I really like pie n' mash. Not pies you get from the freezer section at the supermarket, but from one of those traditional pie n' mash shops. The ones covered with their original tables and chairs, with their original tiles on the walls that look like they've not been washed since the early 1930s when the shop opened, and where the original lady whose been serving pies since the early 30s is still sitting there, looking like she's been paid in pies instead of money. These ladies always look at me with a bit of suspicion, like she doesn't know if I know they only serve 2 types of food: large pie n mash or small pie n mash, and says, with her squinted eye "alright you won sauce wid dat luv?" (Yes, yes I do thank you).
Anyway, small pie and mash. Nuffin' better. Extra liquor, chilli vinegar. And the now painful rumbling stomach I've got now, probably due to the ulcer I'm getting.
However, I am starting to fear that the traditional pie 'n mash shop may be under siege from the Selfridges type shoppers who spends £100's of pounds on second hand clothes they could just get from Oxfam. One of the defining London East End meals, the usual haunt of east end lads and ladettes, who ask for a "nice cup o tea, fanks darlin'" and then leave for some more 'ard graft, could be the new cuisine of the poncy media types. As we walked past our local pie n' mash shop, out walked two of the most haughty Selfridges/Vogue buying/champagne guzzling/Shoreditch types. The woman had on 4 inch stilettos, tweed calf length shorts, matching short jacket and flat cap, jauntily "placed" on her over peroxided blonde head. The guy was in a pair of those extra baggy designer jeans, complete with the "worn" designer holes (which you know some 9 year old in China or Taiwan got paid 50 cents to sew in some factory, because you need small hands to get the delicate stitching done), £200 t-shirt and slightly too big leather jacket. YUCK.
Please god; don't let pie and mash shops become the new Shoreditch discovery. Please leave it to the ordinary people, the every day Joe. And the Farringdon lot like me, who are neither.