Jellied Eels (18)
Jellied Eels (18)
High quality jellied eels made by Barney’s Seafood in Billingsgate. This tub comes with 18 pieces of eel with jelly totalling a net weigh of 750g. Jellied Eels goes well with Pie and Mash, which is a classic east London dish.
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History of Jellied Eels
The history of Jellied eels dates back to the 18th century and is a Cockney classic dish. The Thames used to be the habitat of a large population of European Eels. Traditionally, fishermen would set out nets in the river all the way to central London. As a result, London grew a large market for this nutritious fish at a low cost in the form of Jellied Eels. An interest in Eels spiked in the 18th century and eel, pie, and mash houses started popping up around London. Eventually, the river Thames got more polluted and the habitat of the eels in London ended. Afterward, Dutch eels would arrive by ship in distribution centers such as Billingsgate Market.
Eels are naturally gelatinous fish, which makes them release certain proteins when boiled. Jellied eels are made by boiling the eels in a fish stock. Once the stock cools down, it solidifies into a jelly. The fish stock often contains vinegar and nutmeg. The real taste is determined by the recipe of the maker. This particular product is made by Barneys in Billingsgate. They have been in the business of making Jellied Eels since 1969, and are considered one of the best.
The eels used in Jellied eels are of the species Anguilla anguilla, which is more popularly called European Eel. This snake-like fish swims from Europe to the Sargasso sea near the Caribbeans to spawn. Anguilla anguilla is listed as critically endangered on the Red List of Threatened Species. The Netherlands has pioneered in the sustainable farming of Eels. In order to properly farm Eels, they have developed a “swimming pool” simulating the almost 6500km trip from Europe to the Caribbeans. This has made it possible for Jellied eel makers to continue making this traditional cockney product.
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