Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Breakfast for the Big Chill

For awhile it was hot here.  Really hot.  The kind of heat that makes you move slowly and not consider consuming any beverages that are not poured over ice.  Even last Friday, I was wearing shorts and a tank top as I went about my daily routine.  As our late-arriving summer spread into September, my morning priority after my usual bout of chores was getting us outside to enjoy the sunshine.  And so, I fell into a breakfast rut.  A delicious and healthy rut, but it basically revolved around my new cereal obsession, Kashi Golden Goodness.  This is one of the simpler Kashis, but I love it: tiny little whole grain flakes mixed with rolled oat and puffed wheat clusters.  I used to loooove Honey Bunches of Oats, and Golden Goodness is like a healthy, grown-up version of that cereal.  But I digress.  For most of the summer, I was throwing my Kashi in a bowl with some blueberries, pouring on my milk, down the hatch, and out the door we'd go.  Easy. Peasy.
Now, suddenly it is fall.  The temps here dropped twenty degrees over the weekend.  I love the crisp morning air, and am ready to add some heat and creativity back into my morning rituals, especially now that hunkering down and sipping something for awhile is far more appealing than rushing right out the door bright and early.

For starters, gone are the days of magical iced coffee; it is time for my espresso maker to get back to work.  This is the winter where I perfect my latte making!  I'm discovering some tricks (you can't tamp down your espresso too hard, and your dairy has to have some fat to it, or it isn't going to froth properly), and I hope to learn more as latte season progresses. I also love how the best professional baristas will make designs in the top of an espresso drink.  My favorite is when you get handed a drink with a heart on the top...
Latte from Joe - The Art of Coffee in my sister's 'hood in NYC.
...it's like the coffee dude just wants to start your day with a little love.
So, I've decided to start drawing on my own drinks, both to recreate the coffehouse experience on the cheaps, and to try to add a little love to every morning...
Latte a la SMJ, this morning in my kitchen.
Here we have a large, sloppy heart to represent all the large, sloppy love in my large, sloppy life.
I will report back when/if I improve at latte-heart-making.

For the rest of my cold weather morning fare, I once again find myself drawn to and inspired by the great photos by Jennifer Causey at Simply Breakfast.
I'm so ready for treats like eggs on polenta, toasty bagels with smushed avocado, toast smothered in preserves, and fried eggs on nook-and-cranny-licious English muffins.  It is time to slow our mornings down and enjoy a legit breakfast.  If Simply Breakfast doesn't inspire you to take the time to cook something proper in the AM, nothing will.  And if you need daily inspiration, Jennifer is coming out with a 2012 calendar of breakfasts!  This excites me an unreasonable amount.  If wanting a breakfast calendar is wrong, I don't want to be right.  
Hooray for brisk mornings, a stiff caffeine hit, and a beautiful breakfast with love on top.
What is your favorite cold weather morning grub?


  1. I still love Cream of Wheat cereal on a cold morning. haha One of my favorite meals though, I could eat this for any meal of the day, is good old spiced up black beans, eggs & cheese on top...in a bowl, often times with a sprinkle of green onions & definitely a few shakes of hot sauce. I don't know what it is, but I love this.

  2. My go-to breakfast on cold mornings is slow-cooked oatmeal with bananas and brown sugar sprinkled on top. Yum. I like Alison's idea above with the black beans and eggs!