TASTE
02/21/2012 04:40 pm ET Updated Aug 31, 2012

International Breakfast: Morning Meals Around The Globe

As much as some of us love breakfast, the daily offerings can get old after a while. Honestly -- there are only so many ways you can prepare eggs and pancakes. If you've found yourself with a listless morning appetite, it may be time to take your first meal of the day abroad.

The video above features congee with century egg, a traditional Chinese breakfast. Congee, rice porridge, is popular in many Asian countries. While some of us think of rice only as an after-noon food item, in many parts of the world it's an important part of every meal. Congee is a simple dish of rice and water that has been cooked down until the rice loses its shape. It's then enhanced with a variety of ingredients such as stock, chicken, meat or eggs (most likely century egg which is an egg that has been preserved in a mixture of clay, ash, salt, lime and rice hulls for several weeks to months.)

If you're not feeling like rice so early in the morning, maybe a bit of spice will satisfy your need for something new. In Southern India, one typical breakfast fare is Masala Dosa. It's a thin pancake filled with a spicy potato mixture. And if you want to make it a balanced meal, add a bit of yogurt for your dairy needs -- and to soothe the heat from the potatoes.

Looking for something truly filling to get you through the rest your day? The full breakfast served in the Irish province of Ulster will surely hit the spot. This weekend morning meal, known as the Ulster Fry, comes with Irish bacon, eggs, sausages, a vegetable roll, black pudding or white pudding, fried tomato, soda bread and potato bread. Hearty doesn't even begin to describe this breakfast.

If you prefer a more vegetarian friendly option, then the traditional Egyptian Ful may be just what you need. Ful is made from greenish-brown Egyptian fava beans, which are boiled and mashed to make a paste; it's always served with flat bread and sometimes with hard-boiled eggs and pickled vegetables. Traditionally, the main staple of the breakfast is the Egyptian flat bread, and the ful is used just to provide a bit of protein to this carb-heavy meal.

If you have a sweet tooth and find yourself searching for excuses to eat cake for breakfast, then look no further. Ontbijtkoek, which literally translates to breakfast cake, is a Dutch breakfast staple. Rye is the most important ingredient of the cake, which gives it a deep brown color -- though most recipes now swap the rye for wheat flours. Similar to a gingerbread cake, ontbijtkoek is spiced with cloves, cinnamon, ginger, candied citrus peel and nutmeg. When served at breakfast, it's prepared simple, with just a slather of butter -- which is really all it needs.

What is your favorite international breakfast meal? Leave a comment below!

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