Like all big and hairy Americans, I love a solid breakfast. It’s the one meal of the day where you can really feel like a lumberjack and a baller. The beginning of your day defines how the rest of those waking hours will go, so it’s a good idea to start with a meal worthy of a stomach made out of biceps. At present, I live in a country (Spain) that doesn’t value a good breakfast (just a croissant and coffee?), and that’s made me realize how important it is to wake up and shovel up something hearty.
However, most writing advocating for a manly, beefy breakfast will also advocate for major bacon usage. As much as I love pig, some folks have sworn off the stuff, so I have to advise the rage-blooded carnivore and the idealistic vegan alike. If I have one rule for the fledgling or master cook, it’s this: if you can’t cook a badass vegan meal, go and eat your own chef hat. Below are three separate breakfast ideas for the carnivore, vegetarian, and vegan, each of them hopefully thunderously Homeric in awesomeness.
If you enjoy eating the flesh of animals, then breakfast is usually a no brainer, so take a little time and spice up that fatty meat mess. A good breakfast should be varied and slightly unhinged. So start with the centerpiece of any good breakfast, banana chocolate chip pancakes. Whip the eggs first to get them fluffy, and stuff them with bananas and dark chocolate bits. To one side should sit either a couple of links of grilled up Mexican chorizo or honey glazed ham (wrap either in a bacon weave!). Or, if you’re a little crazy, bbq pulled pork. You’ll also need toast, but try and use German bread, because it’s heavy and delicious. Add double fried hash browns or patatas bravas (Spanish home fries with a spicy sauce), and you’ve got a disturbingly awesome breakfast. Wash it all down with fresh coffee and orange juice and you’re golden.
Now, for the vegetarians here, an equally great breakfast could be yours. The pancakes could still be an integral part, but if you’re more creative, try crunchy challah French toast (but don’t skimp on the maple syrup or Nutella). Alongside the French toast, you should pile on huevos rancheros or a two-egg omelet filled with plantains and Mexican cheeses. And since you’re vegetarian, throw in some real vegetables, like zucchini in a quiche or simply sautéed green, red, and yellow peppers sliced into strips and sprinkled with cumin. Seriously, I was recently called out by a Spanish roommate about eating greens and reds for breakfast, but they’re delicious. For the pescatarians, too, throw in a bagel with cream cheese, lox, and capers (on top of everything else).
So, vegans, we come to you. Your breakfasts have to be a little more creative. You can’t sit idly by with your vegan oatmeal (almond milk is super delicious, though). Go find a recipe for vegan pancakes and enjoy the dark chocolate trick, but shovel in the strawberries if they’re in season. That, and a pile of lightly salted, peppered, and paprika’d home fries (drizzled in olive oil and baked to perfection). Add in a bowl of badass fruit salad (must include kiwi and pineapple), and you’re almost at the cliff-side of awesomeness. All you really need is a fresh fruit smoothie, a mimosa (because breakfast should go hand in hand with booze), and if you want to be the largest vegan in the land, a helping of tofu scramble (try this, meat eaters, if you haven’t before).
A good breakfast should be healthy, I guess, but a truly great breakfast should be indulgent and a little ridiculous, whether you guzzle bacon chunks or suck down yogurt parfait. True, no one has the time to make epic breakfasts every single morning, but this kind of treating yourself shouldn’t only be reserved for brunch. Sitting in front of a giant, delicious, personalized breakfast, calling forth influence from different meals and nationalities, fills you with accomplishment and, more physically, the energy to karate kick through your entire schedule with the might of a mountain man (or lady).