The History of United Kingdom Breakfast
Full English Breakfast
A traditional full English breakfast includes bacon (traditionally back bacon), poached or fried eggs, fried or grilled tomatoes, fried mushrooms, fried bread or toast with butter, sausages and baked beans, usually served with a mug of tea. As nearly everything is fried in this meal, it is commonly called a "fry-up".
Black pudding is added in some regions, as are fried leftover mashed potatoes (called potato cakes) or hash browns. Originally a way to use up leftover vegetables from the main meal of the day before, bubble and squeak, shallow-fried leftover vegetables with potato, has become a breakfast feature in its own right. Onions, either fried or in rings, occasionally appear. In the North Midlands, fried or grilled oatcakes sometimes replace fried bread. When an English breakfast is ordered to contain everything available it is often referred to as a Full English, or a Full Monty.
Full Cornish Breakfast
The traditional Cornish breakfast includes hog's pudding and Cornish potato cakes (made with mashed potatoes mixed with flour and butter and then fried), or fried potatoes alongside the usual bacon, sausage, tomato, mushrooms, egg and toast. In the past traditional Cornish breakfasts have included pilchards and herring, or gurty pudding, a Cornish dish similar to haggis, not to be confused with gurty milk, another Cornish breakfast dish made with bread and milk.
Full Scottish Breakfast
In Scotland, the full breakfast, as with others, contains eggs, back bacon, link sausage, buttered toast, baked beans, and tea or coffee. The breakfast is "made Scottish" by the addition of Scottish style black pudding, sliced sausage, and tattie scones. It commonly also includes fried or grilled tomato and/or mushrooms and occasionally haggis, white pudding, fruit pudding or oatcakes. As with other breakfasts it has become more common, especially within the home, to grill the meats, puddings and tomatoes and to only fry the eggs and tattie scones. Another more historical Scottish breakfast is porridge and may occasionally be served as a starter in smaller portions.
Full Welsh Breakfast
The traditional Welsh breakfast includes laverbread, a seaweed purée which is mixed with eggs, bacon, and cockles and fried into crisp patties.
Full Irish Breakfast
An Irish breakfast consisting of sausage, black and white pudding, bacon and fried eggs.
In Ireland, as elsewhere, the exact constituents of a full breakfast vary, depending on geographical area, personal taste and cultural affiliation. Traditionally, the most common ingredients are bacon rashers, sausages, fried eggs, white pudding, black pudding, toast and fried tomato. Sauteed mushrooms are also sometimes included, as well as baked beans, liver (although popularity has declined in recent years), and brown soda bread. A full Irish breakfast may be accompanied by a strong Irish breakfast tea (such as Barry's Tea, Lyons Tea or Bewley's breakfast blend) often served with milk. Fried potato farl, boxty or toast is often served as an alternative to brown soda bread.