Are you a morning lark, or a night owl? Do you function best in the morning without the aid of caffeine or do you envy the ones who can? Believe it or not, our circadian clock might have something to do with our genes. Some studies (read up here and here) have even suggested the nocturnal people are more intelligent, although I’ll probably take that piece of information with a grain of salt and wait for more solid evidence. But I do believe that some of us were born to be night owls. If you are interested in further reading, check here, and here.
When I was in University, or working full time, the worst thing was having to wake up early. Generally it takes a couple of snoozes, a shower, a couple of shots of strong coffee for me to be remotely functional. Needless to say when holidays or annual leave came, my body automatically reverted to my most comfortable sleeping hours: 4am until Midday (sometimes earlier, of course). I didn’t mind working night shifts, but my only complaint is that it was a lonely job, having to cover the whole department/ward on my own.
Now that I’m freelancing, I keep to my night owl routine. I still sleep 8 hours a day like everyone else, and I find myself functioning better this way. My mind’s at its optimum level around evening time. That’s when I brainstorm, write and create. I generally schedule meetings and rehearsals in the afternoons or evenings. On the rare occasion I do wake up for morning events, expect sunglasses and coffee cup gelled to my hand. Hehe.
Well, this brings us to the issue of breakfast. Naturally, my first meal of the day would be around 12 Noon-2pm. It also means that I essentially combine my breakfast and lunch. That’s why I have such a fondness for egg-based brunch dishes, especially poached eggs and baked eggs. You can check out some of my brunch recipes here too.
I like to be creative with my brunch and try out different combinations of ingredients. The other day, I went a little crazy and made this East Meets West concoction. Having just cooked Nasi Lemak the day before, I had plenty of sambal leftover so I thought why not make a Nasi Lemak inspired brunch dish?
This dish sounded so wrong, yet tasted so right! I don’t even know what to call it, but I love the different textures and flavours mingling on my tongue. By the way you did see “Purple Carrot Cake”. My mother made this with the purple carrots from Australia, courtesy of my sister. I have also made my own version and will post the recipe next (and link back to this post). I’ve ran out of cling wrap, which was a blessing in disguise because I finally had no excuse but to poach my egg the traditional way. Lo and behold, it turned out perfect!
To build this dish, here are the different components I’ve used:
Poached egg – Bring a pot of water to boil. Add a small splash of white vinegar, and gently stir the water into a whirlpool. Crack the egg into a ramekin or a cup, and drop the egg into the centre. At this point slowly stir the water to manipulate the flow if needed as this will shape the egg white. You’ll know it’s done when all the egg white has turned opaque, generally no more than 2-3 minutes, depending on the size of the egg. Remove the egg with slotted spoon and serve immdiately. If you have to set it aside, you’ll need to cool it down so it doesn’t continue to cook, then reheat as needed.
Note that you’ll have to use very fresh egg or it won’t form nicely.
Pan Fried Purple Carrot Cake recipe (You can substitute with toast, potato rosti, or even Quinoa cakes!)
Smashed Avocado recipe
Homemade Vegetarian Sambal recipe
Roasted Tomato – Cut tomatoes in halves, sprinkle with chopped basil, salt, pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Roast in 170C oven for 20 minutes or so depending on what doneness you prefer.
Bacon – To achieve perfect crunch, best thing to do is cook bacon in the oven. I just threw them in with the tomato halves.
Cucumber – simply slice cucumber thinly and set aside until ready for serving.
Once everything’s done, just assemble and try to plate it neatly. And what’s the first thing I did? Apart from taking pictures of course.
Break the egg yolk!
You can come closer. It won’t bite.
So that was my weird and wonderful brunch. Admittedly most days I keep it simple and not quite as crazy, but it’s nice to pamper myself once in a while.
What did you have for breakfast/brunch today?
28 Comments Add yours
I am nocturnal too. It kills me to wake up before the sun is hot.
In Uni, i sleep like u do, LOL. If there’s an 8am class, I wake up brush my teeth, lgihtly wash my face, eyes half opened go to class, come back an hour later and zzzzzzzzzzzzz again til noon.
