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2019.01.24

Brunch!

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Dear readers,

I hope you haven't caught the flu! It's been going around recently, so take care! Make sure you get lots of vitamin C to fight illness.

Today I'm going to talk about a very important British institution: brunch. Do you know the meaning of this word? Can you guess? 'Brunch' is a mix of breakfast and lunch, and it's my favourite meal!

People in the UK typically eat brunch at the weekend, on a Saturday or Sunday, from around 11am to 1pm. You can eat brunch at home, but there are thousands of cafes and restaurants all around the UK which offer brunch at special times. I'm not sure how or why brunch became such a big part of British life, but I suppose at least one reason is that people often go out drinking on Friday and Saturday nights, and want to stay in bed until late the next day. Brunch with friends is perfect when you're a bit hungover, feeling lazy and looking for the first meal of the day.

I'm sure you're wondering why I love brunch so much. Well, the answer is the food! Brunch food is not just ordinary breakfast or lunch food. Actually, there are many brunch dishes that are unique to brunch, that you can't find at any other time during the week. Classic brunch dishes include the 'full English': toast, eggs (cooked as you ike them), sausages, bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms, hash browns (a kind of potato) and beans. You can also get a vegetarian version of this classic dish, with vegetarian sausages and no bacon. Other great Brunch dishes are 'eggs florentine' (poached eggs and wilted spinach on sourdough toast with hollandaise sauce), 'eggs benedict' (poached eggs and bacon on an toasted English muffin with hollandaise sauce), and avocado and smoked salmon on toast, often also with an egg. You'll notice two main themes here: eggs and toast. British people love toast and eggs, and brunch has so many variations. This being said, at brunch you can also find a lot of breakfast-style dishes like fruits, granola and yogurt, and delicious sweet porridge. This kind of food is so comforting to me, and the tastes are really great! You can wash down your food with a big glass of orange juice, a smoothie or some tea or coffee.

On a rarer occasion, people even have alcoholic brunch! During the meal, they drink champagne or bucks fizz. There are many places (especially in nice hotels) which offer 'bottomless brunch'. 'Bottomless' here refers to your glass, because there are free refills! However, this kind of brunch is not a good idea if you already have a hangover from the night before.

In Japan I have yet to find a café or restaurant which serves brunch food at the weekend. So if you know of a place I can find brunch, please do let me know! There isn't much food I miss here in Japan, but I certainly miss brunch. I hope it catches on here soon!

If you have any questions about this strange weekend breakfast/lunch institution please don't hesitate to ask. And, needless to say, if you're travelling in the UK, you simply must try it!

Have a great week, and stay healthy!

All the best,
Sarah

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