I love St. Patrick's Day because it's a day when I get to celebrate my heritage with the world and also because I get to enjoy one of my favorite meals: Irish breakfast.

Each St. Patrick's Day, my husband wakes up before the crack of dawn and prepares for me a traditional Irish breakfast so that I can continue a tradition I've followed for years before I leave for work. Did I mention that I leave my house at 3:30am for work? What my husband does for me, that's definitely called love.

What you and I might think is a traditional Irish breakfast is actually more of a modern invention. It wasn't until the middle of the 17th century that the potato found its way to Ireland and before then, most people ate a diet that reflected the cattle based economy of the time. What this means is that those with wealth were able to eat a meal of meat, which those who were poor ate a breakfast made of things like oats, barley, and offal (which is the not so tasty organs meat).

The most common ingredients in an Irish breakfast are bacon, sausage, fried eggs, white pudding, black pudding, toast and fried tomato. A full Irish breakfast is also almost always also accompanied by a strong Irish breakfast tea which is often served with milk.

In our house, we're not exactly into eating offal. I mean, there's nothing wrong with eating it and some people like the taste, but it's not really our cup of tea. So, we've created our own Irish breakfast menu and this is it:

Ingredients:

  1. 6 slices of Canadian bacon
  2. 2 tablespoons butter
  3. 4 eggs
  4. 2 small chunks of tomato
  5. 4 slices of soda bread

Directions:

  1. Lay six thick slices of Canadian bacon in a single layer in a large frying pan and fry on both sides until it's nice and brown. Remove the meat from the pan, but leave the grease because you're going to cook your eggs in this delicious goodness.
  2. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and crack 4 eggs into the pan, being careful not to break the yolk of the eggs.
  3. Add 2 small tomato slices and 4 slices of soda bread to the pan and fry gently on low heat, occasionally turning the tomato slices.
  4. You don't want to mix all of this together in the pan- you want to keep everything. This isn't a mash.
  5.  In the pan, brown the eggs on both sides.
  6. When the egg whites are set and the yolks are still a bit runny, take them out of the pan and plate them. Each plate should have two eggs, two slices of toast, three slices of Canadian bacon, and a small hunk of tomato.

[via History Ireland]