During exam period, I sleep at 8am, wake up 5pm. I can’t study when the sun is up, it just can’t go in. And I love to drive at night, doesn’t matter if it’s 2 or 3am all the way back to Pahang last time.
My brain loves to work when it’s past midnight, LOL.
Hahahahahha I hardly ever went to the 8am it’s torture! As for studying, yes, It’s better at night for me and no point trying in the morning or afternoon. Oh yeah I love driving at night too! We are the same kind.
It’s not that i want those 8am classes, I hate them but I have no choice. Only 1 slot per semester for that paper and all the lectures from that faculty are in the morning, and afternoons are lab/field sessions.
There are even 7am classes and I never attend them, i just go MIA if the lecturer doesn’t take attendance.
Whenever it’s school days for my girls, waking up at 7.30am is torture, have to drag myself out of bed and feel sooooo tired after that. 9am will be a lot better when the sun is really bright, doesn’t matter what time I sleep. but my kids’ batteries are on full when the sun is out, so, even if it’s school holidays now, I can’t get past 10am. They’ll play in my room while I still hug my bolster. Bad mommy, LOL
LOL! Yeah… we had no choice over Uni schedules but I think most people would be MIA for 7am and 8am classes. I don’t blame you for sleeping in during school holidays hehehehe. I’m sure your girls understand you work very hard for them too.
the flowing yolk is ooh lala! yeah it look like a weird combination but heck cares as long as they tasted nice!
Hahaha yeah. If I were to change anything I’d probably get rid of the bacon as the carrot cake already contains minced pork. 😛
Nocturnal for sure but can wake up early if necessary 😀 Yolkporn indeed ! lol Your brunch looks terrific 😀
Hehehehe glad to know fellow nocturnal creatures. 😛
i’m a night owl too! if i left it to my circadian rhythm, i think my sleeping hours would be 430am-1230pm. but i’d happily wake up an hour or two early to try this very creative recipe of yours. it’s a sight for sore eyes, and it sounds so much more fulfilling than the ordinary brunch dishes that most cafes in our city serve 😀
Hurray fellow night owl, there’s no need to wake up early for my brunches. Sometimes I have it as late as 4pm lol! If I ever have a restaurant of my own, brunch will be served all day (til 5) with plenty of interesting choices. 😀
I am a night owl too so I never get up in time for breakfast but love breakfast food at night! 😛
We love breakfast food anytime but breakfast time 😛 BTW you are still up at 4.24am? hehehehe
Hahaha I crave poached eggs and bacon every day, all that fat and salty bacon beats my daily oat porridge or breakfast cereal hands down!
I can’t actually have bacon everyday. But eggs, no problems!
I’m a morning person…my missus is a night owl. That’s why I cook breakfast a lot.. Hmmmm…wish I could have that egg for breakfast! Yum! Yum! Bacon? Did somebody say bacon? Oooooooo……heaven!!!
I cook breakfast but don’t have it at breakfast time. hehehe
i love all of it except the smashed avocado. i can’t accept the taste. =S
Really? I love avocados! 😀 Especially when mixed with lemon juice and feta cheese!
Drools… what a gorgeous breakfast… and who says we can’t enjoy an English breakfast with a twist of sambal?? 😉
Used to be night owl but I guess I m getting old… lol… its really hard to keep awake till late at times and I find myself dozing off at my laptop.. 😀
Hehehe it’s already a fusion brunch dish. 😀 Sometimes I do wish I could sleep early though but if I try, I’ll just lie there restlessly.
I am a night owl too. My brain works well at night..heehee But now with kids I hardly can stay up late cos need to wake up really early like 5.30am on their school day.
I love your brunch set. Especially the pouch egg and purple sweet potatoes cake. Looks yum!
Have a wonderful week ahead.
Actually that was a purple Carrot cake, not sweet potato. Will post up the recipe later today. 😀 Good to know so many fellow night owls!
aiyoh that looks so good i want it now!
😛 It’s actually not difficult to make it yourself!
This is very creative and looks healthy too. I am a night owl too, but have to force myself to sleep earlier cos my kids wake up really early!
Night owls unite! Hehehe, it wasn’t that healthy really because of the bacon 😛 Once in a while it’s oklah I guess.