Breakfast can be best described as sunshine on a plate. Breakfast restaurants that are the metaphoric sun, ready to rise with you. Whether or not it is the most important meal for dietary reasons, I do not know, I am not on such a diet.
Romanticizing the hunger in a dream and to answer the survivor in me by waking up to smells of sweet and savory morsels was never an issue. Fist-sized Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls and strips of bacon the color of red leather were on my menu every Saturday morning growing up. The crunching and flaking together made a beautiful morning recipe ritual.
Food pyramid be damned.
I can remember my first meal eating out for breakfast. It was one of those "breakfast all day" places, the old country store and restaurant, Cracker Barrel. One of those places filled with heirlooms, farm paraphernalia, black and white portraits, and other rustic oddities lining their walls. After I sat down for a game of checkers with my siblings in rocking chairs in front of a hearth that could fit five Santas in, we walked back to our table to eat.
I had the Old Timer's Breakfast, which included two scrambled eggs, sausages or patties, a biscuit and gravy, and a side of the hashbrown casserole. Our table's centerpiece was completed with a plate of more biscuits, corn muffins, apple butter, and jelly cups. This breakfast was the closest thing to a buffet I have had the pleasure to dine on.
The bounty of country fixings was incomparable, or was it?
While I never grew tired of the Cracker Barrel's menu, breakfast became this cherished moment that fed more than my belly. I was feeding my soul a dish of comportment. A glass of the rising sun can be found in orange juice or a mimosa, the wheat fields in a croissant, waffle boats on a lake of syrup. Breakfast is a meal of renewal.
Now that I am an adult, working in your sleep has found a new meaning. Mornings are meant to move you into a slow sober stupor. The day has begun but you have not until breakfast is made and eaten. Contrary to the name, a fast break is not intended by this meal. Mornings are a chance to review, restart, and recapture the time spent the day prior.
When I wake up for breakfast, I will find my regular establishments of choice. Briarpatch has towers made of French toast. Peach Valley serves their Chicken and Waffles with Cajun syrup. Keke's Cafe has omelets that are fluffy, yellow clouds that rain delicious fillings. Another Broken Egg Cafe has the best biscuits and gravy my grandfather would eat all day.
Breakfast and restaurants that specialized in the first meal of the day have helped me look forward to what the day may bring. They take me back to an easygoing place in my mind, one of reassurance and possibility.
While I do not get the chance to share breakfast with a friend or my family too often, I make time to sit down to an early riser's meal out of a necessity for starting again. The routine of a fresh start becomes a part of the process and slowly you do not feel self-conscious about enjoying breakfast alone.
Breakfast is like leftovers without the need for refrigeration; you keep coming back for something new but familiar on your plate. At the break of dawn, when the tasks of the day seem farther than my reach, I reach for another breakfast, just one doorstep away.
Every morning is a good morning that you get to wake up to. Breakfast makes it even more special.