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What’s for Breakfast?

What’s for Breakfast?
on March, 22 2013

Whether you like to sit down to eat a stack of pancakes with maple syrup or simply want to start your day with a cup of coffee and a bagel, it’s certainly important to start your day right with a good breakfast.

A hearty breakfast means different things to different cultures. For some, bacon and eggs are a staple, while for others, bread and tea will do. Given the wide differences per custom, seems like there’s no such thing as a typical breakfast. Here is how breakfast is done in different parts of the globe.

The French start the day eating light, usually a bit of bread, such as brioche, croissants and pains au chocolat, flavored with some butter and jam. Coffee or hot chocolate is also consumed in the morning. This is similar to an Italian breakfast, which comprises caffe e latte and prima colazione. Biscotti cookies may also be eaten or fette biscottate.

On the other hand, Germans typically eat dark bread with cheese and meat. Boiled eggs are also included in a typical German breakfast. Sausages are also common, similar to those who live in Poland.

The Finnish opt for open sandwiches to start their day, similar to those who live in Latvia, Croatia, Bosnia and other Slavic countries. The bread is buttered with margarine and topped with cold cuts or hard cheese. Others choose to eat porridge, called puuro. This is made or rolled oats and served with milk and butter. For some tartness, lingonberry jam may be added.

Huevos or eggs make part of a hearty Mexican breakfast. The eggs are fried and served with a tostada, ham, peas, tomatoes, platains, queso fresco and black beans. It’s a heavy dish that traces its roots from the Yucatan Peninsula.

El Salvador
Beans, rice and plantains constitute the typical breakfast of El Salvadorians. Sweet plantains are fried and served with casamiento, a dish made of black beans and rice cooked in a sauce made of onions.

Costa Rica
Costa Ricans have a similar breakfast called Gallo Pinto, a dish made of rice, black beans and eggs. Fruits are also a major breakfast staple, given the choice of mangos, papayas, oranges and pineapples. Given the very nutritious food choices Costa Ricans have for breakfast, it’s not surprising that the Nicoya Peninsula of the country has been listed as a Blue Zone, which means that the population has a longer lifespan than those from many other countries.

Corn is the staple food item for the Venezuelan breakfast. This is also typical for other Latin American countries including Ecuador and Peru. The corn is used to make corn flour, which is baked into bread called arepas. This is eaten with fish and cheese, or served with black beans, cheese, avocados and even shredded beef.

The Philippines
When Filipinos have time to sit down and eat breakfast, they make a meal out of it. Steamed or garlic rice is eaten for breakfast, alongside fried egg and some cured meat such as longganisa sausage or cured sweet pork called tocino.

Malaysians also have rice for breakfast, although it is served in a different way. Nasi Lemak is made of coconut rice that is flavored with anchovies, roasted peanuts, egg, cucumber and is wrapped in a banana leaf. To add some heat, sambal or a spicy sauce is served.

Sri Lanka
Sri Lankans start their day eating their version of pancakes, which is called appam. The pancake is shaped like a bowl and is made of rice flour that has been fermented. Side dishes include fried egg while dipping sauces can be a choice between honey or cream of coconut.

There are many variations in breakfast items in China, depending on the particular region. Tea is a constant in China but for breakfast, dumplings are the way to go in Hong Kong and Guangdong. The steamed dumplings are usually made of meat or vegetables. For something heavier, a rice porridge called congee is served. Tea in the morning is mixed with soymilk.

The typical breakfast for the Vietnamese is soup. Just like many of their other meals, pho, the traditional soup of the country, is eaten as the first meal of the day. The broth is served with a number of fiber rich vegetables including carrots, sprouts, basil and even cucumber.

Meat is not typically eaten for breakfast in Israel. Instead, they opt for fish served with a diced vegetable salad made of red onion, tomato, cucumbers, parsley, cilantro and red or green peppers called Salat Katzutz. Tsfatit is a type of cheese that may also be eaten for breakfast, aside from yogurt.

Many dietitians consider a typical Turkish breakfast to be one of the most nutritious. This is because it includes fiber-rich vegetables, olives and honey. Cucumbers, tomatoes, feta cheese, honey and bread are eaten together and washed down with a cup of tea. Also, breakfast is an opportunity for the entire family to sit down together and enjoy a meal, so breakfast time is a leisurely moment for Turkish families.

Egyptians start the day eating Ful Medames. This tasty dish is made of mashed fava beans and is eaten with olive oil, onions, parsley and garlic with a squeeze of lemon juice.

In Morocco, tagine is what is eaten for breakfast since it is usually the dish served from the night before. This is a delicious stew made of lamb and several flavorful aromatic spices cooked in a special pot called tanjine.

Scambled ostrich egg for breakfast? It’s certainly possible if you live in Botswana, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Namibia and South Africa. Aside from this, a heavy sausage is typically eaten for breakfast, which is called boerewors.

Bernadine Racoma

Bernadine is a writer, researcher, professional and multi-awarded blogger and new media consultant. She brings with her a rich set of experience in the corporate world, as well as in the field of research and writing. Having taken early retirement after working as an international civil servant and traveling the world for 22 years, she has aggressively pursued her main interest in writing and research. You can also find Bernadine Racoma at .

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