Feature: An American breakfast in London

The Great British breakfast is arguably the best in the world. There are plenty of arguments why it should be a centrepiece of B&Bs in the UK, chief among them being that foreign visitors to Britain expect the British breakfast experience, and it is a proven winner that will satisfy most of your domestic guests.

However, there is no reason why you shouldn’t extend what you offer to encompass breakfast themes from other parts of the world, and indeed cold cuts of bratwurst, salami and spicy smoked andouille adorn the breakfast buffets of many B&Bs across the UK.

Not so common in these isles is the Amer- ican breakfast menu. Although US visitor numbers are slightly down on 2017* there  are still expected to be a total of more than 2 million American visitors to the UK this year. Offering them the choice of a meal resem- bling what they are used to eating at home can help them spread the word when they are back home in the US, as well as helping with those TripAdvisor reviews.

Expectations of quality sausage are lower among Americans, owing to the fact that the availability of high-quality, independently produced meat products is generally poor. The kind of bacon generally available in the US tends to be crispy, fatty and streaky – the reason many Americans favour purchasing the Canadian variety, which typically comes in round strips cut from the loin of the pig compared to American bacon that comes from the fatty belly.

The range of sausages available in US supermarkets is very limited. Hot dogs, bologna and grill-type low-grade sausages are most common. Compared to Europeans, the average American consumer knows very little about sausages. Consolidation of the US meat industry is to blame to a large extent, re- sulting in huge meat processors that produce thousands of pounds of a limited selection of sausages. Local butchers subsequently find it very hard to compete on price.

MORNING GLUTTONY

In the film Pleasantville, actress Reese Wither- spoon, playing the role of Jennifer, is inadvert- ently transported with her brother David back to a 1950s black and white sitcom in which everyone is always wholesome and happy.

On their first morning the two are con- fronted by the prospect of partaking of the family breakfast: blueberry muffins piled high on plates and topped with the contents of a large jug of Canadian maple syrup; stacks of pancakes; and eggs, sausage, crisp bacon and ham steak.

The chief components of this meal are still essentially core components of the traditional breakfast in much of America – outside New England, that is, where the staple breakfast diet is Dunkin’ Donuts – and in diners across the United States this same menu forms the core of the first meal of the day for millions of American citizens.

Add to this some high-quality local sausag- es, a choice of omelette, fried or scrambled eggs and a dish of French toast and you have the recipe to send your US guests off for the day happy and well-nourished.

This feature was first published in the December 2018 issue of Luxury B&B Magazine