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The Great British BREAD DEBATE

The Great British BREAD DEBATE

When is a bread roll not a bread roll?


When it’s a Barm, Bap, Batch or Bun. Across the British Isles there is a large variety of names for this
staple that many eat daily. Lets take a dive into all their given names.

The Roll- From the tip of Northern Island to Sussex, mid-Wales, Somerset, Devon, Shropshire, The
west midlands and central Scotland. Also known as the Scotch Morning Roll, they tend to be chewy
and have a fired or crisp lid. In Glasgow you would usually find them filled with square sausage, black
pudding, a fried egg or potato scone.

Stotty Cake- Ask for a bread roll in the northeast and Newcastle and you may well be served a stotty,
or stottie cake. A traditional flat bread originally made using dough off-cuts, it doesn’t get a second
rise or second knead and was once cooked in the bottom of the oven as it cooled. The result is a
limited rise and more dense filling.

Cob- All around the UK, from North Wales, north Norfolk and the northwest to northern Scotland and
the East Midlands, you will often hear a bread roll called a cob. Locals claim it is the original word
used to describe a roll.

Bap- Similarly to cob, bap is used in London, the northeast, Northern Ireland and much of south
Wales. Die-hard bap-lovers distinguish a bap as a softer bread roll with minimal crust and fill them
with crispy bacon and sauce for breakfast.

Bin Lid- In Liverpool and the surrounding area a request for a bin lid should, in all likelihood, net you
a white or brown bread roll. Apparently, there is nothing humorous about walking into a fish and
chip shop and ordering a chip bin lid in these parts.

Bread Cakes- In Leeds, a bread roll may simply be called a bread cake and resemble a typical British
soft bun, or more traditional versions may resemble a flatbread. In Lancashire this style is known as
an oven bottom.

Aberdeen rowie- The Aberdeen rowie (also known simply as a rollie, an Aberdeen roll or even a
buttery) which has the nuttery richness of a croissant. They are popular throughout southwest
Scotland.

Muffin- Not to be confused with a sweet muffin, a muffin in parts of Northern Ireland means bread roll.
This is also not the same as an English breakfast muffin, which is flatter and cooked on a griddle.

Barm- Popular in the northwest of England, a barm cake is not a cake, but a soft, round, white bread
roll.
Batch- A bread roll in north Warwickshire, Nuneaton and Coventry, is commonly known as a batch.
The name probably derives from a batch of bread rolls being baked.


It appears everyone in the UK has an opinion on just what to call the humble bread roll. Just do not
forget to find out the correct name for the area you are in, or you just might end up with something
unexpected.

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