Beans and Egg on Toast – the Bear’s favourite homecoming meal.

The Bear travels a lot.

All over the world. And wherever he travels  he eats. He has a great time sampling different foods and styles of cooking but whenever he gets back from his travels he always asks for one thing in particular. I would and could cook him anything at all, no matter how involved or time consuming, because I am so pleased that he is home again….. and all he ever wants is his favourite.

I think it happens to us all when you have been away from home for too long. All you want is something that is inextricably tied to memories of home, something that can only be made at home… you’d never be able to get a restaurant to make it for you. They could try but they’d never get it right. Restaurants are fine… they are great in some cases but eating out every night? After a while you need something simple. Once when I had been travelling round the south of India for weeks, eating the most delicious food and learning to make dal, I was preparing to come home and all I could think about was my mother’s cooking.  In an internet cafe in Bangalore (this was only a few years ago but BlackBerry’s weren’t on the market yet) I emailed work and asked the lovely Lolly to phone my Mum and tell her I was on my way back and to please make fish pie for my homecoming! And when I eventually got back, there it was, delicious and perfect and exactly what I needed after so long away.

Homecoming food should be comfort food. It should make you feel surrounded with love. It shouldn’t be – it can’t be – challenging, it has to be familiar.

So that’s what he gets.

And what is it? It’s beans on toast with a fried egg. But, like the advert says, it’s not just ANY beans on toast with a fried egg… it’s the Bear’s Beans on toast with a fried egg!

There are specific ingredients, though, that make this special. It wouldn’t be the same if I used supermarket bread, no matter what premium range it came from. It wouldn’t be the same if I used any old beans and just plonked them on the toast. And it certainly wouldn’t be the same if I used ordinary eggs and just fried them any old way.

The bread has to be made by me and it has to be No-Knead Bread because that not only tastes good but it has the perfect texture. It doesn’t dissolve when you pour the beans over it. Go and follow that link for a step by step look at making it. I have to start it the day before I need it but that’s good, when I start the bread I know my Bear will be home soon.

Those eggs? They are the gorgeous free range eggs from our local farm shop. Free range makes such a difference and the quality of their eggs reflects this. They are large with golden yolks and taste simply delicious.

And the beans? Well, they just HAVE to be Heinz.

So far so good.

And now to start it. The thing about beans is that they can – even the best of them – be a bit watery. We don’t like that. We like them heated gently and slowly till they become rich and thick.

….. and with a knob of butter added to them to make them taste even better.

The bread has to be cut thick, but not too thick and toasted

…..before being spread with salted Normandy butter

…. and piled high with beans. See how thick they are? How tasty they are too…..

The eggs are cooked in oil with some chilli oil poured in (ohhhh… how good that makes the eggs taste. Just a bit of a bite to them!)

And then you put the eggs on top.

It really is delicious. The yolk spills out and mixes with the beans and the toast mops up all the delicious dribbles.

It still needs just one extra thing though for the ultimate, homecoming comfort food….Heinz tomato sauce……

And that’s why you can’t get that in a restaurant. 

There are so many specifics and the biggest of them all is that the cook has to make a tomato sauce heart over the top.

Perfect homecoming food that says welcome back and come on in, you’ve been missed.

10 thoughts on “Beans and Egg on Toast – the Bear’s favourite homecoming meal.”

  1. Awww this is so cute 🙂

    My comfort meal that I couldn’t get in a restaurant is 2 x lorne sausage, a pile of buttery mash and some beans. And yes, you’re right, it just HAS to be Heinz!

    Welcome home to your Bear 🙂

  2. darling, I think the time has come for you to write a book. I love the descriptions of all your recipes, and the stories behind them. I think that you are our new Nigella…

    I love you missus xxx

  3. Awww Loll… do you remember ringing my Mum? I was sat in a back street internet cafe with dodgy blokes accessing goodness knows what!(!!) all around me and I knew if I emailed you, woul would sort it out.
    I love you too!

    And Catherine…. yes, the best food is simple food, made with love and no restaurant can manage to make it just like you can! You ask them for sausage and mash.. they wouldn’t know what lorne sausage is! They wouldn’t get your mash as buttery as you like it!

    Comfort food is the best food!

  4. wat a romantic toast, apart from home food, what i miss is my bed and pillow, after i come home would just crawl into like little baby 😛
    Glad that you had a good time in south India, next time you visit India, do let me know, as am from south India, and ur most welcome to my home, my mum looks super yum food 😀

  5. Ananda: We are planning to visit South India and take a train journey. It’s how I travelled round the southern states… but the Bear and I want to have a few days on one of those luxury trains, you know those fantastically elegant antique trains? If you are back in India it would be lovely to meet with you if we pulled into a station nearby!

  6. Devaki: Home food always strikes a chord with people doesn’t it? And it is the personal tweaks that make it special… this just wouldn’t work if there was no knob of butter in the beans or if they weren’t cooked down… the hint of chilli oil to add a warming bite to the eggs and that lovely bread…all of it add up to each bite being LOVELY!

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