Posted Monday, February 14th, 2011 by

I moved to England from Lithuania 6 years ago and have worked at The Beech Hill ever since arriving here.  When talking to our guests many of them ask me “What’s a traditional Lithuanian dish?” and I often struggle to answer, as our food is much more similar to English food than most would expect.  For example ‘bangers and mash’ although the name is something I have had to get used to, is very similar to a lunch dish from Lithuania, but served with a rich creamy sauce instead of gravy.  Also, meatballs, fish pie, sheppard’s pie and quite few other English style dishes are no stranger to our tables.

Lithuanians love potatoes, pork and sour cream based sauces (we like our rich food, not healthy, but very tasty!). The most popular dish in Lithuania is ‘cepelinai’ which are big dumplings made of potato dough and minced meat, and although it sounds like a very simple dish it actually takes about 3 hours to make. I remember as a child, before we had modern kitchen appliances my mum would spend 5 hours slaving over a hot stove so that we could enjoy this dish at least once a week.

It will come as no surprise, that after all of this time, I have grown to like most of the dishes English cuisine has to offer, but I have to say there are a few English dishes that I haven’t got used to – chip butties (I know it’s not meant to be a gourmet dish but for me it’s either potatoes or bread, not both) tea served with milk (I tried it once and decided to stick to coffee) and sage & onion stuffing!

That being said there are some traditional English dishes, which I hadn’t heard of 6 years ago, that are now making regular appearances on my table, mostly desserts!  Bread & butter pudding is one of my new favourites; cost affective, easy to cook and tasty … what else could you ask for?!

Chris Davies, our Head Chef here at the Beech Hill has been very patient with me and every time I have asked to taste something he has very kindly said yes and explained what it is, where the ingredients come from, what garnish and seasoning has been used and how long it takes to make.  I hope his kindness and patience never runs out!

Lina Martutaityte

Assistant Manager

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February 2011
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