With brunch-ing out firmly off the menu for the foreseeable future, Londoners are being forced to adapt to a new life inside the home. For many, an oat-milk flat white and perfectly poached eggs served in the latest hot-spot was a morning ritual, leaving breakfast lovers bereft across the capital.
However, all is not lost! The removal of TFL from daily life means that mornings now stretch endlessly ahead of us, an abundance of time replacing travelling and commutes. What better way to spend this than pouring time and energy into making a better than average breakfast from the comfort of your kitchen?
Here are the self-isolation, DIY dishes that have made it into my morning routine:
No I don’t mean those two-minute-in-the-microwave, rolled oat sachets, I’m talking thick and chunky Scottish oats, bubbling away on the stove. Whether using creamy full-fat or nutty almond milk, this is the real-deal when it comes to porridge. Utilise easy access to the store cupboard by going BIG on toppings – frozen berries blasted in the microwave serve as a coulis, while a dollop of yogurt cuts through its tartness. A spoonful of peanut butter / nutella / jam / lemon curd wouldn’t go amiss either.
By far the superior bread and egg combination, French toast is a simple but show-stopping breakfast feast. Brioche is a must and slices should be generous – an absorbent wedge that will soak up lashings of eggy mixture. Make sure this includes a dash of vanilla and sprinkling of cinnamon to really up the flavour stakes, and don’t scrimp on the butter when frying. Drizzle in maple syrup for an even juicier bite, and dust in icing sugar for an indulgent finish. Pile toppings high, whether this be berries, banana, nutella or marscapone.
Smoothie bowls may seem an elaborate concoction when served in a trendy cafe, but can be easily recreated at home. Blitz a banana, a few berries and a splash of milk to form a fruity base, served in a bowl, before again turning to the store cupboard to get creative with toppings. A mixture of dried nuts, seeds and coconut flakes compliment fresh ingredients like kiwi and banana slices, but the possibilities really are endless. Arrange in an artistic pattern for maximum satisfaction.
Failing this, head to the local Gail’s for the comforting familiarity of its classic pastries, safe in the knowledge that, despite a global crisis, warm flakey croissants have been deemed a national necessity.