Bacon, sausage, eggs and beans are undisputed staples in a full English breakfast – but one other ingredient has proven far more controversial.
Hash browns are now fighting to remain on the menu as the English Breakfast Society says they do not ‘belong’ in a fry up and should be replaced with bubble and squeak.
Guise Bule de Missenden, founder of the group, told The Times: ‘Somebody had to put their foot down. Otherwise we’ll find kebab meat in our English breakfast before long.
‘The hash brown – the reconstituted, tater-based fast food – was popularised by McDonald’s but somehow we now find it in our English breakfast.’
A YouGov poll in 2017 found that bacon is the most important part of a full English breakfast, with 89 per cent of English people saying it would feature on their ideal plate. Only 60 per cent thought hash browns were crucial.
The YouGov poll identified the core ingredients in a full English, with 60 per cent saying that bacon is staple to their full English breakfast. Other top ingredients include sausage (82 per cent), toast (73 per cent), beans (71 per cent), fried egg (65 per cent) and hash brown (60 per cent)
The English Breakfast Society – which is dedicated to the history and tradition of the fry up – says the fried potato does not ‘belong’
He continued: ‘We’re all about bringing back the bubble. That’s the reason we’re saying no to hash browns. Hashtag, bring back the bubble.’
The campaign group includes back bacon, eggs, British sausage, baked beans, fried tomato, fried mushrooms, black pudding, and fried and toasted bread among its common breakfast ingredients.
The society, which is dedicated to the history and tradition of the full English breakfast, wrote on Twitter that they are fighting ‘to give the people’ bubble and squeak back, which they have described as ‘a tastier, and more authentically British potato cake.’
In a separate tweet, they wrote: ‘PSA: The frozen hash brown was popularised by McDonalds.
‘Serving them to customers in your English breakfast as a lazy replacement for bubble and squeak signals your lack of respect for the tradition, your customers, and your country. Do better.’
The YouGov poll identified the core ingredients in a decent Full English, with six food items chosen by more than half of people as being essential to their ideal breakfast.
As well as bacon at 89 per cent, these include sausage (82 per cent), toast (73 per cent), beans (71 per cent), fried egg (65 per cent) and hash brown (60 per cent).
However, Britons on social media have been left divided about whether or not the hash brown truly deserves a place on the plate.
Some defended them, while others wholeheartedly agreed with the campaign.
Hash browns are an ingredient that some believe do not belong in a traditional fry-up. The English Breakfast Society says the hallmark of a real English breakfast are locally or regionally sourced ingredients
One person wrote on Twitter: ‘I’m not sure it’s that simple. The problem you can’t ignore is that frozen hash browns, when cooked properly, are delicious and a perfect accompaniment. Most cafes will offer hash browns these days. Are they really a no?’
A second said: ‘I’m English and I like hash browns and hate bubble and squeak. There, I’ve said it. Out and proud!’
And a third wrote: ‘There are those of us who really don’t like bubble and squeak but do like a hash brown in any form. Frozen ones straight into the air fryer, job done. Can be used as a bean-break too for the ramekin deniers out there.’
While another defended bubble and squeak, saying: ‘Very true! Bubble and squeak should always appear as an option on an English breakfast menu.’
Another said they disliked the hash brown, writing: ‘A crime against the cooked breakfast.’
Another person was left totally confused as to why hash browns are even an option, writing: ‘What’s weird is if you order hash browns at a restaurant in America you would never get one of these. You would get real diced potatoes.’
The English breakfast dates back to the 14th or 15th century as the Landed Gentry would eat their grand hunt breakfasts. It was then adopted by the middle and upper class Victorians, according to the English Breakfast Society.
Variations exist across the country, with different ingredients making up the staple breakfast.
Hash browns however are an ingredient that many believe do not belong in a traditional fry-up. The English Breakfast Society says the hallmark of a real English breakfast is locally or regionally sourced ingredients.
Hash browns first started appearing on breakfast menus in New York City in the 1890s, and were later adapted into the UK breakfast.