At the risk of offending people on both sides of this discussion, Colombian food and British food aren’t internationally known for their experimental or sophisticated nature. That said, people in both countries are extremely fond of their national cuisine, and will stop at nothing to defend it.
That’s not where the similarities end, however. Both countries have long specialized in food that fills you up for a working day; giving you energy for some hard manual labour. For us Brits it was for mining, for Colombians it will have been to farm. Either way, plates are big, hearty and reasonably easy to prepare. Surprisingly, this has lead to some remarkably similar dishes. Here are my pick of the brother and sister dishes of Colombian and British cuisine.
Bandeja Paisa and the English Breakfast
This is perhaps the most startlingly similar of all the pairs and, as such, has to be put first. Both are huge, greasy, barely manageably dishes that are basically the result of an explicit “more is more” philosophy.
Coffee and Tea
Although globalisation has inevitably brought tea to Colombia and coffee to England, these are quitessentially national beverages drunk at alarming rates in their respective lands.
Arepa and Sandwich
While I’m hardly the biggest fan of arepas, you can see the similarities here. It’s just that bread is, y’know, better, and the sandwich has had many centuries to perfect itself in various countries. Give the arepa time, however, and it may just catch up.
Empanadas and Cornish Pasties
Empanadas and Cornish pasties are long lost twins, no doubt about it. Stuffed with onion and meat, they’re both delicious. Empanadas take the crown, however, just for their variety and the lack of such a strong post-feast onion smell.
Mojarra Frita and Fish & Chips
When people think of British food, they think of fish and chips. Who knew that Colombia would have its very own version?
Any more ideas? Leave us a comment!