Thursday, 22 March 2007
Brunch, lunch or one big munch?
I love the idea of brunch. The Oxford Dictionary describes brunch as, 'a late morning meal eaten instead of breakfast and lunch'. A gentleman in the 19th century had this to say on the matter - "To be fashionable nowadays we must 'brunch'. Truly an excellent portmanteau word, introduced, by the way, last year, by Mr. Guy Beringer, in the now defunct Hunter's Weekly, and indicating a combined breakfast and lunch." I must be missing a trick here Mr Beringer. Or maybe I'm just greedy. Because sometimes I have eaten a breakfast, (okay, I am up very early most mornings with the nipper), then a form of brunch, then a lunch.
Do we actually do brunch over here in the U.K.? I always saw it as an American thing, a classic eating experience to be had if you ever visit New York. Lots of bagels, crisp bacon and dare I say it, Maple syrup (sorry Ben). Blueberry muffins. Steak omelettes. Lashings of coffee and orange juice. Enough to get you through until tea time at least. I actually think it was invented for people who can't get out of bed early rather than the Oxford Dictionary description. But what a great idea. I reckon that if there was a cafe that opened at 10am until 12pm each day, only serving brunch, they would make a killing. As long as the food they served was quality of course.
The following 'brunch' is something I pinched and evolved from Mrs Smith. It has to be the only meal where I don't feel ignorant or guilty spraying it with tomato ketchup. Crispy potatoes combined with charred red peppers and onions, sizzling and crisp chorizo sausage and a big old fried egg on the top. Make it properly, it will not be an oil slick on a plate. What you will get is an incredibly filling and satisfying breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner. A magnificent one pot meal that works in every way. Break the rules and serve it at any time as it is very very delicious. 'Start spreading the news.....'
Hot Potato, Chorizo and Pepper Brunch
Serves 2 breakfast-less people
4 large potatoes
150g Chorizo sausage cubed
1 large red pepper sliced
1 onion thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic sliced
1 tbs paprika (try and use smoked)
A pinch of chilli powder
1tbs finely chopped parsley
Freshly ground pepper
Fried egg (optional!)
Tomato Ketchup (optional!)
1 - Peel and cut your potatoes into 1 inch cubes. Drop into a pan of cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer for approximately 10 minutes, until they are almost cooked through but still keeping their shape. Drain under cold water until cool and reserve.
2 - In a large frying pan, heat up 1tbs olive oil. Add the chorizo and stir fry until crisp for 5 minutes. be careful, it will catch and burn very easily. Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve.
3 - Drop in the onions and peppers and stir fry until caramelised. Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve.
4 - Drop in the potatoes and stir fry until crisp and golden. Return the chorizo, peppers and onions to the pan along with the paprika and chilli. Stir fry until thoroughly combined and glowing in the spicy red oil of the chorizo.
5 - Finally stir in the parsley and a good grinding of pepper. Serve with the optional fried egg and a squirt of the red stuff.