Every Irish person is well familiar with the good old “Breakfast Roll”. This essentially squishes together most of the components of a Full Irish breakfast with some ketchup in a bread roll. Hardly rocket science you may think… But think again, this is the tastiest, most comforting and not remotely healthy breakfast sandwich you will ever have. This is the typical cure for a hangover, and many a Friday morning in college was started with such a breakfast.
My boyfriend often accuses me of being a health nut, and never seems quite as excited as I am about porridge, fruit salad etc for breakfast, so when we go away for the weekend we generally try and compromise, with one fresh and healthy breakfast, and one more indulgent “hey-its-the-weekend” breakfast. This was a good call a few weeks back after a particularly good night out in Schull, West Cork. With our bellies full we went for a walk along the water and soaked up the sun, the refreshing breeze and visited the local Altar Wedge Tomb (as you do).
This is worth trying after a rough night out. Don’t scrimp on the ingredients though, cheap sausages and black pudding won’t cut the mustard. And ditch the awful sugary ketchup for some nice relish. Some fried cherry tomatoes and spring onions give it a nice little fresh sweetness too. We were stuck with tiny mini-ciabatta rolls which were far too narrow, try and find something wider so your roll doesn’t resemble the leaning tower of Pisa like mine did!
Ingredients (serves 2):
2 good bread rolls
6 slices Black pudding (Clonakilty Blackpudding is hands down the best)
Put a little oil in a frying pan on a medium-high heat and fry the sausages until golden and cooked through. Add the slice pudding to the pan and fry for a few minutes on each side. (Black pudding is actually boiled before it’s packaged, so you don’t have to worry about it being undercooked, as it’s already cooked through. You just want to heat it through properly and let it crispy on each side).
Fry the spring onions and tomatoes until soft, the tomatoes should be nice and sweet and gooey. Finally fry the egg for a few minutes until cooked to your liking, I like a gooey yolk.
Slice the rolls, and lightly toast under the grill on each side so they’re warmed through. Then slather generously with relish and start layering up your ingredients. I ended up slicing my cooked sausages length ways so they wouldn’t roll out. Enjoy!
Sometimes when I have a quiet weekend coming up I get the notion to make a big batch of some kind of relish, chutney or jam and fill up all the empty jam jars in my press. This weekend I decided to make a batch of Sweet Apple Relish. The last batch of Tomato Relish I made was a hit with friends and family but I’m down to the end of my last jar, and thought that this time around I would make a batch of apple relish. I’m sure pretty much every other 24 year old was doing something really exciting last Saturday night, but alas, I was making relish. And what’s even worse? I did find it really exciting!
Relish is really, really easy to make. It’s cheap, takes minimal effort and really adds great flavour to your everyday sandwiches, quiches, fry ups, omelettes… pretty much anything that could do with a kick. I went to the Glasnevin Farmers this weekend and came across a lovely woman selling the most delicious fruit and vegetables. I decided to stock up on my ingredients from her and so I left weighed down with a significant amount of bags of apples and onions for my batch of relish, and other fruity treats for later in the week.
Irish apples are perfect for this as they’re sweet and slightly sour. My parent’s neighbour has an apple tree and every year the apples fall into our garden, so this summer when they start ripening and making their way into our garden again I will probably make another batch. As the bad weather this Spring means that the Irish apples haven’t started ripening yet, I would buy ripe red apples rather than green, and I would go for the sweet ones that are packed with sweet juicy taste and a little bit of sour. Apples like coxes work, avoid crispy, watery, flavourless apples like Fuji etc.
1.5kg of red apples
2 large brown onions
300ml Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp cracked black pepper
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper.
1. Chop up your apples and onions into small chunks and throw into a very large heavy bottomed pot and add all other ingredients.
2. Stir together and bring to the boil for 10 minutes, then reduce to a simmer and stir for about an hour. When done let cool down and season to taste.
3. Transfer into sterilised jars. To sterilise jars just put clean jars in an oven heatedto 180C for 5 minutes. Simple!