No pressure there then for all my fellow B&B owners, but you know its not quite as simple as that. The most important meal of the day should, in my mind be memorable, something to look forward to with confidence. The tourists that visit Skye have often been travelling for several days if not weeks, so the real challenge regarding breakfast is to offer something a bit different. After all can you imagine eating bacon, pork sausage, lorne sausage, haggis, Stornaway black pudding, eggs, grilled tomatoes and home made potato cakes for countless days? I know I would certainly be seriously thinking of missing breakfast if that was all there was on offer each and every morning of my holiday.
Yet, it is surprising that not many B&B’s offer alternatives to the standard Scottish cooked breakfast although there are those who do offer continental fare, which often suits our European visitors. Think about it though, how many B&B’s do you know that offer omelettes or kippers as part of their breakfast menu? On balance, there aren’t many I can tell you- having stayed in quite a few over the years. Its such a pity really because the humble omelette is a great alternative for vegetarians and those who can’t have gluten and the variety of fillings can be staggering yet it is quite easy to create a tasty omelette so I wonder why they rarely figure on the menu.
As for kippers, well a good kipper (smoked Herring for the uninitiated) is amazingly filling and extremely good for you being full of all those excellent qualities such as omega 3 that go towards keeping us healthy. Baked in a hot oven, wrapped in tinfoil, for 8 minutes and served with slices of freshly baked brown bread and Scottish butter, a kipper will keep you going until lunchtime and beyond. Oh I know you end up with a house smelling of kippers for a while, but the taste is sublime and kippers smoked in the Highlands of Scotland are a real ‘meaty’ treat.
Then of course, there’s Scottish pancakes, sweet little gems of airy tastefulness. These always go down well with home made preserves and, when in season, Scottish Strawberries, Blackberries or Raspberries (yes – we do have our own soft fruits from Angus and Fife, so full of flavour too). Children especially love these little pancakes for breakfast. I always cook three as a starter or if being eaten as an alternative to a Scottish Breakfast, I cook more. I had a guest today who put three on a plate, added a summer fruits yoghurt and then covered it with sweet little gems of strawberries and blackberries. sounds wonderful, wish I had thought of that. Add a drizzle of honey or Canadian Maple syrup and wow!! Delectable!
Finally and certainly not least, is toast! We make our own bread – in a bread maker – but its still homemade. I make a brown loaf of mixed grains, roughly half white, with half wholemeal, granary mix and the white loaf is a seeded mix? Toast will never be the same again!
So there you go, tasty alternatives for the most important meal of the day. What other alternatives would you offer your guests, or maybe your family? For me personally its all about creating an impression, a fond memory. Especially perhaps for guests who either can’t eat certain foods or who are tired of the usual.