Our eating habits have changed on the farm over the years but that does not mean they cannot be just as tasty and more healthful. Pauline came up with a dish that gives me the foods I like in a way I can enjoy and live with.
I and probably everyone else anywhere near my age heard, from the time we went to school at least, was the most important meal of the day. The meal that gets us started off right and aided us in our ability to learn and do the things we need to do each day to have a good day and get the most out of it. Now I like everyone else heard that, and maybe, gave it some passing credit.
Mostly I ate breakfast, well because it was cooked and put in front of you and you ate what was put in front of you. This was not a problem for me on several levels. The first being that I enjoy food. The second being that I enjoy breakfast food especially. Breakfast when I was a kid was pretty traditional. Almost without fail it was fried eggs, fresh out of the hen house of course, fried bacon, sometimes fresh from our hogs but most of the time store bought smoked, just like everyone in town had, and grits. Had to have those grits and that was OK with me. I still like grits. Cooked down to where they are good and firm and remain in the shape you put them on the plate in. Not so much like they are served in most restaurants where you put one tablespoon full of them in the middle of a plate and it covers the entire bottom of the plate. Well that may be a slight exaggeration. Dad did a lot of the cooking of breakfasts around the house due in part I think to the fact that he was up early anyway and needed something to do till it got light enough outside to start work. He cooked on high heat. You could smell that hot bacon fat from the minute your feet hit the floor in the morning. The eggs were of course fried in the same fat right behind the bacon and on the same high temperature.
Now I dare say most people haven’t had the opportunity to enjoy eggs cooked in this manner. An egg sticking to the pan was not a problem since there was enough fat in the pan to float it. Remember dad cooked on high heat so when the egg hit that almost smoking oil the white would spread out all nice and uniform and quickly solidify and soon after that, if I was lucky, start to get crispy on the edges. I don’t believe I had an egg easy over till I left home. Just as soon as those edges started to crisp you start using the spatula to flip that hot oil over it till the white was cooked and the yolk had that nice white membrane that is achieved by the easy over step of todays eggs. Use the spatula to lift it out of the grease, let most of the fat drip off and put it on the plate with that mound of good stiff grits and you were ready to go. Make yourself a couple slices of toast if you desired or just lite bread as we called it. No such thing as whole wheat. Or a bagel? I’m pretty sure that is spelled beagle and that is the kind of dog our neighbor. (KIDDING!) You didn’t even have to put butter on the grits because there was already enough bacon fat on your plate to flavor them up when the eggs were mixed in. Breakfast served eaten and enjoyed and boy was it good.
OK so I over toasted the bread. Breakfast was still good and I ate it all. Just like I was raised
I think Pauline is trying to keep me alive. She won’t tell me why though. But she does find good ways to do so.
Things are a little different now. And to be honest if it wasn’t I could well be dead from blocked arteries or some other coronary problem. Oh we still have the grits and eggs pretty regular, on weekends mostly. Our lifestyles are different now and not a lot of us eat before daylight or going to work so weekends are when we get the good stuff. But even when we do the eggs are not cooked floating in fat and the bacon is cooked crispy and well drained so the fat is not all over it and of course the grits are a more reasonable serving than they were when hard physical labor was a part of the normal day’s routine. Pauline or myself now may make scrambled eggs or an omelet or occasionally something called a (Frittata? I think).
I am guessing this is a dish brought about by the Spanish influence that we are seeing more of in our society now. This is not a complaint! I enjoy good food regardless of it’s ethnic origins. I even asked for spaghetti last weekend. Pauline almost fell over! I am almost certain that did not come from my Scotts, Irish, French, English and German ancestry. But anyway I think she starts with a half dozen eggs and then adds… Oops, I was just corrected,
From the source:
2 whole, farm fresh eggs and then add egg whites (about a half cup) , a little 2% milk or water and S&P, to taste, (this whole process starts by sautéing diced onions, small red and green peppers and maybe deli ham or whatever leftover meat is available) in a little light olive oil, then add the egg mixture and continues to fry until the bottom is almost set, put in a heated oven on a low broil and cook from the top until partially firmed, pull out and add any fresh veggies available such as cherry tomatoes halved and grated or sliced cheese (any kind will do such as pepper jack, velvetta slices or shredded cheddar) again to your taste. Return it to the low broiler and watch carefully until a light brown.
I like to give credit where due and this is pretty much Pauline’s concoction as she put it. Influenced no doubt by the cooking shows she enjoys. But I like to think also by my what I call garden fresh omelet in which I put things such s finely shredded lettuce, peppers and tomatoes cheese of choice and whatever left over meats or lunchmeats we have and have the taste for that day.
It doesn’t have to be just in the morning you know it makes a good and healthful evening meal as well.
You know it is the winter months right? That does not mean we get to do nothing just because it is cold outside. Start Planning for spring now! Makes it a lot easier come spring.