Wouldn’t it be exciting to know what the world eats for breakfast? Different countries have different choices depending on their cuisine. So, let’s go around the world to find out how best to begin the day! You can certainly enliven your repertoire of breakfast recipes now….
Middle East: Early morning sees a bustle of activity outside most bakeries, as people come to buy still warm bread for their breakfast, to eat with eggs, fresh fruit and vegetables, honey, nuts and yogurt.
Greece: The Greeks prefer a light breakfast of bread, goat cheese, olives and tomatoes.
Mainland Europe: Mainly a variety of cold meats, cheeses and breads. In Belgium, Austria, Holland, Switzerland and Germany hot coffee or chocolate is served.
In Denmark, Finland and Sweden breakfast is a light meal usually just fresh bread and coffee. In Norway where summer daylight comes in very early, it is an enormous affair: fish, cold meats, fresh bread, hot waffles, cheese and eggs, washed down with hot chocolate, milk or coffee. In Spain and Portugal it is a brisk downing of coffee or chocolate and a pastry or simply some toast. In Italy and southern France, buttered bread and strong coffee start the day.
Africa: Many North Africans begin their day with soup often harira (lamb and lentil broth), flavoured with saffron and la kama. A typical South African breakfast might start with a fresh papaya before progressing to bacon and eggs.
Caribbean: A popular start to the day is cassava bread fried in butter, but heartier dishes are also common. The traditional Jamaican breakfast is saltfish and ackee – a fruit that appears aptly like scrambled eggs.
South America: Breakfast in South America consists, for the most part, fruit or fruit juice, bread rolls and tea, coffee or chocolate.
Mexico: The Mexican day starts with desayuno, first breakfast, and consists of coffee or more rarely, chocolate, and the sweet breads and pastries inherited from Spain. A second breakfast, almuerzo, comes at around midday and usually comprises a more substantial dish as country style eggs with mashed refried beans and a fresh chilli sauce.
North America: Big meals and snacking throughout the day are two ways to sum up American eating habits. Breakfast can be anything from freshly squeezed orange juice, cereal and toast, to pancakes and waffles served with sausages, maple syrup and butter. Coffee is generally drunk at breakfast and throughout the day. Try Nutty Waffles with Orange Caramel Sauce.
Japan: Rice sprinkled with nori flakes and miso soup is common breakfast fare. The miso is mixed using chopsticks and the broth is then sipped from the bowl.
Korea: Breakfast is a sit-down meal with dishes served at once and eaten with chopsticks and spoons. The inevitable kimchi (Korean pickled vegetables) are present for breakfast and lunch which are light affairs.
China: Chinese favour the congee: a thin glutinous rice soup that is traditionally eaten for breakfast, into which is thrown whatever ingredients are at hand: perhaps soybeans, preserved eggs, pickles, dried fish, or water chestnuts.
Vietnam: Traditional breakfast is a steaming bowl of pho (rice noodles in broth with shredded beef or chicken), either home made or bought from a favourite street vendor. Only a minority of Vietnamese prefer a Western style breakfast of buttered bread with coffee and tea.
Thailand: Rice porridge is the traditional Thai way to begin the day, eaten with pickled radishes or other preserved vegetables, and perhaps enlivened by some minced pork plus a few chillies.
Malaysia: Breakfast can be a filling affair usually consisting of steamed buns or Nasi Lemak, a rich coconut milk porridge which can be sprinkled with dried fish and accompanied by anything from a hard boiled egg and sambal to a full-size fish curry. Lunch is a lighter meal.
Indonesia: The standard breakfast is rice porridge which is bowl of rice mixed with omelet and crumbled dried fish. Another popular first thing in the morning is Nasi Goreng meaning literally fried rice that is mixed with whatever leftovers are at hand.
Phillipines: Filipinos also begin the day with rice, often fried with a hint of garlic and served along with salted dried fish.
After all this touring of the world, we will next have a detailed tasting of India’s popular breakfast recipes.