Hash browns are ‘not part of a traditional English Breakfast’ – expert

There are many ways to make a full-English breakfast with some preferring to add mushrooms, tomatoes and beans, while others stick to a base of bacon, eggs and sausages. Hash browns are another must-have ingredient for many when cooking a fry-up, though an expert at The English Breakfast Society has claimed that they don’t “belong” on the plate.

The group of self-proclaimed experts in the heritage of the English fry-up revealed that Britons should serve bubble and squeak instead of hash browns.

While it has divided those who love the crispy potato snack, the “learned fellows” claimed that their research into the history of the British breakfast found no place for them on the plate.

And it’s not just the absence of hash browns in the traditional recipe that makes them unwanted in a modern fry-up, but also the connotations of what they mean.

According to the Society, serving the golden potato patties suggests that someone is a “cheap” and “lazy” chef.

On their website, an expert wrote that “the learned opinion” of the Society is that frozen hash browns and French fries are simply used as “a cheap breakfast plate filler”.

They elaborated that the kind of people that serve them “probably buy cheap imported bacon and sausages” while trying to pass the dish off as a “so-called English breakfast”.

Going against the tradition of cooking bubble and squeak as a fry-up addition also suggests that the person has “never heard of” the dish, which is a quintessentially British recipe.

When it comes to cooking a “common” full English breakfast, they noted that it should consist of back bacon, eggs, British sausage, baked beans, bubble and squeak, fried tomato, fried mushroom, and black pudding, with fried and toasted bread on the side.

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While the experts acknowledged that the exact ingredients may vary on a regional basis, the general rule of no hash browns still applies.

But fry-up fans were divided by the claim and took to Twitter to share their thoughts.

One person named @darren23081965 wrote: “Hash browns any day of the week wouldn’t eat a fry up without a hash brown or two or three.”

Another added: “Hash browns have a place on a fry-up. They are better than bubble and squeak and to think otherwise is the sort of mindset that lost us America in the first place.”

The English Breakfast Society responded to hash brown lovers with their own justification in favour of bubble and squeak.

They wrote: “Easy. When we grew up, we had bubble on our plates instead of hash browns, within living memory an ingredient our mothers made us with love has been replaced for a frozen then deep-fried, reconstituted potato fast food item and you expect us to accept it?”

In a separate tweet, they noted that they “love hash browns” but they “belong in McDonald’s” rather than as part of a full English.

And many agreed that they can be enjoyed in other ways, similar to fries or potato waffles.

On its website, the society stated that “hash browns are not part of a traditional English breakfast.”

They went on that if hash browns do eventually become “part of the tradition”, then even more controversial ingredients could make it onto the plate, like fish fingers or kebab meat.

Unlike the golden potato snacks, bubble and squeak is a British dish made from cooked potatoes and cabbage.

The recipe can also be made using the leftovers from a Sunday roast dinner and is usually served with eggs and bacon.

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