Once in a while memories of the past overwhelm you, and you revert to behaviors which probably should be long gone. It is as if you need to refresh those memories with current sensory input. Well at least that's what I'm using for justification this Saturday morning.
I can't remember exactly when Saturday morning breakfast became important. But if you're living in a world of five days at work and Sunday at church, Saturday is about the only time you have to spend the time creating that special breakfast which is often a very personal thing.
We can argue the ingredients, but if there one thing around which to build an extraordinary breakfast, it has to be bacon. Bacon is one those foods that no one has tried to redeem from its status a culinary no-no because of health reasons. Cattlemen tell us that "Beef is what's for dinner," and egg producers extol the virtues of eggs, but no one has come to the defense of bacon. My dad, who lived to be 99, loved bacon. Perhaps it was the fact this past week marked 131 years since he was born the led me to the supermarket meat counter yesterday at Ridgewood Farms Kroger which is pictured in the parking lot shot.
Perhaps I need to frame my decision to have a Saturday morning breakfast with a food that rarely if ever makes it into my daily breakfast. I'm framing my decision because of the article that I read this morning, "The Marketplace of Perceptions."
"... in 1979, psychologists Daniel Kahneman, LL.D. ...and Amos Tversky.... published “Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk,”
...The authors argued that the ways in which alternatives are framed—not simply their relative value—heavily influence the decisions people make."
Before I bought the bacon I had just been out on what had turned out to be a less than satisfactory trip. My shoes which were dropped off for repair on January 25 were still unfinished nearly a month later. While I was out trying to retrieve my shoes, I decided I was thirsty and happened to be close to Deb's Frozen Lemonade Stand. I drove down only to find they were closed until April.
I then decided that if I couldn't have lemonade maybe I would try for Apple Cider so I heated off to Jamison's Orchard & Produce only to find out that they only carry the delicious Pennsylvania cider through Christmas. Feeling like I needed to buy something since it was close to closing time, I spied a loaf of Boone's Mill Bread which is my kids favorite breakfast toast. Since we were almost out of bread, I bought it and headed to Kroger to finish my errands. Little did I know that all this was to lead me to bacon.
There are some important things to know about bacon. First if you aren't a person of focus and patience don't try to cook bacon. Second if you're going to throw caution to the winds and cook bacon, buy good bacon. I go back and forth over time on bacon, but over the years, Hormel Black Label bacon is about as reliable as it gets. I always try to pick slices that are straight without lots of curves.
I cook my bacon over medium heat, I turn it often, and I focus my attention on it completely. I think fisherman, like myself, who are patient and focused no matter what is going on around them, are the perfect character types to become exceptional bacon chefs. Once I have placed the perfectly cooked bacon onto paper towels to soak up a little of the grease, I turn my attention to the rest of meal.
For me that means eggs. And of course I can refer you to one of my most read posts, "The Dippy Egg," for details on egg cooking in our family. Suffice it to say that I cook my eggs gently in a light spray of Mazola Pure. I like them over easy. The key to a great egg is you have to start with a great egg. In our area, I've found the most reliable great eggs to be ones from Malu Aina Farms in Ferrum. I define great eggs as as ones with a rich dark orange yolk and a white that doesn't run all over the pan. After all if you live by Egg Beaters most of the time, your egg indulgence should be a memorable one.
As you can see from the picture of the inside of the carton, they come with a nice color picture and a comment about the chickens. The eggs also often have multi-colored shells which add a little excitement to what has been become a boring product in most supermarket cases. We buy our Malu Aina Farm eggs from the Roanoke Natural Foods Coop.
Make sure that in the winter you warm your plate in the microwave a little before you move the egg to it or you will have a less than perfect egg. Of course I'm assuming you have toasted a couple of pieces of your favorite bread to go along with the rest of the perfect Saturday morning breakfast. In our case our toast was some of the Boone's Mill whole wheat bread that I bought, but we also got a special treat and had toast this morning from homemade bread brought to us last night by Ruth, a friend from church who also provided us with a delicious pot roast dinner to go with the bread.
To enhance the perfect Saturday morning breakfast you might want some fresh orange juice. As a final touch, my wife usually prefers Strawberry preserves which remind us both of the hundreds of jars that my mother used as special gifts of love over the years. Right now we're enjoying a jar of Mediterranean Organic Strawberry Preservers which are pretty close to what mom used to make. They're also from the Roanoke Natural Foods Coop.
Of course I'm not that easy, I have to finish my perfect breakfast with a bite of toast and Marmite which my wife likens to axle grease. I picked up what I'm sure is certainly the character building habit of enjoying Marmite from some British friends. If you're interested in more on Marmite you can find some info here the "Marmite FAQ." You can also find Marmite at Roanoke Natural Foods Coop, Whole Foods, and the Kroger at Towers.
It's almost noon and my perfect breakfast is still with me. This is the first morning in a long time that I haven't had a sunrise or snow picture to share. There is a good reason for that. I slept in until 7:30 this morning. From the looks of the sky, I didn't miss much, and of course I got to enjoy that leisurely perfect breakfast. Which is good since I will soon have to face tackling our laundry for the first time in years.
With over eight hours of sleep and a perfect Saturday morning breakfast, I'm ready even for laundry.