Sunday 30 January 2011

Farmhouse Breakfast Week

What makes the perfect bacon sarnie?

You may, or may not, have known that this past week has been Farmhouse Breakfast Week. I read an article recently that said something along the lines of (bear in mind I can’t remember where I read it, or what the actual figures were) that in the 1950s, over half of us began our day with a cooked breakfast but today it’s dwindled to less than 5%. Now, I have just plucked those figures out of thin air, but am fairly certain they aren’t that far off. It’s probably done wonders for our cholesterol as a nation, but I’m sure we’ve made up for it in other ways, such as eating fast junk food.

Everyone has an answer to the above question of bacon sarnies: some prefer white bread, others brown, and others still have theirs toasted. We argue over brown or red sauce, if any, or a combination of the two. Butter, marg. or none at all? But surely the most important question is the bacon we use? The other peripherals are simply the detail.

I was recently sent some bacon from Denhay Farm, including their own label dry and Wiltshire cured, and their Spoilt Pig range. Reviews suggested that this tasted ‘like bacon used to taste’. Now, since I’m not, perhaps, old enough to know what that actually means, I can hazard a guess. So I began the task of creating my perfect bacon sarnie:

Sunblest white bread

Heinz tomato ketchup

Lurpak spreadable butter

Spoilt Pig smoked bacon

I enjoy the fact that the fat from the bacon melts into the butter and combines with the ketchup to dribble out as you take that first bite!

I spread the bread thickly with the butter, and one side with the ketchup. Grill the bacon until the rind is crispy, and place three piping hot rashers into the sandwich. Slice so you have two rectangles and devour with a cup of coffee whilst still hot and oozing! I couldn’t take a picture because by the time I had done, my sandwich wouldn’t have been piping hot, and that's the pleasure of it! If you’re using a good quality bacon, and by this I don’t mean a supermarket’s finest, I mean a butcher’s cut or Denhay farm, you’ll find it hardly takes any time at all to grill, mainly due to the lack of added water. Within minutes the bacon is cooked and a quick turn-up of the grill will ensure the fat is crispy and you’re ready to go. 

As for my cooked breakfast, well, I’m usually just a sausage and grilled tomatoes girl with white toast dipped in, but the OH likes the full works. So it was that this weekend, he managed a plate of bacon, sausages, beans, eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms and toast with orange juice and coffee. I never do black pudding, or hash browns, but this did hit the spot!


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