Eton mess

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Eton mess
Eton mess at Black Horse Inn, Nuthurst West Sussex England 2 slightly different focus point.jpg
A plate of Eton mess
Place of originUnited Kingdom
Created byEton College
Main ingredientsStrawberries, meringue, cream

Eton mess is a traditional English dessert consisting of a mixture of strawberries, broken meringue, and whipped double cream.[1] First mentioned in print in 1893, it is commonly believed to originate from Eton College and is served at the annual cricket match against the pupils of Harrow School.[2]

Eton mess was served in the 1930s in the school's "sock shop" (tuck shop), and was originally made with either strawberries or bananas mixed with ice-cream or cream.[3][4] Meringue was a later addition.[5][6] An Eton mess can be made with many other types of summer fruit,[7] but strawberries are regarded as more traditional.

A similar dessert is Lancing mess (which uses bananas), served throughout the year at Lancing College in West Sussex, England.

The word mess may refer to the appearance of the dish,[5] or may be used in the sense of "a quantity of food", particularly "a prepared dish of soft food" or "a mixture of ingredients cooked or eaten together".[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Darra Goldstein; Sidney Mintz; Michael Krondl; Laura Mason (2015). The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets. Oxford University Press. pp. 243–. ISBN 978-0-19-931339-6.
  2. ^ Arthur Henry Beavan (1896). Marlborough House and Its Occupants: Present and Past. p. 162.
  3. ^ Weir, Robin; Caroline Liddell; Peter Brears (1995). Recipes from the Dairy. London: National Trust. ISBN 0-7078-0243-1.
  4. ^ Blumenthal, Heston (2005-02-05). "The appliance of science : Another fine mess". The Guardian.
  5. ^ a b Blumenthal, Heston (2003-06-28). "No messing". The Guardian.
  6. ^ Smith, Michael (1973). Fine English Cookery. London: Faber and Faber. ISBN 0-571-10349-9. (Revised edition London: Serif, 1998, Foreword by Geraldene Holt; ISBN 978-1897959367.) See Dupleix, Jill (2004-06-03). "Eton mess : Strawberries and cream make a superb summer pudding for lazy, hazy days". The Times. London.
  7. ^ A recipe by Heston Blumenthal, for instance, uses bananas: see Blumenthal, Heston (2006-02-12). "Eton mess : Look, no berries – this Eton mess is a crispy, creamy, zingy heap of a treat". The Sunday Times. London.
  8. ^ "mess". Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. Retrieved 2007-11-25. The Oxford English Dictionary defines mess as "[a] serving of food; a course; a meal; a prepared dish of a specified kind of food." or "[a] portion or serving of liquid or pulpy food such as milk, broth, porridge, boiled vegetables, etc.": Simpson, John, ed. (March 2002). "mess, n.". OED Online. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2007-07-10..

Further reading[edit]