Sunday, November 21, 2010

Reminiscence: British Style Breakfast

I can eat so called "British style breakfast" at any hour of the day or night. My husband finds it really wierd that I can eat it at midnight, just before settling in for the night. I used to order it at the British Community Association - BCA in Cairo around 8pm and I regularly order the Santa Fe Skillet at the All American Diner at IHC whether its before or after an evening of theatre.
In a strange way, this is comfort food for me. In the days when I did eat breakfast, while I was going to school, Mum would rustle up bread and eggs-to-order each morning. We'd get exotic cheeses or bacon or ham, if dad had just returned from one of his trips. The locally made cured meats (from Farm Stores in Mallikatta or this guy who had a cold freeze near Shedigudda) were extremely expensive in those days and were only bought if one of the 4 of us had done very well in our exams.

So a solid breakfast with baked beans, and cold meats in addition to the bread and eggs either meant that dad was home or we were celebrating a minor scholastic success. It meant all 6 of us gathered around the dining table in our little apartment quickly sharing a meal before running off in our respective directions.

Potatoes were never a part of this morning feast at mums, so I never add hash browns or mashed potatoes or fries when I make this meal at home.

I normally start with a cured meat - bacon, ham or sausages. Once this has been fried, I pop in some onions saute for awhile and then add sliced mushrooms with a little salt and pepper and fresh or dried herbs depending on my mood at the moment. This provides the veggies and fibre for the meal. Once I've plated this, I fry an egg or 2 in the pan. The egg absorbs the flavours of the onion, mushrooms and cooks in the meat fat. The eggs go into a different plate. I then warm up some bread in the pan since I prefer lightly warmed bread to toast.

I occasionally spoon a teaspoon or 2 of baked beans onto the plate, but mostly I just use tomato sauce. I love tomato ketchup with omlettes and scrambled eggs.

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