It was a lovely evening, last evening, was it not? A fine dinner and some dancing with some fine fellow-guests. It is cool, this early morning somewhere in the Atlantic. We have had our early morning stroll around the deck. Now, the first big decision for the day. What to have for breakfast?
S.S Arabic Saturday, April 9th 1927
Grape Fruit Compote of Figs Apples
Scotch Oatmeal Triscuits Grape-Nuts Shredded Wheat
Puffed Rice Force Corn Flakes
Fried River Sole Codfish Cakes
Minced Chicken Lamb Kidneys Maitre d’Hotel
Broiled Wiltshire Bacon Grilled Cumberland Ham
EGGS & OMELETTES
Fried. Boiled. Turned and Poached
Omelettes: Plain & Crevettes.
Potatoes Lord Byron
Roast Beef Ox tongue Bologna Sausage
Cheese: Gorgonzola, Edam & Canadian
White & Graham Rolls Toast Cottage Loaves
Sally Lunns Soda Scones
Buckwheat Griddle Cakes, Maple Syrup
Coffee Tea Cocoa Chocolate.
That meal was so good that I think we will lunch aboard SS ‘Arabic’ tomorrow.
What did you choose?
Two things intrigue me on this menu. A breakfast cereal called Force? As in ‘May the Force be with you’? A great name for a breakfast cereal. Anyone know what happened to it?
The second thing is the Potatoes Lord Byron. I think potatoes are an under-rated and under-used breakfast opportunity, and I am particularly intrigued by the name of this dish. Byron on one occasion (during one of his eating disorder episodes) disgusted his host by eschewing all the fine dishes put in front of him in favour of mashed up potatoes doused in vinegar.
There are several variations of the dish called Pommes Byron. Most start with a baked potato, and include butter, cream, and cheese – a far cry from the abomination created by Byron himself, and no doubt invented by a disgusted chef who felt that potatoes were destined for higher things.
Here is Escoffier’s recipe. It is a variation of Pommes Macaire, so I give this first.
Pommes MacaireBakes some Dutch potatoes in the oven. As soon as they are done, empty them and collect their pulp on a dish; season it with salt and pepper, and work it with a fork; adding to it, the while, 1 ½ oz butter per lb.
Spread this preparation in the form of a galette on the bottom of an omelette pan containing some very hot clarified butter, and brown it well on both sides.
Pommes de Terre Byron.Prepare the amount of Pommes Macaire, and cook in butter in a small frying pan. Dish; sprinkle copiously with cream and grated cheese, and set to glaze quickly.
Quotation for the Day.
What I say is that, if a fellow really likes potatoes, he must be a pretty decent sort of fellow.