It is a much used statement but I have to agree, breakfast is undoubtedly the most important meal of the day. I can't argue with my stomach, and it is this organ that dominates the way that I think each day, an organ that demands food on waking. I've heard of people say that they don't or can't eat breakfast and I always eye these people with suspicion. How on earth do you focus for the day on an empty stomach?
Even worse are people who shove anything down their necks in order to appease hunger. I won't even begin to tell you some of the foods that I know the children that I teach are given each day; heart breaking is not strong enough an expression. We also have the rise of the modern Western breakfast with sugary cereals that disintegrate into some soft slurry in a bowl at the mere splash of milk. My daughter knows what they are and I would be a liar if I said that I did not cave in to her demands for this artificially formed 'cereal' every now and again.
What ever happened to an imaginative start to the day? Time is often against us first thing in the morning but I do believe that you should put at least one day of the week aside to put a bit of effort into your breakfast. We all know about the classic and not to be messed with English breakfast. Muffins with crisped bacon, poached egg and hollandaise sauce takes some beating as does a pile of American pancakes, smokey bacon and a drizzle of sweet maple syrup. Porridge is my daily choice which I mix up with cinnamon, sultanas, mashed banana and honey. It sustains and energises the body and keeps you full for most of the morning.
Last words go out to a much misunderstood and classic Anglo-Indian breakfast of kedgeree, a highly spiced rice, fish and egg breakfast that is a doddle to make and one that is primed for experimenting with. Traditionally used with smoked haddock, I like to use some of our brilliant North East kippers; not too salty and just the right kick of smokiness. And with one eye on frugal times, it is also a great way of using up left over rice. This is a meal that also works for lunch or dinner which makes it even more adaptable.
So be inspired and be a little more resourceful and creative at breakfast time. It might make those dark winter mornings a little happier and I can guarantee that your body will be all the more grateful to you. Good morning my friends.
4 eggs, boiled for 5 minutes then left to cool in cold water
200g basmati rice, cooked and drained
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
A pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper
A handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
1 lemon, quartered