ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What is a Ploughman's Lunch?

Updated on September 13, 2014
Source

Ploughmans - a Traditional British Lunch

The beauty of a Ploughman's lunch is its simplicity! A hearty Ploughmans with a warm pint at a good pub is a wonderful thing!

However, what makes up a Ploughman's seems to be open to a lot of interpretation, with Brie being served instead of Cheddar and things like slices of orange making an appearance. The horror of it!

So if you want to know exactly what is in Ploughman's lunch, or even what a Ploughman's is period - read on! This page looks at exactly what constitutes this fine English lunch, I hope you will enjoy!

Source

The Illustrious History of the Ploughman's Lunch

The phrase "ploughman's lunch" sounds like it comes from a bygone age, you can just imagine a red cheeked jolly farmer stopping for lunch, unwrapping a simple lunch of bread, cheese and pickle under a shady oak. Certainly most people would believe that a Ploughman's lunch is simple peasant fare from way back when.

In 2006 a TV program aired on the BBC called Balderdash & Piffle, where the origins of certain words were looked at. Looking into the origins of "Ploughman's lunch" they found that In 1837 a book called "Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott" mentions a lunch of a ploughman, but evidence is not conclusive that it means the ploughman's lunch we know today. They then discovered that the Ploughman's lunch first became known as the dish popular today in 1960, it was invented as a marketing ploy by the English Cheese and the Milk Marketing Board to promote the sale of cheese in pubs! A more in depth article on the source of the ploughman's lunch can be found here: Ploughman's Lunch: Origins And Etymology

If the ploughman's lunch was invented as an advertising ploy, it has certainly become a successful one as the majority of pubs in the UK serve a ploughman's on their menus.

A Perfect Looking Ploughmans - Complete with a Pork Pie!

Source
Source

Cheddar Cheese - Essential to a Good Ploughman's

a little bit of Cheddar cheese history....

Cheddar is essential to a Ploughman's lunch, without cheddar you may as well send your plate back to the kitchen. Brie, Edam, Camembert - NO! Cheddar is quintessentially English, and nothing beats a crumbly, mature and strong tasting slice of Cheddar. Even if you don't like the mature Cheddar, even a mild or medium tasting slice is better than a slice of brie for a Ploughman's! Other cheese that can be served with a Ploughman's must be British - Cheshire cheese, Leiscester, Stilton....

Cheddar cheese originates from Cheddar village in Somerset, England. Cheddar village became the centre of dairy making since the 15th century, but there are records of cheese making in the area since 1170 AD. Cheddar Village is famous for Cheddar Gorge, a gorge cutting through the Mendip hills. There are two main caves at Cheddar Gorge that were historically used for cheese making, providing the ideal environment in which to make and mature the cheese, with a perfect constant temperature and humidity.

It is a complicated process making Cheddar and blends both artistic skill and scientific knowledge. I found this very good article about Authentic Cheddar explaining the process of making cheddar at the award winning Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company, the only cheese maker left in Cheddar parish.


Source

The Best Bread for a Ploughman's Lunch

A Ploughman's lunch cannot be served up with thin pre-sliced packaged bread, no way! It can be white or wholewheat, but it must be crusty on the outside and soft in the middle! A traditional British bread is the Cottage loaf, seen opposite and a good recipe can be found here: Nigella Lawson's cottage loaf

A lot of pubs served a Ploughman's with baguette, which whilst not perfect is passable - it is indeed crusty and soft. But to serve supermarket sliced bread, ciabatta or any of that fancy European bread will simply not do!

With the bread you need a couple of pats of real butter.

Source

An Essential Ingredient for a Ploughman's - Thick Cut Ham!

By now you are probably noticing a trend - everything must be local, thick cut and traditional. The same goes for the ham on the Ploughman's plate. Lovely thick ham from contented pigs, not wafer thin slices filled with water. If you put ham on your Ploughman's, you need mustard - and again this must be British! British pigs are not fed growth hormones and antibiotics are administered only by vets, so we have very high pig welfare standards - something to be proud of!

Here is some ham trivia for you! That rainbow sheen you sometimes see on a slice of ham does not mean that the meat is bad, some hams are cured using nitrates. When exposed to air and light the nitrate pigments undergo a chemical reaction and change colour.

