This is the second post that I’ve written, and a pattern is starting to emerge; see if you can spot it.
This morning, we woke up at 03.30, and when 06.15 rolled around, we decided that there was not point in trying to go back to sleep, so we should instead, get up and go into town for the world’s greatest breakfast: a Breakfast Bap from Keogh’s Café.
Many words have been written about the wonders of a Full Irish Breakfast, but for those of you unfamiliar, it is usually comprised of sausages, bacon, eggs and pudding. For those of you reading this in America, it’s worth pointing out that the sausages and bacon are different to what you’re familiar with, and pudding is yet another pork product – Irish breakfast is really about letting pigs know where they stand. The sausages tend to be pork, salt and pepper, with the flavour of the meat being to the fore. Irish bacon is the same part of the pig as a pork chop, but sliced thinly, and smoked. Pudding is similar to a sausage, but usually with more spices (and lard) involved.
A “bap” is a bread roll that is both taller and broader than a hamburger bun. They also tend to be more floury, more fluffy, and they absolutely must be consumed fresh. Baps are generally found in Ireland, Scotland and the north of England, where they are most commonly used as a base for a meat sandwich.
Keogh’s is a small café in the middle of Dublin. It’s (apparently) family run, and has been in the same place for the last 20 years. Their baked goods are made on-site, and their food is both delicious and reasonably priced. I have very fond memories of sitting in Keogh’s on a succession of secondary school Saturday mornings reading books and writing letters. There are few places in this world which are more deserving of the description “cosy”.
“Cosy” is an excellent description of the vibe that I’m feeling since coming back. Familiar food, familiar places, the little things that are the marks of ‘home’ – we had proper rain this morning, for a start. It’s all a little trite, but I think the permanence of the move hasn’t quite sunk in yet, and so, for now, I’m just noticing how important sandwiches are in my life.