Part of the joy of being in Ireland is waking up every day and relishing an Irish breakfast yet to come. Granted, breakfast is done very well in America, I love our coffee & donuts, but there's just something about the Irish cooked breakfast that fires you up for the day, and sets you out in your pursuit of all things green....(if you've ever been to Ireland, and stayed in a hotel, or guesthouse, or B&B, you will know what I mean!)
What I'm referring to is known around the world as the 'Full Irish Breakfast', and I so enjoyed our breakfasts whilst in Ireland that I just had to include a blog entry on the subject, and introduce you to my spin on this Irish classic.
Perhaps it's the colder climate that makes you appreciate a hot cooked breakfast. Or perhaps it's the quality farm produce behind the fry. The thick cut Irish bacon, the sausages, or the scrumptious Irish breads. Or perhaps it's the nostalgia that a full Irish breakfast brings...whatever it is, I loved it and enjoyed several during my trip, accompanied with a lovely cup of Punjana, and I'm sure you will too!
Of course, each hotel or guesthouse will have their own spin on what makes a cooked breakfast special, and below you will find my 'take' on the subject. You see, In Northern Ireland, we know the breakfast as an 'Ulster Fry', and the addition of potato bread and soda bread to the list of ingredients makes ours very 'northern' in flavor. So, along with the fry, I'm going to give you pointers on how to make 'Soda griddle bread', an essential ingredient.... (you'll love it)
Let me invite you then to go the extra mile, see if you can pick up the ingredients, conjure up this wonderful soda bread and you too can create the feeling of an Irish morning right there in your own kitchen...(umm, just don't look out the window, or you will ruin the effect!)
So, here it is, another 'taste' of Ireland, specifically from Northern Ireland...
Judith, the Irish Foodie.
(serves 4 people)
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
4 slices of bacon
4 large breakfast sausages (sliced in two)
4 cage free eggs
1 large tomato (cut in four slices)
sea salt and pepper
4 slices potato bread (substitute with another bread)
2 soda farls (sliced in two length ways)
2 Tbsp parsley (chopped)
2 cups plan flour
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp baking soda (sift)
1 Tbsp shortening
1 cup buttermilk
1. To make the farls preheat griddle to medium high heat. Measure dry ingredients and sift soda. Rub in shortening. Add buttermilk and bind together with large metal spoon.
2. Knead very lightly with floured hands. Use a floured rolling pin to roll dough in to a circle ¾ “in diameter. Cut in to quarters with a floured sharp knife.
3. Place each quarter on griddle and cook for about 10-12 minutes on each side. (I like to cover farls with a clean, dry tea towel when cooking on the griddle). Farls are ready when bread is golden brown and the sides are firm to the touch.
4. Fry the bacon in a large skillet with a little vegetable oil until crispy. Remove bacon from pan and place on a warmed plate in low oven. Drain off some excess grease from skillet and fry sausages, adding to plate with bacon in low oven when cooked.
5. Drain and clean the pan or use a new nonstick pan to fry the eggs. Add a little vegetable oil to the pan and place on medium heat. Crack the eggs carefully in to the pan, and add a little water to steam a little. Continue to cook for about 2 minutes for ‘sunny side’ up or turn if you like them ‘over easy’.
6. Season tomato with sea salt and pepper and add to skillet, cooking to soften on each side.
7. To stack fry begin with a slice of freshly baked farl, slice of prepared potato bread (optional), fried egg, tomato, sliced sausage and bacon on top. Sprinkle a little parsley over stack!