Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Breakfast #20: Not So English Breakfast

Are you wondering what happened to the “chicha” in Chichajo? Chicha stands for my love for chicharon and all things piggy (literally and figuratively)…like bacon, ham, slow-braised pork belly, roasted suckling pig, and all that go in that direction. This also stands for my dangerous liaisons with food that is not exactly good for me: Bone marrow, foie gras, burnt animal fat (you know, that bit at the end of a roast), butter, mayonnaise, egg yolk.

Lately, I have humoring my healthy side…indulging in fruits and vegetables and yogurt and granola (all of which I also love). High time to shake things up a little as the “chicha” in me has been clamoring for some action. So I appeased her with this – my slightly Spanish version of an English breakfast.

I wasn’t bashful in the fat department when preparing this, so if you are in any way squeamish about fat and calories and cholesterol, please go no further! Stay here or here and we’ll call you back when it’s safe!

The first time I had an English breakfast was, aptly enough, in London. I was visiting my good friend Christine. She was based in London at the time, and I had just come from Finland. It was my first time to live on my own and away from home. I was thrilled with the freedom and discovery, but work weighed heavy on my shoulders as I fought to learn the ropes far from any support system. Thank goodness for Christine! She was a major lifesaver (still is) during some very anxious times. There were many things she did that cheered me up (and on!) and one of them was preparing an English breakfast for me.

A full English breakfast is a lollapalooza of breakfast proteins and starches (and fat), heaped together on a plate – substantial, zany, unapologetic, and in my book – awesome! Sure you can start with the backbone of bacon and eggs, but for me, the more over the top the better! Yes to the beans and the blood sausage! Yes to toast and hash browns! Fry it up and pile it on!

In that spirit of everything goes, I threw together this version. I had some leftover fabada (a Spanish bean stew) with I used for the beans element. Since my fabada had bacon slab, chorizo, and morcilla, I figured that covered the bacon, sausage, and black pudding. Instead of hash browns I used leftover roast potatoes (from a roast chicken dish) which I refried in olive oil with shallots, red pepper, and olives to stay within the Spanish theme. I then fried an egg in some chorizo oil**, smooshed everything onto a plate with a small baguette, and dove right in!

This type of breakfast is an excellent way to use leftovers, like I’ve done here with the beans and potatoes. It is also the type of breakfast that works great if you are in need of major fortification. Or cheering up. Or if it’s a Sunday and you want to be lazy and piggy :) And it does wonders for a hangover.

Thank you Christine for that long ago English breakfast (and the countless everything elses)! Here’s to sharing more food and adventure with you! :)

**What is chorizo oil? When I make fabada (or fry up chorizo) a lot of deep red, aromatic oil from the chorizo floats up. Normal people would skim this off and toss it. But I’m not normal people. I keep it in the fridge and fry eggs in it. Waste not, want not.


Manggy said...

Waste not, want not indeed! And what a way for leftovers to go!! I haven't really indulged in breakfast for a loooong time (uh... I think last was chicken tocino, sinangag, egg, pancake, and longanisa after a rough 24-hour duty... last year, or maybe one of those Baguio breakfasts..). Today it was beans and toast (how English!)-- a far cry from your grand plate :)

Ling said...

Hi Joey,

"But I'm not normal people."

Aha - neither am I in that respect as well!! :D I have a tub of rendered duck fat that I've saved from when I roast duck; it's brilliant for roast or sauteed potatoes! And I have a bowl of lard from making MM's adobo; it's been sitting out next to the hob, and I've been using it for stir-fries etc. Hey, if lard was good enough for my granny, it's good enough for me!

You really kicked the ol' English brekkie up a notch - respec! Speaking of fabada, you might be interested in this book by Paul Richardson: "A Late Dinner: Discovering the Food of Spain". In it he writes about a fabada that almost did him in. It's a fantastic read; I really recommend it.

Thanks much for your reply to my e-mail; was delighted to receive it. Straits Chinese recipe coming right up!


Veron said...

This looks so yummy, Joey. And I love chicaron. Too bad my brother cannot bring it in from the Philippines (the one with some meat attached to it) because they confiscate it all the time at customs.

Joanna said...

Oh my gosh, eggs cooked in chorizo oil?? That is possibly the most brilliant idea EVER. How do you store the oil? Is a small jar in the fridge okay, and how long would it last? So going to try this...

Pilar - Lechuza said...

What a delicious breakfast !! And with chorizo oil!! You really know how to wake up!!

Dondon said...

That's perfect breakfast ever!! I want it on my table..Im gonna start to drool...

LyB said...

That egg is just begging to be pricked with a fork and let its yolk ooze right onto that gorgeous plate of comforting foods! That is the perfect breakfast! Or lunch, or dinner... :)

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

Oh yes - love the idea of eggs fried in the yummy oil that comes out of cooked chorizo. English breakfast is a most brilliant thing but your version could possibly overtake it.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A scrumptious breakfast! That'd get me out of bed in a matter of seconds!!! Gorgeous!



mtan said...

the yolk of the egg is about to crest onto the potatoes and meats.... I want to reach into my screen and poke the bread into the yoke!

