People always say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. As it turns out, it can also be the weirdest. Though many of us are content with a bowl of cornflakes and a glass of orange juice, there are some early morning staples that require a considerably stronger stomach. Say goodbye to toast and tea - here are the weirdest breakfast traditions from around the world.
Eggs and porridge are both morning classics in their own right. Together, they might be a little eccentric but still acceptable. When the egg in question has been left to rot for several months, breakfast becomes an entirely different ball game. Century eggs and congee, a type of savoury rice porridge eaten across South East Asia, are considered a delicacy in China and Hong Kong. The eggs themselves are soaked and buried underground, left to ferment and take on their signature dark green hue and ominous smell. Certainly an acquired taste.
Anyone from Great Britain will be quick to claim that our breakfasts are the best on the planet. Sausages, beans, bread and bacon - what’s not to like? For some, however, there’s one ingredients that tips the balance from awesome to awful. Black pudding is a delightful combination of blood, oatmeal and fat that has been served in the British Isles for centuries. Despite being delicious, its grisly ingredients list can prove too much for some.
As you might expect from the nation that gave us Oktoberfest, Germany has given some serious thought to hangover food. Surprisingly, the best that they could come up with still leaves a lot to be desired. Katerfruhstuck (a word which traditionally refers to anything eaten after a heavy night out) usually consists of a gherkin and a raw onion wrapped in a fillet of pickled herring. Salty and seriously sour, this is one mouthful guaranteed to wake you. We’d rather stick with bacon.
Though sushi, ramen and katsu are undoubtedly among the most delicious things on the planet, most people don’t crave them first thing in the morning. However, after hearing the alternative, you may change your mind. Considered an early morning delicacy, natto is a traditional dish featuring fermented soy beans. Famed for its pungent smell and slimy texture, this is not a meal for the faint of heart.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a more divisive condiment than Marmite. The brown, viscous yeast extract has been splitting families for decades, with some avoiding it like the plague and others spreading it on everything. What all Marmite lovers around the world can agree on, however, is that it is demonstrably better than its Australian cousin - the insipid Vegemite. Yet, despite all the evidence to the contrary, Vegemite continues to form the cornerstone of any self respecting Australian breakfast. Why they eat it we may never know.
6. The Netherlands
Of course, it’s perfectly possible for breakfast to be really weird and absolutely awesome. No nation proves this quite like the Dutch. Hagelslag is the ultimate decadent morning snack that acts as a halfway house between birthday cake and nutella toast. A slice of plain white bread is buttered on both sides, before being covered in chocolate sprinkles and served cold to very happy diners. It might not have the health benefits of granola and berries, but it’s a whole lot more exciting.
As the first thing we eat when we wake up, breakfast has the power to affect our mood for the rest of the day. A bad breakfast can ruin even the most promising of moods. Though there are certainly a few options that will a few eyebrows, this list also proves that if you push the boat out you can also get lucky. You never know when you might strike breakfast gold.