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Fish Fingers and Custard Day – April 3, 2023

Fish Fingers and Custard Day is celebrated annually on April 3. This legendary sequence from the British science fiction television program “Doctor Who” served as the inspiration for this holiday. In this scene, Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor enjoys fried fish sticks with vanilla custard dip. Even while this may seem like a weird and slightly disgusting mix, many admirers decided to give it a whirl. This new meal was so popular that the BBC, the channel that aired the show, decided to devote an entire day to promoting it. Originally observed on April 3, 2012, Fish Fingers and Custard Day has become an annual tradition.

History of Fish Fingers and Custard Day

This episode of “Doctor Who” is the opening episode of the fifth season, and it marks the beginning of some significant changes in the series. A fresh cast and technical crew have been brought on board, resulting in arguably of the more interesting seasons to date. The eleventh regeneration of the Doctor, played by Matt Smith, has wrecked his time and space machine, as we learn in this episode. The TARDIS is the name of this machine, which is shaped like a blue British policeman’s box and into which citizens can enter if they require police aid.

The Doctor has wrecked the TARDIS in the quaint English village of Leadworth, where he encounters a little girl named Amelia Pond, who becomes his companion. The Doctor and the young lady immediately become friends. Feeling hungry after his regeneration, the Doctor asks Pond to make him something in the kitchen. After he rejects all the food Pond offers, he finds frozen fish fingers and custard in the fridge. He dips the fish fingers into the custard and enjoys them. However, the Doctor has to go but pledges to come back in five minutes. Time and space, on the other hand, are difficult to manage, and he does not return until 14 years later, by which time his buddy has grown up considerably.

When the Doctor reunites with the adult Pond, he recalls the fish custard he ate for the first time years ago. Pond then uses the dish to convince the Doctor of her truthfulness by referring to it as ‘fish fingers and custard.’ The TARDIS voice interface that can interact with the Doctor in the shape of Pond also mentions the term fish fingers and custard to remind him not to give up. The fandom of the show notes that these scenes demonstrate how much the Doctor and Pond value the fish custard as a symbol of their friendship. The dish was so popular that the BBC decided to create an official Fish Fingers and Custard Day.

Fish Fingers and Custard Day timeline

1900
The Term Fish Finger is Used

The term is first used in a recipe published in a British magazine.

1953
The First Commercial Fish Sticks

Commercial fish fingers starts when Gorton-Pew Fisheries in the U.S. introduces a ready-to-cook frozen fish finger product, branded as ‘Gorton's Fish Stick,’ which becomes a huge success.

1955
The First Batch of Fish Fingers

Over 15 billion fish fingers have been sold in the U.K. alone since its inception.

2012
The First Fish Fingers and Custard Day

The BBC decides to have Fish Fingers and Custard Day celebrated.

Fish Fingers and Custard Day FAQs

Which country is credited with the invention of fish fingers?

The concept originated in the U.K.

Who made the first fish finger?

Birds Eye produced the first fish fingers in 1955 at its plant in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk.

Why are they called fish fingers?

Fish fingers are fish filets sliced into little, thin pieces around the size of a finger and coated with breadcrumbs.

Fish Fingers and Custard Day Activities

  1. Taste the combination

    For those who enjoy “Doctor Who” or fish fingers, today is a great day to experiment with some of the more unusual food pairings. Try this combination and share it with your family or friends.

  2. Watch or rewatch the episode

    The day would also be incomplete without a screening of the “Doctor Who” episode "Eleventh Hour," either for the first time or for the hundredth time. Doing a small movie theater at home and replacing popcorn with fish fingers sounds great.

  3. Record yourself eating

    You can record yourself eating fish fingers and custard. Share your reaction on social media, whether you like it or not.

5 Facts About Fish Custard In The Real World

  1. Replaced by coconut breaded cakes

    Matt Smith said he was actually having fish fingers and custard, and he said it was delicious, but coconut breaded cakes took over after a few takes.

  2. The Graham Norton Show

    Matt Smith ate the real fish custard on The Graham Norton Show Christmas 2010.

  3. Fans eating fish custard

    The “Doctor Who” fanatics' eating of fish custard has been noted by Steven Moffat, and it has been claimed to eliminate all other breakfast treats.

  4. The genuine and fictional fish custard

    Fish custard is a savory fish-flavored custard, but while fish fingers and custard is the correct term for the Doctor's dish, it is also called fish custard in short.

  5. Mixed reactions

    “Doctor Who” fans, including Charlie McDonnell, uploaded videos on YouTube showing themselves eating fish custard with mixed reactions.

Why We Love Fish Fingers and Custard Day

  1. Enjoyed by fans

    Fans enjoy Fish Fingers and Custard Day. They have tried and enjoyed eating fish fingers and custard, so it is a beloved combination.

  2. It causes ostalgia

    The holiday brings feelings of nostalgia for people who have watched the show. It takes us back to where we were when we first saw the show.

  3. Unique combination

    Without the show, the unique combination would have never been known. The day also allows people to try the combination and decide for themselves if they like it or not.

Fish Fingers and Custard Day dates

YearDateDay
2023April 3Monday
2024April 3Wednesday
2025April 3Thursday
2026April 3Friday
2027April 3Saturday

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