Bordeaux said...

Quite the prolific breakfast maker at the moment. Everything looks fantastic. And is really hard for me to look at or read right now as I have not had mine yet. Wow!

lobstersquad said...

wow. fabada for breakfast!!! what did you do after that, run a marathon?
it sounds like the best english breakfast ever.

Dhanggit said...

well another breakfast of yours that tortures me...i was thinking should i add up chicha on dhanggit for i love anything fatty and bad for health just like you hehehe.;but chichadhanggit dont sound good at all LOL

edamame said...

I am interested in the food culture of your country. And I support your site. If there is time, please come in my site.
From Japan

ChichaJo said...

Hi Manggy! You must have breakfast to get you through your duty and your studies! Even if “breakfast” is at some odd hour :) I like to be a drill sergeant to my leftovers…I try to whip them in shape!

Hi Ling! Duck fat…I wish! Unfortunately I haven’t yet ventured into cooking duck but how I would love to have some duck fat to roast potatoes in…YUM! Lard…so under-appreciated I think ;) Thanks for the heads up about the book…I will look for it! And I’m looking forward to that recipe! :)

Hi Veron! You will just have to get your fill when you visit :) Or make your own! If you can make a pork belly confit then I’m sure chicharon will be a snap :)

Hi Joanna! It’s great…I love it! I keep it in a small jar in the fridge and try to use it as soon as I can :)

Hi Pilar-Lechuza! We all need motivation in the mornings :)

Hi Dondon! I loved it too :)

Hi Lyb! I know! I was rushing through the photos to do just that!

Hi Amanda! I certainly didn’t want to waste any of that chorizo oil! I learned to do that from my dad :) It’s from him that I get my love of all things fatty!

Hi Rosa! Thanks :)

Hi M! That’s what I did after I took the photo! :)

Hi Bordeaux! Just trying to live up to the blog name ;) Thanks! To think this was mostly leftovers!

Hi Ximena! Hahaha! I fell of my seat laughing when I read your comment! Yes, with a breakfast like this I should have run to the next city and back…but no, I was bad and just did some chores instead. We are lucky that I did even that and not go right back to bed…heeheehee! :)

Hi Dhanggit! Hahaha :) Aw! Chichadhanggit isn’t that bad ;) Anyways, whatever our names we can both enjoy food with fatty goodness…then repent after with yogurt and fruit (equally yummy) :)

Hi Edamame! Thanks…will do :)

christine said...

Aww you brought back such nice memories. I loved having you over and having you to prepare breakfast for! :) Your visits were so comforting for me. And I must say, this is one gorgeous looking Spanglish breakfast! It's genius. :)

zlamushka said...

thats a fantastic breakfast idea. I have recently switched to savory breakfast, since the sweet became soooo boring after eating them for about past 10 years non-stop.

glad to see you blogging recipes again. Hope you re participating my Tried and Tasted event this month.

oggi said...

Making yummy breakfast out of leftovers is just brilliant!

ces said...

hey joey!
i just had bulalo for lunch! and now you're making me oh so guilty! but i agree, i am also cutting down [trying!] on fats and carbs! it's about time, really! but this not so english breakfast is irresistible!
hey, why not make a weekly meme for breakfasts? just an idea, with your site theme and all:) enjoy the weekend!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Nens! I'm glad we were both there when we needed us :) Haha! Does that make sense? We had some ownderful times...and of course they are far from over! :)

Hi Zlamushka! I like to switch from sweet to savory and back so I don't get bored :) Actually, savory breakfasts are very common over here so it wasn't really a stretch for me :) I'll check it out!

Hi Oggi! Yes, and when you are too tired (or sleepy!) to think you can always stick everything in a omelette ;)

Hi Ces! Oh yum! I looove bulalo!!! I guess as long as we balance the bad with the good we'll be ok :) I think there's already a breakfast event out fact, I should be joining it!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Beautiful and amazing leftovers. That's a breakfast fit for a queen. I know I'd feel like a queen sitting down to it.

Parker said...

That looks very delicious. Love beans and sausage for breaky. Nice picture.

Suzana said...

This is a bit too much for me... but my dad would love it!! The picture looks great. :)

kosenrufu mama said...

your posts are always so interesting , thank you;)

aria said...

oh wow look at that! i never did have a real English breakfast when i visited England. this looks fantastic!!!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Tanna! Thanks! Leftovers can be the start of many amazing breakfasts :)

Hi Parker! Thank you :) Beans and sausage are always a good combination in my book too!

Hi Suzana! My dad would love this too...I took after him!

Hi Ester! Thank you for the nice comment! :) I’m glad you enjoy them :)

Hi Aria! I love English breakfasts :) Having a hearty breakfast with protein and starch and eggs is also something that Filipinos enjoy so I think I just took to it naturally :)

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Ahh, we all need a little fat now and then. Your Spanish version of the English breakfast looks sensational!

SteamyKitchen said...

i'm a big fan of ANYTHING pigalicious too!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Susan! I agree :)

Hi Jaden! Yay! I'm in good company then :)