There’s an old adage that says, “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dine like a pauper,” that speaks to the importance of a hearty breakfast to set you up for a productive day. With St. Patrick’s Day coming up, enjoying a traditional Irish breakfast at home might be one of the most delicious and satisfying breakfasts you’ll ever have. Here’s how to cook up a savory and hearty celebration meal along with a couple other classic Irish dishes to jump start the festivities.
The Full Irish Breakfast
- 4 Irish sausages
- 4 slices of bacon
- 1 8-ounce tube of black pudding*
- 1 8-ounce tube of white pudding*
- 4 large eggs
- 4 small tomatoes – cut into quarters
- 11/2 cups of mushrooms
- 4 boiled potatoes – cooled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 can of Irish beans
- white pepper and salt to taste
- grated cheese (optional)
- Irish soda bread
*Black pudding is a sausage made from cooked blood mixed with pork, beef, fat, oatmeal, bread, potato or barley. White pudding is a similar sausage without blood. The puddings are usually sold in tubes akin to tubes of sausages. As part of a traditional Irish breakfast, both black and white puddings are usually sliced into medallion-like chunks and fried. Both types of sausage can be found in the deli section of most grocery stores in North America.
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
- In a large frying pan over medium heat, melt about 2 Tablespoons of butter.
- Fry the bacon until cooked through and browned – but short of crispy. Remove from pan, place on stacked paper towels to remove excess fat. Transfer to two heat-resistant serving plates. Place in oven to keep warm.
- Place the sausages in the frying pan and cook until done and nicely browned. Transfer to oven to keep warm.
- In a small sauce pan over medium heat, warm the baked beans.
- Slice the puddings to a thickness of your liking and begin frying in the frying pan. Add the potatoes. After a couple minutes, add the tomatoes and mushrooms. Continue to cook and flip until all ingredients are nicely browned. Transfer to the serving plates in the oven.
- Finally, fry the eggs to your liking. Top with grated cheese if desired and season to taste.
- Remove plates from oven. Transfer the eggs to the plate along with a generous scoop of baked beans.
- Serve immediately with Irish soda bread (recipe below).
Irish Soda Bread
If you’re looking for a quick Irish-inspired breakfast we recommend making this traditional Irish soda bread the night before. Serve with tea or coffee and Irish butter. Remember to be generous when cutting into this loaf, the Irish don’t enjoy thinly sliced bread.
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons white sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup margarine, softened
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease a large baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and margarine. Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an ‘X’ into the top of the loaf.
- Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Check for doneness after 30 minutes. You may continue to brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes.
Photo courtesy of: Logatfer
A traditional Irish cocktail designed to give even the most tired soul an instant pick-me-up, Irish coffee can be adjusted to be enjoyed as an early morning treat that replaces your morning brew. Omit the whiskey if you’re enjoying before work, or include it after hours.
- 1 1/2 oz Irish whiskey
- 8 oz strongly brewed coffee
- 1 tsp sugar (brown or cane sugar can also be used)
- 1 tbsp whipping cream
- Start with sugar in the empty glass.
- Next pour in the whiskey, followed by the coffee.
- Stir until sugar is dissolved, and let mixture settle.
- Whisk whipping cream until thick and peaks appear. Float the freshly whipped cream on top and serve.
Photo courtesy of: Food & Wine
Dine like a pauper
Looking for a light dinner dish to end your Irish-inspired day? We recommend delicious Irish heritage cabbage. Quick and easy, this dish makes for a great, easily-digested meal to end off your day.
- 2 slices Irish bacon, diced
- 1 medium head cabbage, cored and cut into wedges
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven’s broiler.
- Place cabbage into a large pot. Add water and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat until tender, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Drain and set aside. Drain cabbage, and drizzle with melted butter. Sprinkle with bacon and nutmeg. Transfer to a baking dish.
- Place under your oven’s broiler until the top layer is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Serve with salt, pepper and vinegar as desired.