 7) to coincide with the 80th anniversary of the Normandy landings (D-Day) and recognize the huge importance of fish and chips during both World Wars. Fish and chips was widely regarded as the British national dish, and the government safeguarded the supply of potatoes and fish during wartime to keep up morale.

The best way to celebrate National Fish & Chip Day is to enjoy this delicious dish in your favorite fish & chip shop. Even if you don’t live in the United Kingdom, there are plenty of restaurants and pubs around the globe that serve fish and chips. You can also try making fish and chips at home and spread the word about the holiday on social media with the hashtag #NationalFishAndChipsDay.

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National Fish & Chip Day in the UK, holidays in the UK, unofficial holidays, food days, fish and chips, British cuisine