Ask any visitor to Ireland about their trip and you’re likely to hear about the romantic ruins, stunning scenery, and the filling Irish Breakfast they were served every morning.
Though the “Full Irish” may change a bit from place to place, you can be sure it will be filling and provide enough energy to get you through a full morning – and most of the afternoon – of sight seeing.
What is Included in a Full Irish Breakfast?
Also called a “Fry Up” or “Ulster Fry” in the North, the traditional Irish breakfast includes eggs, bacon rashers, bangers, black & white pudding, broiled tomato, fried potato or potato cake, beans, brown bread and toast (the Ulster Fry has soda bread and potato bread aka boxty) and plenty of strong black tea or coffee to wash it all down.
This meal is definitely not for the faint of heart! And, speaking from experience, it's difficult to eat multiple days in a row.
How to Make Your Own Full Irish Breakfast
I always recommend shopping locally for fresh items if you can.
Begin by searching your area for a British or Irish market or a specialist butcher.
This is where you will find bacon rashers, also called back bacon, a thicker piece of meat than American bacon; the bangers, a tube-shaped sausage; and the black and white puddings, also a sausage. Black pudding may be called blood pudding, or blood sausage.
If you don’t have a market nearby, you can order these treats online – Amazon actually has a very nice selection of Irish breakfast meats.
Includes: Irish Style Sausages, Irish Style Breakfast Bacon, Black Pudding, White Pudding, Real Irish Butter, Tea, Beans and Bread.
After gathering your necessary ingredients, you’ll want to bake a loaf or two of Irish Brown Bread. This filling bread is made with both wheat and white flour, as well as oatmeal and wheat germ.
If you have mashed potatoes on hand, I also recommend whipping up some Boxty. This potato pancake is terrific with breakfast.
Cooking Your Irish Breakfast
Cooking the perfect Irish Breakfast is really a lesson in timing. It’s best to have all your ingredients at hand.
- Begin with the items that can be kept warm in the oven: the meats.
- Fry the bacon. As Irish bacon is not as fatty as American bacon, you may need a bit of pure butter in the frying pan. Do not fry the bacon crisp, but just to a bit brown on the edges.
- Next you will fry your bangers. An alternate method of preparation is to bake them in the oven at 375° for 20-25 minutes.
- As the bangers are frying, slice the bread and place it in the oven to warm.
- Slice your puddings, about ¾” thick, and fry them next, until browned on both sides.
- If you are preparing potatoes, you have a couple options. Slice peeled, boiled potatoes and fry them in a mixture of pure butter and the meat drippings.
- If you are serving beans, put them in a pan to heat.
- Add your sliced tomato or mushrooms to the side of the pan while you are frying the potatoes.
- After the potatoes are done, it’s time to fry the eggs. Though you can serve your eggs in your favorite way, sunny side up or over medium are best for dipping the warm brown bread into the runny yolk.
- When the eggs are done, plate it all, pour a cuppa and enjoy a hearty Irish breakfast.