Keen to spoil the old man with a first-rate breakfast? Skip the chia seeds and break out the roasted vine tomatoes and black pudding for a sophisticated mixed grill that says ‘Thanks for everything, Dad’.
There seems to be something about becoming a father that magically makes men love a terrible joke (aka a ‘Dad joke’) and a big breakfast. Eggs, bacon, sausages, black pudding, hash brown, tomato, possibly some livers or kidney, possibly some baked beans: this is classic Dad Food for the ages.
We asked chef and dad Luke Adams from Laffare Melrose for some tips on how to whip up the ultimate Dad-friendly breakfast, with a few elaborate-looking but easy-to-achieve chef-y touches.
“There are some awesome, thick-cut, half-smoked specialist bacons around (which would make a great present). Fry streaky bacon over a medium heat until the fat cooks out of it and it starts to crisp up. You basically want the bacon to cook in its own fat. Too hot and it’ll burn, too cold and it’ll stew.”
“There’s so much fat in the rest of the meal, that a poached egg is the best way to go. Add 2-3 Tbsp of vinegar to a pot of simmering water, and crack your egg in gently. The deeper the water and the fresher the egg, the better.”
“Blister vine-ripened tomatoes. You can get Campari tomatoes on the vine (the ones the size of a pingpong ball) at the supermarket. Leave them on the vine, sprinkle them with salt, pepper and olive oil, and cook them on a high heat (around 210 degrees) in the oven, until they’re blackened. The outside is cooked but the inside is still juicy, so when you cut it open, you have a nice, clean, fresh juice that goes everywhere.”
“It’s really tasty, especially with a blackened tomato. I could eat that all day. A lot of specialist butchers here are making or importing them, and they’re perfect. Cut them into 1.5cm-thick rounds, peel the skin off the outside, then fry in a neutral oil like canola, soy or rice bran oil, and a little bit of butter, until crispy on both sides. It goes quite black when you’re frying it, so don’t assume it’s burnt, unless it smells burnt.”
“Get a medium sized potato and grate it on the small side of the grater so it comes out like little matchsticks. Then wash it under running water in a sieve. In a tea towel, squeeze all the water out of it until the potato appears to be dry. In a bowl, mix it with 2 Tbsp melted butter, salt and pepper, then spread it into a centimetre-thick layer covering the bottom of a frying pan, and fry it on a medium heat. Flip it once it’s golden on the underside, cook both sides, then drain it on a paper towel. It will be the size of a dinner plate. You’ll have a thin, crispy potato rosti hash brown without having to bake the whole thing.”
“Oyster mushrooms are readily available at supermarkets and Asian food stores, and they have a really strong, earthy flavour compared to button or portobello. Drizzle them in olive oil, salt and pepper, and bake them at 180 degrees for 10 minutes or until crispy on the outside and cooked in the middle.”
“If your dad’s a big dog, add a slice of sourdough toast from any artisan baker to mop up the yolk and juices. The average guy’s probably going to be more into a white bread than a grain bread on his one Father’s Day of the year, and sourdough’s probably the best of a bad situation.”