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Anwen and Gwen

pleasure_past in dw_britglish

Welsh Food and Birthdays in School

1. I need a food that Gwen and Ianto are both likely to have grown up eating and know how to make, but that Tosh and Owen probably aren't familiar with, or if they are familiar with it, they probably think it's a bit disgusting and wouldn't want to know how to make it.

2. For a different fic, how common is it for a primary school class to celebrate a child's birthday? I'm writing a fic set a few years in the future, and Anwen's birthday is falling on a school day. Would it be normal for Gwen and Rhys to send in cupcakes for the class to celebrate? If it is normal, are they likely to have been given a list of foods/ingredients they can't send in (because of allergies) at the start of the year?

Thanks in advance for any help!


Laverbread might work for the food.
It would gross Owen out but I don't think it would bother Tosh so much (the dried laver in my store cupboard is Japanese)
To be honest, Tosh being grossed out isn't half as important as Owen being grossed out. Tosh isn't really super important to this scene. It's mostly Gwen, Ianto, and Owen who matter.
Thank you!
Laverbread (boiled seaweed) is probably the best fit for your a bit disgusting and wouldn't want to know how to make it criteria. Otherwise Welshcakes (gridle scones) or Bara Brith (traditional cake) Crempog (Welsh pancakes which are closer than any other British food to the traditional US breakfast pancake) are 'universal' Welsh dishes (there are any number of local recipes though, and local alternative names).
Welshcakes are fairly easily available in England these days, they're certainly in my local supermarket. Admittedly I may be more aware of them than some people as my parents lived in Wales for a long time (I was born there, though moved to England too young to remember very much) so they seek out Welshcakes, which other English people might not.
Thanks! It looks like laverbread probably is my best bet.
Things in schools have changed a lot since I was in primary school (I'm 21 now) but we used to take fairy cakes in. They only ingredient we would have to avoid would be nuts. Schools seem to be a lot stricter now though. You could get them to call the school to ask about allergies?

(I can't really help with the first one. The only Welsh foods I grew up on were Bara Brith and Welsh Cakes, neither of which are likely to disgust Tosh and Owen. In fact my English housemates loved the Welsh Cakes I gave them!)

Edited at 2013-07-07 07:50 am (UTC)
My fiancee grew up on the Gower penisula in South Wales and likes to eat cockles (both picked and regular on the rare occasion he can get them".

I'm 31 and we never celebrated birthdays when I was at school. I think I recall my sister who teachers year 1 and reception that Haribo sweets are a popular thing to send in as they are free from a lot of the more common allergens.
My son's school ban birthday stuff being brought in - no cakes, no sweets, nothing. It's easier to celebrate no children's birthdays than to mark some but not others (as in, some parents will go mad and send in 400 cupcakes ... and some kids won't even get a birthday cake at home). They do sing, and some teachers give out Haribo to the whole class with an extra one for the birthday child, but that's it. When I was at school it was similar, except that we didn't have Haribo at all, just boiled sweets.
Thanks! It seems like this one varies a lot from school to school...?
Didn't Gwen and Ianto both grow up in Cardiff? I don't believe there is any traditional Welsh food they'd have grown up eating that a woman with Japanese heritage would be grossed out by. Cardiff is really not super-Welsh. All I can think of is something like chips with curry sauce, which tends to be popular in Wales and a few other parts of the UK but, IME, is not really the trendy chip shop meal in London.

I know they sometimes celebrate birthdays in my child's school and she's told me they've eaten cakes or sweets. I assume the parents have sent them, but she's got a summer birthday so I've never bothered to ask about the process.
Gwen definitely did. I think Ianto probably did. To be honest, Tosh being grossed out isn't half as important as Owen being grossed out. Tosh isn't really super important to this scene. It's mostly Gwen, Ianto, and Owen who matter. I just need a food that Owen won't know how to make but Ianto and Gwen both will.

I love this thread. Learning about ethnic foodways is one of my great joys!

My husband was born in Korea, and so has always eaten seaweed. In Korea, the word for what the Japanese call "Nori" is "Kim" -- so we always have packages of Kim about. They are often subtitled "Laver" which is not a word in American English. How incredibly interesting to discover, after all these years, that it is a Welsh word!!!! We had no idea that seaweed is a popular Welsh food.

So, it seems the Welsh also eat Cockles.... we are intrigued by the idea. I am imagining whole cockles preserved in a tin? Like tinned clams? which are either smoked or plain?

We stayed at a hostel in Wales once but were not offered Laver or Cockles for breakfast. (It was incredibly tasty homemade granola and organic yoghurt!)

Now I've got "Molly Malone" in my head. ....

Here is an interesting "Welsh Food" gift basket.

Thanks as always to the brilliant folks at dw-britglish who make this one of my favorite comms. :D

Edited at 2013-07-08 12:50 am (UTC)
Cockles come in little jars, most supermarkets sell them all over the UK. At the seaside it's common to see stalls selling all manner of seafood, cockles, winkles, whelks, those crab sticky things, in little plastic bowls. There are vinegars and things to sprinkle on. My experience is that you need to like sand to enjoy cockles!