Article by Joanna Sarah-Freedman
There are several contentious debates within the food and drink world.
Does pineapple belong on pizza? Is a burger a sandwich? Does chocolate live in the fridge or the cupboard?
But perhaps one of the most divisive arguments has always been between Brits and Americans, and has centred around the most important meal of the day…
Yep, it might be a fully blown institution over here, but believe it or not, the Full English breakfast is actually seen as pretty disgusting over in the States.
Comprised of eggs, bacon, a grilled tomato, mushrooms, baked beans, sausage, black pudding and bread (or the far superior fried bread), a full English is best served piping hot, and dished up so generously that all the ingredients are practically falling off the plate.
What’s not to like? Well, according to our friends over the pond, quite a lot.
When confronted with pictures of both a full English and an American breakfast, here’s what US diners said about our offering:
In a bid to uncover exactly what their problem is, we decided to ask three Americans to break down their issues with the full English – and their responses were enlightening, to say the least.
Bee Stumble, 31, a student from California
Bee is the first person we speak to, and she doesn’t mince her words.
She tells Twisted she finds the idea of eating a full English first thing in the morning “nauseating”.
“The beans and tomatoes frankly disgust me,” she says. “The idea of having beans in the morning before starting the day…..it’s weird.
“Runner up is the mushrooms and runny eggs – all kinds of sins being committed on this plate.”
The ingredients in a full English aside, the biggest issue for Bee is that, in her eyes, there are far superior breakfast foods out there.
“Ok, so here’s the thing,” she says. “Waffles exist. French toast exists. I understand during the industrial revolution it made sense to eat a meal packed with that much protein, you needed it back then.
“But the average person is not a coal miner or steel worker anymore! Breakfast can be whatever you want it to be but this feels punishing and heavy.”
‘What does she eat for breakfast, then?,’ we hear you ask. Bee says she mostly opts for fruit, eggs, waffles or a croissant.
“You get it? Light things that don’t make me feel like I need a nap or some kind of pill for indigestion,” she adds.
“I can’t imagine eating ham or bacon or sausage (protein), eggs (protein), beans (protein), tomatoes (vitamins), mushrooms (vitamins), and still be awake. That’s too much.
“Course, the fact that you could dice the mushrooms and tomatoes up and put them in the eggs in an omelette and no one would say nearly as much is not lost on me.
“But beans!? Nah, that’s too far, have a pancake and sit down somewhere.”
Jordan Leonard, 24, a medical student from California
New York Medical student, Jordan agrees.
“When I first saw a full English, I was like, who is eating beans in the morning?,” he says. “I didn’t even know that they were in tomato sauce, I thought that was just the bean sauce.
“I was like, ‘why is everything so wet?’”
Jordan is also an advocate for pancakes – the typical American breakfast, as it were.
“I would order bacon, eggs, hash browns and pancakes,” he says. “Why do you guys not like pancakes? Everybody knows sweet and salty taste good together.”
And whilst Jordan’s breakfast may not be a far cry from the full English, pancakes aside, he notes one more key difference: black pudding.
“It’s strange to wake up and want to eat blood and drink coffee,” he laughs. “Like, that threw me to hell.
“I don’t even like the taste of my own blood, why would I want that first thing in the morning?”
Mikki Kendall, 46, an author from Chicago
Mikki takes the argument for the full American one step further, controversially declaring that their “meat and sweet” is essentially a “much better execution” of our humble full English brekky.
She claims our main pitfall is how stacked the plate is, protesting: “Never say another word about American portion sizes.
“A full English is enough food for two to three people and it weighs you down for hours.
“[American breakfasts] are usually lighter and easier on the stomach after a night of drinking. I’ve tried most of [a full English], and it was too much food for me”.
We think someone needs to tell our US friends that pancakes and waffles aren’t the light snack they think they are…
Ahead of her first full English experience, Mikki admits that, “most of it sounded good, but not the black pudding, or the beans”.
“The idea of a blood based sausage just sounds like a vampire and a cook had some kind of bizarre breakup and a revenge recipe was born,” she jokes, echoing Jordan’s concerns.
And as for the bubble and squeak she found plonked on her plate – a welcome addition if you ask us – she simply retorts: “There’s no reason to put cabbage in potatoes when you could just have potatoes.”
We don’t know about you, but all this talk of fry ups has got our stomachs grumbling.
Looks like we haven’t been put off the Full English just yet…