Green Food

Yesterday was St. Patrick’s Day, so my wife decided to have some fun with our foods. We added a bit of food coloring to a couple of our meals.

Our pancake breakfast was a colorful way to start the day. This breakfast is always a family favorite no matter what colour we make them. The skillet cooked flapjacks were delicious.

Dinner however…

Dinner was unsettling.

My wife made fried chickpea patties, which are always good. We had a basic romaine lettuce salad on the side. Our other side was rice with a mushroom sauce. The mushroom sauce was dyed green and was most unappetizing looking. That made it a bit more difficult to enjoy, even though it is something we have had in the past (only in its normal state).

One of our kids described the sauce as ogre snot. The other said it looked like Nickelodeon slime. Unfortunately the colour changed how the meal tasted in my mind. I’ve had issues with foods in the past based on texture or smell. Never colour. This was a first for me.

Note to self: do not dye cream of mushroom soup ever again.

Cheerio To Eating Breakfast Cereal

Yesterday morning I decided that a great way to start my day would be eating a big bowl of Cheerios in milk. In all my years of eating breakfast and growing big and strong, I knew that in order to really enjoy a bowl of Cheerios I had to be the first to eat a bowl from the new box.

I also knew that once I opened a fresh box and poured out the cereal- I’d have to act quickly in order to enjoy these little, round, mini oat donuts. The spoon needed to be at the ready inside the bowl, underneath it’s first scoop. The bowl of cereal had to be on my dining table waiting patiently. And only then, would the milk be added.

Then I shovel those crunchy, (what I assume is sawdust and glue infused) oat circles into my mouth as quick as possible. Like an Olympic swimmer, you have to plan your breathing and time it between scoops. I eat my Cheerios so fast that the milk barely has time to penetrate their inner circles.

Within seconds, the bowl is filled with nothing but a milky desert sand coloured liquid. No more bites. Now to drink!

Do you tilt the bowl and continue on the animalistic path of slobbery? Or do you elegantly utilize your spoon and savor the new milk?

If you chose “tilt the bowl” you are my kind of cereal connoisseur. Like a kid rushing to be ready for school- one needs to get this meal in the body as fast as possible. No one likes soggy cereal and thick milk.

I’m older now. And after yesterday’s breakfast- much wiser. It turns out my adult body doesn’t like milk the same way as it once did. Turns out that scarfing down a bowl of oat cereal can upset my tummy tumtum. What I once enjoyed in the bowl- now upsets my bowel.

I can safely say that I am ready to move on. I shall no longer eat bowls of cereal with milk. Even if it’s the first bowl of freshly opened cereal. The best bowl.

Who needs an enema when you can have a big hearty bowl of Cheerios to clean you out… And clear out a room.

Spread ‘Em!

My go-to breakfast of choice is the one, the only, the crowd favorite- TOAST!

Powdered Toast Man-
The Breakfast Superhero!

Okay, maybe it’s not the greatest breakfast in the world. But it is so easy to make. Slice of bread goes in the toaster, toasted bread comes out. It’s one of life’s little miracles. And it’s a regular staple in my home.

The most pertinent question remains for said toast. What do you put on it? Jam? Jelly? Marmalade? Butter? I’m a big fan of most spreads. Strawberry jam, citrus marmalade, or even Nutella!!!

My usual is peanut butter and honey. I love how the peanut butter gets a bit melty and super smooth. Spread some liquid honey on that and I’m in heaven. It’s the simple pleasures in life that make me happy. I’m easy like Sunday morning.

What is your spread of choice? Are you a jam or jelly type? Or perhaps you like the toast dry? No judging here!

Breakfast of Champions

On my days off, I love to make a big breakfast. Eggs, bacon, potatoes, waffles, pancakes, sausages, etc… My family loves it as well. In fact, my eggs seem to be just as happy.

Scrambled eggs are one of my favorite breakfasts to make. First I cut up a couple of slices of bacon into small bits. Then I fry them up in my Cast iron pan. While that’s cooking- whisk up two eggs per person with a bit of milk. Once the bacon is cooked- gently add the eggs. I leave the grease from the bacon in the pan to help prevent the eggs from sticking. After a couple of minutes, I carefully slide my spatula across the pan making sure the egg mixture gets evenly cooked.

Did I mention that I preheat my oven to 225°? I do this so as to warm the plates and bowls for breakfast. Once the scrambled eggs have been flipped and there’s no more liquid left, I begin to remove them into a serving bowl. I put a small layer of eggs then shred some cheddar cheese on top. Layer, repeat; layer, repeat. Then into the oven to melt the cheese.

Big breakfasts are the best. Oftentimes we make it a brunch because I enjoy sleeping in on my days off. What’s your go-to big breakfast? Let me know in the comments.

Peanut Butter

The number one food staple in our home is peanut butter. We always have a jar of it in the cupboard. It’s the “Go To” breakfast and snack food choice. It’s great on apple slices or crackers. But mostly it goes on toast.

I put a lot of peanut butter on my bread. So much so that it usually oozing over the edges. I love peanut butter. But it has to be the super cheap stuff- not the stuff that’s organic or fresh tasting.

I want the kind of PB that will last forever in the cupboard. I want the type of peanut butter that doesn’t require refrigeration and stirring before usage. The sort of peanut butter that you can take to work and eat by the spoonful because you’re too lazy to pack a real lunch. The kind that is so smooth you’re not sure if it’s even made from peanuts.

That’s my kind of food product.

