Wake up. Get out of bed. Eat breakfast.
This routine is carried out each morning by people around the world without much thought. In fact, overthinking it might make us late for school or late for work, setting ourselves up for a frustrating start to the day.
Here’s my tip: Make breakfast before you go to bed. Perhaps your favourite morning meal consists of a fresh bowl of fruit and creamy rice pudding — both are items that do well overnight in the fridge.
The composition and ingredients of breakfast foods vary widely around the globe, so what does your breakfast look like?
For many North Americans, a breakfast plate often consists of eggs, bacon, sausage or ham, and toast. However, in Italy, breakfast is often a caffè latte and a pastry such as a sweet bread roll or biscotti. For me, it’s sizzling Canadian peameal bacon over avocado toast, drizzled with maple syrup!
Here are some traditional morning dishes from other places around the world:
Caribbean: cornmeal porridge; saltfish and ackee; fried plantains with eggs
Colombia: arepa de maiz con queso (small corn pancake with cheese); changua (soup with milk, egg and crusty bread chunks and cilantro); tamales tolimense (savoury corn dough filled with aromatics and roasted pork)
Australia: toast with Vegemite (or cheese); avocado toast topped with egg, seeds and berries
Spain: pan tumaca (Spanish bread, grated and seasoned tomato, with ham); bocadillo de tortilla (small egg, potato and onion sandwich); Napolitanas (sweet cream-filled pastries)
India: paratha (flat Indian bread); dosas (thin crepes made from lentils); poha (blended rice crepe)
Mexico: chilaquiles (beef tips in red or green sauce topped with a fried egg); huevos rancheros (eggs, cheese, beans, nachos); chorizo sausage with potatoes and eggs
Japan: tofu with fish and rice; miso soup; tamagoyaki (rolled omelette made from layers of egg)
Overnight rice pudding
• 1 cup cooked brown or white rice
• 6 ounces skim milk (also try almond, soy, rice or coconut milk)
• ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
• ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
• ½ cup dried cranberries or raisins (optional)
• ½ cup chopped fresh berries (optional)
• 1 tablespoon chocolate chips (optional)
• 1 tablespoon toasted coconut (optional)
• 1 tablespoon toasted peanuts (optional))
• Sea salt to taste
1. In a small bowl, add the rice, milk, cinnamon, maple syrup, vanilla and dried cranberries. Mix well.
2. Cover and refrigerate at least four to six hours or overnight.
3. Stir rice pudding and add salt to taste.
Transfer to serving bowls of your choice. Drizzle with maple syrup and garnish with chopped fresh assorted berries, toasted coconut, peanuts and chocolate chips! Serves two.
Massimo de Francesca is the executive chef of Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa. This article was originally published in the September 2019 edition of the Camana Bay Times in the Massimo’s Chef Corner column.