Saturday, November 3, 2007

Simple Pleasures

the weekends are hectic for us, usually. football has dominated every week since it began in august -- the practices have ended up being every evening with games on saturday AND sunday, at times (remember, two different boys, two different teams, two different practices, two different games) -- and brandon has begun basketball, which is overlapping with the end of football a bit. his first game was yesterday afternoon. a two day pre-season tournament -- saturday and sunday. the simple pleasures of a leisurely breakfast have gone by the wayside of grab and run and all of us miss it. the languid mixing of the perfect pancake batter -- with or without berries -- fluffy ricotta pancakes or corn pancakes (which we love). some tangy, crispy waffles from our ancient waffle maker/sandwich press (it's a serious old school love with removable irons that are waffled on one side and flat on the other). and egg white scrambles with sauteed potatoes and onions, or sausage and cheese, eggs over medium and yummy toast. homemade stuffed french toast, a cup of perfect tea and just watching the morning float by for awhile... okay, i'll stop.

my point is, i love the simple pleasures of breakfast treats and morning moments. they're these little instances of exceptional "ahhh" or at least i think so. the beginning of the day, the sun rising and glowing across your life as it begins. again. can you imagine? every day, our lives start over, from the beginning and whatever you put in your mouth, into your stomach, is part of that second of rebirth. yeah, i know, how deep is she? but, i actually believe that shit. now, if only i lived it better. i suck at the breakfast thing for myself. oh, i can get as elaborate as you want with breakfast -- not to toot my own horn, but i ACED my hollandaise sauce final in cooking class and, therefore, make an AWESOME eggs benedict. i adore eggs, so i can cook really yum omelets and scrambled eggs, as well as poached, fried and, yes, boiled. let me explain why this is such a big deal. breakfast is one of the most difficult meals to prepare. so i've experienced. making perfect eggs is really difficult. perfecting the doughy-less pancake takes practice as does making the airy waffle that will hold up to all that stuff that goes on it -- berries, bananas, nuts, syrup.

i love it. i love breakfast. oh, i'm terrible about eating it at the right time, but i'm getting better. i'm happy with plain yogurt with honey drizzled on top with fruit and granola and a hot cup of perfect tea -- green with a little ginger powder, honey, a squeeze of lime. my son, nicholas, is amazingly wonderful with tea. he makes me this perfect cup of yum with nutmeg, ginger, lime, honey -- mmm. but, anyway, back to the breakfast.

this next recipe is one we've made since the kids were babies. since nicholas and brandon first got their teeth. while we didn't make it the day of brandon's first basketball game, it's one i wanted to share with you, because it's just good, fun, easy and loveable. it's a bit of a mix of french toast and eggs. it's been around FOR-EH-VER. completely. it's a comfort food and can be eaten however you want. nicholas likes to put jam on it. strawberry preserves. brandon likes to eat it folded like a sandwich. it's called many things -- TOAD IN THE HOLE, EGGY IN THE BASKET -- but, basically, it's love on a plate. everytime i make it for them, they smile a the thought. it's the perfect way to start the day and here it is:

EGGY-IN-THE-BASKET by whomever


4 pcs. very good sliced bread (whatever kind you like, but we use multi-grain and brioche)
softened butter or margerine (we tend to use not margerine, but this yogurt spread AND butter)
4 lrg eggs (we use organic eggs, but whatever trips your trigger and i'll tell you more later)

what to do:
1. cut a circular hole in the middle of your 4 slices of bread. butter both sides of the slices AND the circles with the softened butter or margerine.
2. place the buttered bread -- slices and circles -- into a large vegetable oil sprayed pan that has been heated for 30 seconds on medium-high heat. you'll probably have to do these in batches based upon the size of your pan.
3. when the bread sizzles, crack one egg in the hole of each of the pieces of bread. let it cook until the white has gone opaque and turn the bread over with a spatula, gently. it will be time to turn the circle of buttered bread over as well. it wil be golden brown.
4. cook the egg in the bread until it is the way you like it. touch it gently with the spatula and if the give is the way you prefer your eggs -- soft, medium soft, or hard -- then take the egg and bread out of the pan, place it on a plate, top with the toasted circle per bread and serve.

this makes two egg-breads per person.

this can be garnished with bacon strips, sausage, potatoes, any breakfast sides you like. it's a wonderful portable snack as well as a yummy sit down breakfast.

we love this. one of the reasons my sons like this so much is that one of their favorite movies is "V FOR VENDETTA" and it is served to EVIE twice. they didn't remember this was one of their favorite dishes from earliest childhood until they saw that. yeah, we're pretty leftist over here.

i serve this, usually, with some sausage, fruit and cottage cheese. this is a seriously hearty breakfast. and a cup o' tea. must have a cup o' tea.

then we sit, enjoy the morning, and let it wash over us in slow, easy waves as we start our lives again.

rebirth and renew.
lovely, guv'ner.

No comments: