Two nations divided by a common breakfast

February 10, 2009

While waiting at my local deli for a bagel and a coffee this morning (the breakfast side of me remained firmly in New York when the rest of me moved to London), I was aghast to see what the locals were eating for breakfast.   Here’s the selection, in all of their gruesome glory, with translation for the non-British amongst you:

1) A bagel with cream cheese:  Now you’re probably thinking that that sounds perfectly acceptable in New York or anywhere else bagels can be found.  And so did I, until I realised that  for some unknown reason the person asked for cucumber and pepper with this combo.  Why ruin a perfectly lovely bagel with cucumber?  This is what I often asked myself when I arrived to London and was surprised to find that  all sandwiches ordered with “salad” came with lettuce, tomato and… cucumber.

2) Brown Bread with egg mayonnaise and tomato: This is two untoasted pieces of whole wheat bread with egg salad, salt, pepper, paprika, butter (as if the mayonnaise wasn’t enough) and slices of tomato.  Yuck.  Reminds me of something I heard about the difficult transition the English sandwich company Pret a Manger had to the New York market: they had to retool all of their recipes, massively reducing the amount of mayonnaise and other sauce in each one to get the New Yorkers to bite.  Pun intended.

3) A bun with tomato sauce and butter: Translates to a fluffy white roll with ketchup and butter.  Needless to say, this one wins in terms of the least likely thing I would ever eat for breakfast, and the order that put me over the edge and forced me to write this post.

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One Response to “Two nations divided by a common breakfast”

  1. […] refusing to apologise for this).   Those of us who are less famous, can write silly posts about eating breakfast and our nannies without fear of damaging our reputations (much […]

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