You have heard it before that, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Break and fast, which literally means to stop fasting, has been a daily meal since the Neolithic times. During these times, people used to grow grain crops to make their version of porridge. Egyptian, Greek and Roman times ate a morning meal that consisted of beer, bread, figs, olives, salad, nuts and raisins. Some Roman soldiers ate polenta for their morning meal. That type of food was alright for the Roman Empire, pyramid builders or Greek philosophers but that breakfast in London wouldn’t sell like hotcakes.
What would fall off the shelves in minutes flat, are gorgeous, flaky, sweet and moreish pastries. Everybody loves a good sweet or savoury pastry in the morning with a fresh brew and the morning rags. It’s just a winning combination to get your day off to a good start and it’s super tasty to boot. There’s something about the smell of butter baking, caramelised sugar and the whiff of bread baking in the oven to get you out of bed on a Monday morning.
The history of pastries is very scarce and how sticky buns and cinnamon rolls became a staple of the London café breakfast scene is unknown. To be frank, no one cares how they got to breakfast status. We are just glad they are here and here to stay until your nutritionist finds out. There’s a universal understanding that before or in between working hard you need some butter and sugar. Don’t worry we have you covered with a few recipes we found that mimic your favourite pastries from a cozy café in London.
- Nutella Puffs
(Image credit: Faith Durand)
Faith Durand has got us falling off our chairs with this Nutella Puff recipe. Like as if Nutella wasn’t good enough on its own, right? She has masterly wrapped this wonderfully gooey hazelnut spread in pastry and served it to us on a platter. Literally! There’s no need to wait till the morning to eat these bad boys. Have them as an after dinner treat and whatever is extra have them for breakfast. That’s if any is left.
- Cinnamon-Date Buns
(Image credit: Penden + Munk)
The smell and taste of cinnamon gets even the grumpiest morning person in high spirits. The thought of cinnamon buns may sound cliché, but don’t underestimate these buns of aromatic glory. Any London Café owner will tell you that any pastry with cinnamon sells out in a heartbeat. Replace brown sugar with puréed dates for indulgence with a little less sin.
- Orange Sugar Danish
(Image credit: Hummingbird High)
We have a lot to thank the Danish for. Legos, Carlsberg beer or insulin don’t spring to mind. However, you can never hate a Danish person. Why? Because besides your childhood spent with Legos, the number of people saved by insulin shots, the parties which their beer inspired everybody to get on the dancefloor it’s their pastries you truly respect them for. This recipe for Orange Sugar Danish pastries will have you singing through a loudspeaker. (Yes, loudspeakers were also invented by the Danes.)
- 20 Minute Apple Turnovers
(Image credit: James Ransom)
Apples are the forbidden fruit and there’s nothing more sinful than these apple turnovers that are ready in 20 minutes. Apples are always in season, never go out of style and are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser all the time. The best part is you didn’t have to break a sweat to make these.
- Oversize Breakfast Biscuits
(Image credit: foodandwine.com)
Let’s face it not everybody has a sweet tooth. That’s why savoury pastries are there to cater for breakfast goers who want a bit of salt to their morning meal. These oversized breakfast biscuits will have you eating all morning long. There are so many variations you can eat with them. A trip to the deli before you make these is recommended. However, if you do get a sudden craving for something sweet, jam makes a wonderful condiment with these biscuits.
- Pumpkin Scones with Cinnamon Butter
(Image credit: Alex Lau)
It doesn’t have to be autumn to get into the pumpkin craze. An artsy café can get away with selling anything with pumpkin throughout the year as long as they are tasty. These aren’t good, but they certainly are terrific and will put an oomph in your steps in the mornings. Here’s how to make them.
- Strawberry-Graham Scones
(Image credit: Max Kelly)
There are days when ordinary scones won’t do. This is when a recipe for Strawberry Scones makes its move. They are so buttery with those bites of strawberry fruit. Your day can’t get better than this.
- Kouign Amann
(Image credit: thekitchn.com)
These French pastries are delicious and sophisticated you wouldn’t dream of doing them at home, or would you? If the cravings are hitting you hard, you may be tempting to whip a batch just to satisfy them. Perhaps your favourite café ran out or was just too lazy to make a batch. It will never be a problem again now that you have this recipe.
- Homemade Croissants
(Image credit: yossy arefi)
A breakfast classic that everybody can enjoy is the simple taste and texture of a well-made croissant. Many of us think that it was the French who came up with this crescent moon shaped pastry. However, it was a Polish baker who invented this pastry pièce de résistance. Eat them sweet or savoury the choice is yours. You must put in some effort, but they are well worth it.
Next time you pass by your favourite café, show a little appreciation to the baker. Now you know that a lot of blood, sweat, tears, sugar, cinnamon and butter has to go into these small delectable treats. Even though pastries are not the breakfast of champions, they do make you want to leap into your day ahead. That’s why we love them, because they put a pep in our mornings.