breakfast of champions

I’m not really a breakfast person.  I’m not sure why I find breakfasts so awful.  I associate them with a particular kind of American restaurant frequented in my childhood — a place that smells like breakfast grease and is filled with fat families eating big plates of scrambled eggs.  It’s being with so many people that early in the morning, eating so much food.  Weighing yourself down, literally and figuratively.

Plus, the thought of eating a large, greasy, egg-heavy meal first thing in the morning makes me feel slightly queasy, and sugar seems particularly repellent.  I can only eat sweet things if I have a large cup of coffee to wash that sugary slime off my teeth.  Cereal makes me have a bloodsugar crash about 2 hours after I eat it (seriously: with the shakes and lightheadedness and everything).  And slimy, cold yogurt with bits of oats in it to masticate like a horse?  I don’t think so.

Jeez, I’m sounding like a sugarfree, fat-phobic vegan here, sorry.

I’m actually very happy with things that most people find gross: oatmeal, a plain bagel, and my absolute favorite, a full Japanese breakfast with rice, miso, fish, seaweed, and pickles.  (I know, this is as disgusting to you as regular breakfasts are to me.)  A little cheese is good.  A slice of cured ham.  Even very sparingly applied homemade jam on farmer’s cheese works.

This is not to say sometimes, if I wait until lunch time or dinner, I can’t eat breakfast foods.  I quite like it when my husband makes me his special eggs on a bagel with bacon and hot sauce.  Every 3-4 years, I eat some frozen diner hash browns, that quintessential American breakfast greasy spoon staple.  And I made a frittata last week.

In fact, I’ve been eating breakfast for dinner lately, mainly in the form of very unhealthy (but high quality!) imported frozen crêpes with my brandied apricots and sour cherries poured over them like an it’s-5 o’clock-somewhere syrup.  With just a touch of cream on top that curdles in the brandy.  O yeah…

And every once in a great while, I’ll go out for brunch (as late in the day as possible, please, so I can eat breakfast first) and order eggs benedict, throwing caution completely to the wind.  There’s something nigh on revolting with that runny eggyolk flowing like lava down the egg muffin and Canadian bacon mountain into a pool of congealing Hollandaise sauce.

But so tasty!

It takes a very special mood to get me to eat unadulterated eggs, and when I do, I want them runny and with as little white as possible.  Hence, eggs benedict, with its poached egg garnish and distracting pile o’ heart attack fodder, is the perfect splurge.

So why, why, why, Café Zenon, did you serve my eggs benedict with poached eggs completely hard in the middle…not once, but twice?  I don’t return plates to the kitchen unless there is something inedible on them, and I was willing to overlook the lukewarm food once.  Even overlook it twice, because I told you I didn’t want to waste food, so just give me another, properly poached egg on top of the existing benedict.  But when one of the two poached eggs you sent out again was hard, I kind of lost it.  Never in my long, picky life have I sent back a dish twice, but this was it.  Ugh.

And while I’m complaining, Zenon, baguette french toast?  Really?  Run out of shoe soles?

Peh.  In their defense, Retrogrouch and another friend — both breakfast lovers — had good meals, and I was comped the eggs benedict by a gracious and polite server.  But it’s going to be a while before I have breakfast food again.