For the most part we will be quite normal here, thanks to you all: muffins, smoothies, porridge, pikelets, that kind of thing. But just indulge me a little with my eggy, samphirey, tofu-y fixation. I might even convince you to venture to your fishmonger, or nearest beach, to get some samphire and try this. Yes, you deduced correctly: Samphire is a marine plant. A pretty one that tastes like asparagus to boot (or Wellington). And for today only, samphire isn’t just for fish. It’s my brekkie. And hopefully yours – someday…
By know most of you who have read foodtoglow more than once will have cottoned on to the fact that I like things a bit savoury. And I think I have even declared that before too. That’s not to say that I never eat cakes or desserts, more that I do lean more toward the umami side of things. And not just at dinner either. It would be pretty rare to see me with a cereal bowl in my hand, even rarer (how about never) to be nibbling on one of those new-fangled breakfast biscuits I have seen advertised on the telly (click the link for a gloriously sarky review). I know most of us are in a hurry but, c’mon, how is a breakfast biscuit better than a bowl of fruit with some yogurt and a sprinkling of nuts? Well, it’s not. And even if you have to eat on the run, what about a peanut butter (or my favourite, almond butter) and banana sandwich? Much more satisfying than a couple of poxy biscuits pumped with vitamins, minerals and a marketing budget.
Breakfast really shouldn’t be an optional meal, eaten only if we have time for the leisurely chopping of fruit, scrambling of eggs, or flipping of pancakes. I truly cannot imagine our heads of state saying, “I don’t have time for the fripperies of breakfast. I have decisions to make!!” Those decisions would no doubt be poorer on an empty or caffeine-fuelled stomach. Yes, I realise they probably have it made for them, but I know that there are quite a few folk who don’t actually think they need much more than a can of Coke to face the rigours of the day.
Even the most time-poor of folk can get up five minutes earlier to slice bread, toast it and, while it’s toasting, mash an avocado or even some ripe berries, for spreading on the hot, just-crisp bread. And those for whom breakfast time is filled with getting nourishment into others – filling cereal bowls, packing lunches – think about how you can shoehorn in time for you too. Like any meal, breakfast requires a bit of thought to do it right. Hopefully some of the ideas here can show you how with a little preparation, you can head out the door with a satisfied belly, body buzzing with energy and the right foods to keep you from pilfering the biscuit tin come 11 am.
And if I haven’t convinced you to eat breakfast by a bit of gentle bullying then how about this: people who eat breakfast are more likely to be at their ideal weight, lose more weight if on a calorie-reducing plan, increase their metabolism by 10% (burning more calories during the day). In fact, a good study reports that eating eggs compared with bagels (protein v carbohydrates) gave much longer satiety and resulted in reduced food cravings and reduced calorie intake for up to 36 hours. And a further study, reported in the esteemed journal, Nature, found that “compared to the bagel eaters, overweight women who ate two eggs for breakfast five times a week for eight weeks as part of a low-fat, reduced-calorie diet, lost 65% more weight, reduced waist circumference by 83%, reported higher energy levels, and had no significant difference in their … blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels.” There are also other studies that don’t show a dramatic difference, so I don’t think it’s a cure-all for weight and cravings. But, according to an article on Webmed, breakfast eaters generally also have better nutrition overall, improved concentration, more strength and endurance, and lower cholesterol – even us egg eaters.
According to experts a ‘good’ breakfast should ideally consist of one serving of protein, one of fat, one or two of fruit or veg and one or two of complex carbohydrates. To be honest, I don’t think about formalised portions, but rather make sure that there is a representative of all three macronutrients on our plates, with the emphasis on protein and carbohydrates. So, not just a piece of fruit, and not just a piece of toast with jam and butter.
And now, rant over, here are your ideas.
EA Stewart, known to all as “The Spicy RD,” recently posted the fragrant-sounding Banana Spice Milkshake. As a dietitian you know EA’s recipe are always going to be healthy, so her simple looking Breakfast Bananas Foster with Cinnamon Streusel Topping looks very tempting for a sweet morning treat. She also mentioned in response to my Orange Julius Fruit Salad post that she makes her own Orange Julius with real oj, egg white powder and ice. Blast from the past!
Another sweet thing is one I found over at one of my favourite blogs, Foodblog and the Dog. Natalie’s Fig, Date and Hazelnut Cardamom Spelt Scones look amazing and are vegan (bonus).
Kelli, at Everyday Nourishment, is a girl after my own heart with her love of roasted cauliflower – or any roasted vegetable – first thing. Like any clever cook she mainly does this by heating up leftovers from dinner. That is a top tip: Eat Leftovers For Breakfast. Whether it is pizza, some stew, a chicken leg, whatever: heat it and pair it with something fresh like a handful of cherry tomatoes or a piece of fruit. We like this rocket frittata (or courgette-parmesan frittata) for a leftovers breakfast, with ketchup.
Lovely Lizzy at Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things prefers to keep it simple over the summer with fresh mangoes and blueberries, but as it is coming up for winter in Australia (and the temps look very cold where she is), I think she will be making more of her gluten-free Buckwheat Pikelets.
Ellie, who is Twitter friend (@eatsleeplaugh), finds making up her porridge the night before saves time and ensures a healthy, filling start to the day. She has a few good ideas so please look at her comment on Spicy Kale and Egg Breakfast. Here’s a link to a recommended recipe called Pump It Up Muffin, a quite yummy looking recipe.
Emma of Emma’s Kitchen Diary finds that Irish chef Darina Allen’s Crunchy Granola hits the spot. I am not a traditional cereal fan but I love a good homemade granola, especially because you can adjust the sweetness and fat – and all the other bits – to your heart’s content.
Emilia of Emilia Brasier Photography has two clever ideas, one savoury and one sweet. She loves sauteed spinach paired with a fried egg and salsa rolled into a corn tortilla (mmm), but likes to give her young children protein-boosted porridge by adding in almond meal and chia seeds, along with some dried fruit and a touch of maple syrup. Lucky kids! PS Go and have a look at her head-swirling, colourful photos.
Other quick ideas:
toast or muffin topped + mashed avocado + cherry/grape tomatoes + herbs (a favourite of mine)
add ricotta or smooshed up cottage cheese to your favourite pancake batter; divide the egg you add, whisking the white – super-fluffy blini-like pancakes with extra protein
foodtoglow breakfast posts: Good-for-you Granola, Orange Julius Breakfast Fruit Salad, Spicy Kale and Eggs, Savoury Beetroot and Cheese Loveheart Scones, Easy All-In-One Breakfast – Baked Egg and Mushroom, Kale-Berry Smoothie, Tawny Seville Orange Marmalade, Two Soda Breads, Brilliant Blinis and Five-Seed, No-Knead Bread.