Every English man and woman I know loves a bacon and egg sandwich. Synonymous in the UK with the hangover, but while the combination of perfect porcine goodness, rich glossy egg, and doughy carbs is undoubtedly a useful weapon for overcoming a night of New Year’s excess, it would be a crying shame to only use it for that purpose. Made right, the bacon and egg sandwich is a sublime affair in its own right. The key to making a great bacon and egg sandwich is simplicity. If the essentials – bread, bacon, fried egg – are of sufficiently high quality, why complicate matters with extra ingredients? Sliced tomato I can just about accept, but not lettuce, not at breakfast. Avocado should never make an appearance, and the texture of cheese just doesn’t work alongside a soft yolk. I’ve scoured Beijing for the best breakfast sandwich and here are three of the most egg-cellent I’ve found.
Element Fresh Breakfast Sandwich RMB 42
Two fried eggs with bacon, swiss cheese, and sliced tomato (both optional) on toasted challah bread. Challah bread is a wonderful thing, made with lots of eggs and a little sugar. When it’s toasted, the outside is wonderfully crisp, but with a soft and fluffy texture remaining inside. The bacon at Element Fresh is cooked very crispy and the egg is cooked to perfection. This scores top marks, and is served alongside a small dish of fruit, to ease your conscience a little.
Jamaica Blue Bacon and Egg Sandwich RMB 30
Fried egg, bacon, and optional cheese, served toasted in ciabatta bread with BBQ sauce. The sauce is quite sweet, so you can ask to have it on the side. The bread is light and chewy, as good ciabatta should be, and lightly toasted. The bacon is less crispy, but there’s lots of it. The egg could be a little runnier, but otherwise this is a very good breakfast sandwich. Served with a small well-dressed salad, which is more than just a garnish.
Daily 9am-6pm. Beijing Riviera Clubhouse, 1 Xiang Jiang Beilu, Chaoyang District (8450 6596) 朝阳区香江北路1号香江乡村俱乐部店
Kiwi Café & Cellar Breakfast English Muffin RMB 39
Crispy bacon, fried egg, and hash brown, finished off with homemade tomato relish. The relish is absolutely delicious, with contrasting flavors of sharp and sweet. The bacon is of good quality and cooked crisp, the egg lovely and soft. The hash brown is best eaten separately, with the relish, the perfect combination. The lovely doughy muffin is lightly toasted, making this a very good breakfast option indeed.
Kiwi Café & Cellar
Daily 7am-8pm, opening times may vary during the winter. Citee Golf Performance Centre, 1 Xiang Jiang Beilu, Chaoyang District (8430 8226, firstname.lastname@example.org) www.citeegolf.com
beijingkids Shunyi Correspondent Sally Wilson moved to Beijing in 2010 from the UK with her husband and son. Her daughter was born here in 2011 and both her kids keep her happily busy. In her spare time, Sally loves to stroll through Beijing’s hutongs and parks. She is a (most of the time) keen runner and loves reading: books, magazines, news, and celeb websites – anything really. Sally is also a bit of a foodie and loves trying out new restaurants.
Photos: Sally Wilson