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The Case of the Mysterious Vanishing Breakfast Slices

I already posted about this on Yelp London, but I haven't had much response. THis is baffling me. Does anyone remember "breakfast slices"? I call it poor man's bacon because it came in similar packages in the chilled section of the supermarket. It was just long strips of salty chopped and shaped meat (a bit like spam but it got crispier, and a distinctively different flavour). Anyway, as far as I remember it was fairly horrid, but it was alright every once in a while. Weird thing is, I haven's seen it since I was a kid. Even a google search yields nothing. Anyone remember this product or did I imagine it?

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  1. I remember it, but I don't remember it looking like spam or being in long thin strips. The stuff I've eaten looked a bit like a thin slice of coarse pate. I can't remember where I had it either - I think it may have been either in Ireland or cooked in England by Irish friends - which is wierd, as it looks like it's a Scottish thing - I googled it (on UK pages only) and this came up:


    Then I googled the other names it's got - Lorne sausage and square sausage - and there is plenty on the web - even wikipedia!


    I'm not sure that this is the same thing you're talking about though.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Theresa

      I've seen this thin sliced pate-ish stuff in my local Sainsbury, in recent times and in amongst the cooked meats. Described, I think, as "breakfast sausage".

      Not the sort of thing I want to put in my mouth first thing in the morning.

      1. re: Harters

        I remember liking it - it's not far off being just a sausage, but in a different shape. I swear there was also something similar called Ulster Fry, or Belfast Fry, or something like that, but Ulster Fry just seems to be the name for a full breakfast in Northern Ireland!

        1. re: Theresa

          Think you've also gotta have white pudding & fried farl to make it a full brekkie in "Norn Iron" :-)

      2. re: Theresa

        No, it's not the same thing as square sausage - I've had that too. It didn't look or taste like Spam, but it just had a similar level of processed-ness. Definitely more like reconstituted bacon than sausage, in both flavour and texture. Thanks for the research though!

        1. re: berbadeerface

          I remember them well. They were discontinued and then brought back for a while due to customer demand (though this was years ago). I think they were seen as a budget alternative to bacon. They weren't really like a sausage - more like a flat shaped bacon rasher and slightly spicy flavour - and yes highly processed. Think about them on and off - and wish they could be reintroduced.

      3. I remember them well. They were discontinued and then brought back for a while due to customer demand (though this was years ago). I think they were seen as a budget alternative to bacon. They weren't really like a sausage - more like a flat shaped bacon rasher and slightly spicy flavour - and yes highly processed. Think about them on and off - and wish they could be reintroduced. .

        1. I was watching Family Guy last night and saw them make a sandwich with some unidentifable red meat and it triggered a memory of my dad cooking "Ulster Fry" for me. This sounds very much like what you are describing and somebody else has described something similar here. Sort of like spam but very red and it would crisp with a totally unique flavour, I can honestly say I haven't tasted anything like it in twenty-five years. Have you had any luck finding any of your "breakfast slices"?

          2 Replies
          1. re: foodblob

            Whenever up up in Merseyside I have breakfast at a little greasy spoon called Reushie in West Derby Village where you get Ulster fry with your full English. I wish I could get it down south; it may be mystery meat but it's crazy-tasty.

          2. I remember them with great affection. Long, thin, parallel slices with sort-of half tapered/ half rounded-off ends. Packed exactly like bacon. Looked like thin spam. Contained Beef and Pork I think - and occasionally little hard, bony pieces if you were unlucky.

            They had a delicious spicy, 'smoky' flavour and a lovely crispy texture when cooked - an unbeatable combination but probably immensely bad for you. They used to stop stocking them at Christmas but I couldn't believe it when they finally stopped doing them altogether! Fond memories

            1 Reply
            1. re: slicehound

              Try Breakfast Slices (Pork 50%, Bacon 29%)
              Grampian Country Pork (Cookstown Meats). 70 Molesworth Road. Cookstown. N Ireland. Uk BT80 8PJ
              028 8676 3321

            2. I remember them too in Canada. It WAS kind of nasty horrid and my parents only bought it when they were short of money or something. It was vaguely bacon slice-shaped, pinkish coloured, and did not change its size or shape much when fried. It was only edible covered in egg yolk or with forkfuls of scrambled egg.

              1. I have managed to track this down in Birkenhead market. The supplier has now been introduced to my local stalls in bolton. Bolton market now sells. Check out the ulster fry community page on facebook


                1. I remember them well back in the 1950s and 60s. It was called Ulster Fry and they were long narrow strips of salami type meat which you actually fried like bacon. found this discussion group when Hairy Bikers on BBC were talking about Ulster Fry being a big fried breakfast


                  4 Replies
                  1. re: jreyno

                    Responding to an old post, but I've always understood that the Ulster Fry was the local equivalent of the Full English.

                    1. re: Harters

                      No it was definitely a thin red strip of spam like meat which was fried for breakfast. Someone said was it square sausage but not that is something very different. Interesting to read the other comments

                      1. re: jreyno

                        Interesting. Google generally only refers to the full breakfast. There is, however, one mention of it as a product - on this Facebook page, which seems to relate to a stall on Bolton market - funnily enough the page is named as "Ulster Fry (sliced meat)" - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ulster...

                        The square sausage will be Lorne sausage which is Scottish in origin but probably turns up on some versions of the Ulster Fry (breakfast)

                        1. re: Harters

                          It's both. In Liverpool I believe it was a local speciality like a spam sliced off a block and fried. But in Northern Ireland it is a full fried breakfast with bacon, egg, sausage, soda bread, white and black pudding etc etc. There is even a Belfast Telegraph piece on where to get the best Ulster Fry in the city.

                          Not certain why people find it difficult to buy - you can get the meat mail order from this Scottish butcher: http://www.mogerleys.com/products.html

                  2. i do remem them my wife and i thought thay were scummy i have asked sainsburys for the recipe as i feel sure theres a market for them wish thay were under the grill now

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: 9262anthonyh

                      I didn't like it much and now I am largely vegetarian but will look out for it in Sainsburys

                    2. I remember them. We used to buy them when we were low on money. It was a bacon slice shaped and didnt change much of its shape when fried. I remember they were discontinued years ago.

                      1. If you look in Maynard Davies book, "Manual of a traditional bacon curer" you will find an old fashioned recipe for your breakfast slice and its not too difficult to make if you fancy having a go.

                        1. My god. Thankyou youririshshop....these are the ones. Exactly as I remember...!!!

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: slicehound

                            were did you get nthem i did go to liver pool and get irish ulster fry thats the same only the slices are large were did you get yours in irland

                            1. re: 9262anthonyh

                              It was someone else who got it. I didn't actually like the it but a Scottish friend and I (much to the amusement of our spouses) had a great time reminiscing about the stuff

                              1. re: 9262anthonyh

                                You can get them from youririshshop website

                              2. re: slicehound

                                Do they taste the same as you remember? £30 minimum order value from youririshshop. Desperately want them if they taste the same. So, do they?

                              3. ulster fry is the nearest thing i went to liverpool to get it

                                1. I remember them in the early 80 s they were the poor mans bacon but we used to buy them in sainsburys most weeks where did they go did the fat doctors get rid of them in the Bermuda Triangle .i maybe sad to remember such a stupid thing but that was what we grew up with not a xbox or play station