Sometimes cold roast beef is served with Ploughmans, which is done well (like the ham) can be a really delicious addition to this great pub lunch.

Source

A Ploughman's Needs a Tangy Pickle

A perfect accompaniment to cheese - Branston Pickle brings out and compliments the flavours of cheddar. Branston is a firm favourite brand of pickle in England, but if a home made chutney is even better!

Check out What to Do With Branston Pickle - 21 Ingenious Ideas to get some inspiration on when to use Branstons!



Source

Pickled Onions

Not everyone is a fan of the pickled onion, they can be too vinegary and the onions too sharp for people's tastes. However, a ploughman's needs to be graced by a pickled onion or two. Like the chutney, the pickled onion compliments the creamy cheese - a match made in heaven!

A recipe for home made pickled onion is here: BBC Food Recipes

A Ploughmans Lunch Can Also Include...

Slices of apple, good quality salad, celery, gherkins, hard boiled egg, pork pie, scotch egg, a side of fat chips (fries)....

Here's an Elaborate Ploughman's Lunch...for "Gentlemen"!

Source

And Lastly...What to Drink with Your Ploughman's Lunch? - Beer, lager or cider!

Source

Do You Like a Good Ploughman's Lunch?

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Having lived in the country all my life I know what a real ploughman's lunch consisted of, they had usually half a loaf of bread with perhaps a lump of margarine in the middle, this was carved of with a penknife with cheese or cold meat, washed down with a bottle of cold tea, a far cry from today's so called ploughman's lunch.

    • robertzimmerman2 profile image

      Robert Zimmerman 5 years ago from SE Florida, USA

      Sounds like what I eat from time to time. It's called "open the fridge and see what's there!"

    • kitchenalia profile image

      Nathan 5 years ago from Ontario Canada

      They are a great lunch and I make if quite often.

    • profile image

      moonlitta 5 years ago

      Probably I would;)

    • Nathanville profile image

      Arthur Russ 5 years ago from England

      Yes, being British I'm rather partial to a Ploughman's washed down with a pint on a nice hot summerâs day; although we don't seem to get many of those these days, this year has been a wash-out with nothing but rain day after day. Ah well, perhaps next summer will be more summery.

    • kevkev227 lm profile image

      kevkev227 lm 5 years ago

      Love it, especially the cheddar and branston's...thanks for sharing :)

    • Mary Crowther profile image

      Mary Crowther 6 years ago from Havre de Grace

      A local restaurant features a Ploughman's Platter which is an assorment of cheeses. Now I know a bit about the history. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • profile image

      reasonablerobby 6 years ago

      With a pint of Speckled Hen...bliss

    • profile image

      blanckj 6 years ago

      My mother talks about them all the time and they look very tasty and hearty. It actually seems similar to what I feed my daughter for lunch sans the beer!

    • Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 6 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      I enjoyed a Pub Ploughman's lunch while on a visit to England in 1992. I remember the ham and cheddar cheese and the crusty bread.... mmmmm! Tried to play that fun Ploughman's Lunch game and got it WRONG every time... LOL. Fun trying though!

      One comment on your recommended 'warm pint' the way you British love it .... afraid I'm American and I like my 'half-pint ale' Cold! :-) Terrific story -- and now I'm hungry.

    • profile image

      jon4594 6 years ago

      made me hungary lol, really good lens :p

    • Ecolicious LM profile image

      Penny Pincher G 6 years ago

      this was educational and well put together. tasty too

    • JackieBlock profile image

      Jackie Block 6 years ago from SE Michigan

      This looks like a tasty and filling lunch. Thanks for sharing it.

    • serenity4me lm profile image

      serenity4me lm 6 years ago

      Very nicely done. I will have the cottage loaf, the cheddar and a glass of wine please. I did enjoy your lens, have a great night.

    • Richard-H profile image

      Richard 6 years ago from Surrey, United Kingdom

      Thank goodness I'm coming back to the UK next month, as I can't get most of the ingredients here for a Ploughman's lunch. Blessed!

    • debnet profile image

      Debbie 6 years ago from England

      I had one once accompanied by pickled walnuts.... yummy yum yum!!

    • DuaneJ profile image

      DuaneJ 6 years ago

      The lunch looks good and so does this lens!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)