Cream on First

by Gethin Thomas September. 13, 2020 398 views

Devon and Cornwall are famous for their cream teas. Devon and Cornwall also have age old rivalries over really important issues like cream teas and pasties. Food is after all the most important thing in the world.

A cream tea is a warm scone, similar to what Americans call a biscuit, which is nothing like a British biscuit which is what an American would call a cookie. Are you with me so far?

So we have a warm Scone/Biscuit which is cut in half and it has strawberry jam and cream added. To add further confusion Jam is what Americans call Jelly, while the British Jelly is what Americans call Jello, I think. One is fruit thickened and set by pectin while the other is basically coloured water set with gelatine. Are you with me so far?

I said food was important. As George Bernard Shaw is reputed to have said quite accurately, "The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language. "

To further quote Ronnie Corbett "but I digress".

Herein lies the saying "Cream on first" in the county of Devon. As in Cornwall jam/jelly is added to the scone/biscuit first and the cream placed on top of the jam. In Devon however, cream is placed on the scone/biscuit first with jam/jelly on top. Such is the seriousness of this issue that you can now buy bumper stickers for your Devon flag which has the adopted county slogan included.

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David Nurse 2 months, 1 week ago

Nice Post, for me, Jam first, then the "clotted cream" never realised it was a Devon / Cornwall thing.

Actually, either first or second is great when in the West Country Sunshine.

(Good job you didn't mention the Tea first or milk first debate)!

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Gethin Thomas Replied to David Nurse 2 months, 1 week ago

The tea thing is an interesting one. I had a porcelain tea set years ago that you could virtually see through. They were very popular in Edwardian times I think. I once poured black tea into one of the cups which instantly cracked, it was only a hundred years old Ooops! Now in the far East they drank it out of heavy pottery not thin porcelain. I did hear years later that this was why the fashion for milk in tea in Britain came from. It made sense having destroyed one cup myself. Of course it meant milk first. This cooled the tea as it hit the porcelain. Don't know if any of this is accurate though.

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
R Kuerbovich 2 months, 1 week ago

Very funny post! Thank you so much. "Such is the seriousness of this issue that you can now buy bumper stickers for your Devon flag which has the adopted county slogan included" This sounds more like a life motto, but quite unpractical if you are in a teashop ("please, waiter, have look at the rear of my car"); are pins with the "cream on first" available?

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Gethin Thomas Replied to R Kuerbovich 2 months, 1 week ago

smile

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Camellia Staab 2 months, 1 week ago

Why did I feel like I was reading a tongue twister? Great post! Put a smile on my face. smile

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Gethin Thomas Replied to Camellia Staab 2 months, 1 week ago

I was going to move on to bumpers and fenders but thought better of it.

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Björn Roose 2 months, 1 week ago

Imagine being a non native speaker of English ... We always have to chose between English English and American English. As my native speaking professor used to say: stick with your choice, that's the only reasonable thing to do. And he was not even dealing with the cream question smile

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Gethin Thomas Replied to Björn Roose 2 months, 1 week ago

We British are often accused of being too lazy to learn another language. But which one for us to learn? Which language would be useful all over the world if you already spoke English? Maybe Spanish, but only certain areas. I was disappointed I didn't speak Spanish in South America, you experience so much more, but again everywhere we went people spoke English. I used to be fluent in Welsh but only useful in Wales if you find someone really old who still does not speak English, such as my Great Grandmother who died before I was born.

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
Björn Roose Replied to Gethin Thomas 2 months, 1 week ago

But why would one only learn a language when you can use it everywhere? I have learned French, German, English (forget about that language being useful everywhere by the way), Hungarian and Italian. A language is way more than a basic tool for communication, it's a window opening on a new world.

2 months, 1 week ago Edited
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