Breaking the Fast

I live very separate lives when it comes to eating breakfast. Part of me wants to eat a huge greasy meal that is sure to clog my arteries. Then there’s a part that wants me to eat healthily. Another part of me skips breakfast all together. I have no idea which is which until my day begins.

I love to cook.

Period.

And when I make breakfast- my family loves it. Especially on weekends. That’s when we are all at home together. Oftentimes my family is asking me if I can make them something to eat. From scratch-made waffles to vegetarian omelettes- I make it all delectable.

And my family devours it.

But those days that I have to be at work at 06:00am- I won’t eat anything until closer to 10:00am. By then my stomach is pretty empty and ready to enjoy food. Usually it’s a PB+J sandwich or some granola and yogurt. It also helps with the entire day. It keeps me from wanting to eat too much junk. If I eat too early, I usually want to forage and snack the rest of the day.

Shift Work and Eating Habits

Whenever I have a day shift at work, it means waking up between 4:30 and 5am. Because of this I don’t tend to eat breakfast. I just don’t feel good starting my day on a full stomach.

I usually just have a cup of coffee and one for the road. It gets my system going. About three hours into my day at work and I’ll start to get hungry, so I’ll have a small snack. That tides me over until lunch. By the time I get home for dinner, I’m pretty hungry- and that makes dinners taste that much better.

On my days off however, I eat a really big breakfast after waking up. But that is usually because I sleep in. So my breakfasts are anywhere from 11am to 2pm. The kids love this on when my day off coincides with their days off as well. That means everyone gets a big breakfast.

It seems like a strange routine. But because of working long shifts and doing alternating shift work, I try and eat at relatively the same time each day. Nights are a bit tougher. I try to not eat much after midnight. Maybe just a light snack before the end of the shift. I’m not quite like a Gremlin.

How do you cope with long work days or shift work?

Pancakes

This morning in bed, my wife mentioned that we haven’t had pancakes for breakfast in a long time. After some thought, I don’t recall the last time we did make pancakes. Maybe near Christmas? So guess what we’re having today.

I miss pancakes. They are easy and tasty. To make them more interesting we sometimes add chocolate chips. We also have a couple of special pancake pans that offer up shapes. This allows the kids to pour the syrup into the spaces formed, making large puddles of sweetness.

I think owning a “Pancake Printer” would be fun. Although not very practical as it took a while to make the pancakes. Meaning they weren’t warm when served.

Today is just plain ol’ pancakes though. We will enjoy some ham as a side dish instead of bacon or sausages. I’m making myself hungry. Time to start cooking up breakfast!

Breakfast for Dinner?

It’s a beautiful summer evening.  Tonight would be a perfect night to BBQ or order a pizza.  When I was younger, we had a fantastic home with an inground swimming pool.  My sister and I, along with friends, would swim all day long.  It was relaxing and fun.  The summer months flew by.


On a night like tonight, my parents wouldn’t bother making a dinner.  Instead we would have what my parents called a “cold plate”.  Essentially it was breads, cheeses and sliced deli meats all laid out to make our own sandwiches.  This is also where I discovered how much I love deviled eggs.  I also discovered that if you eat too many, you have an “oopsie” if you trust that fart. Even worse is when you’re a twelve year old boy that is sitting at a picnic table, still wearing the swim trunks, damp from swimming, and trust that fart.  Literally a wet fart.  I now limit myself to two deviled eggs, no matter how good they taste.


So tonight, I just want some enjoyable comfort food.  Something easy & tasty, and not too processed.  We don’t have any deli meats or artisan breads at the moment.  We did receive some country fresh eggs yesterday and we have a large smoked ham.  I was thinking of making deviled eggs, but would much rather enjoy them in another style.  Tonight it’s breakfast for dinner! I’m going to make everyone some sunny side up eggs and ham and toast.  Easy and delicious.  

And no “oopsies” planned… hopefully.

Waffles

I love making big breakfasts.  My family loves it when I make breakfast.  I’m constantly trying new things.  Sometimes I make deep fried hashbrowns, bacon and sunny side up eggs for everyone.  Scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese served with farmer sausage and country fried seasoned potatoes are another favorite.  Recently I made an amazing baked egg in avacado served with warm salsa and bacon bits.  In the summer with fresh vegetables and herbs I find myself making omelettes in a variety of fashions. 

 

Mmmm freshness.

 
Ah, summer.  I love making breakfast in the summer, sitting outside enjoying a fresh cup of coffee, and looking out into my wooded backyard.  Fresh air, birds chirping, and lush plants make it such a pleasure to be alive.  We live a few blocks away from the Krause Berry Farms and I am a sucker for fresh fruit.  We make smoothies or put the fresh berries into sparkling wine at breakfast (if we don’t have mimosas mind you).  But the best is fresh fruit on home made waffles with fresh whipped cream.  

During our travels, we do our best to stay at hotels that offer breakfast.  A few years ago we noticed that there was often these waffle irons and waffle batter available to make in the mornings at most hotels.  Much better than stale donuts and toast.  When we got home, we ended up buying a flipable waffle iron for us to use.  It has gotten such a good work out, we bought a second one in order to make twice as many waffles in half the time.

 

Chocolate cake mix waffles. So good.

 
Now, here’s a little secret I learned for making amazing waffles:  Use a boxed cake mix.  Chocolate cake waffles end up tasting like cupcakes.  Even a lemon cake mix stays light and fluffy in the middle. Serve with some ice cream and fresh blue berries or strawberries for a wonderful summer brunch.  Now I’m hungry…

This summer, feel free to come over for some brunch, I’d love to cook for all my friends!