make breakfast interesting.
we had guests over last night and since i was a bit harried with their impending arrival (i think because of the heat, the lack of a car - it was broken - and the fact that our friend's new girlfriend had never been to our house), i ended up walking to a local farmers' market and buying the "ol' standby" american breakfast ingredients. with the fresh ingredients i purchased, we served muffins (apple crumble and carrot raisin from this fantastic book), hard-cooked eggs with chopped heirloom tomatoes, sliced strawberries sprinkled with a hint of brown sugar, orange juice, peet's kenya coffee, peet's chai tea.
they liked everything very much, but i was a little disappointed in myself. i should have referred instead to the creative idea i found awaiting me in my inbox from ta-ze, an olive and olive oil purveyor i had the pleasure of visiting in person when i was in chicago recently. here's their suggested mediterranean "breakfast essentials" menu:
everyday simple plate
fresh sliced tomatoes
gemlik black olives in brine (can substitute with memecik green olives) or black olive paste
fresh daily bread
erkence or moskonisi extra virgin olive oil
black tea (preferably turkish)
twice a week, add
1 hard boiled egg or 1/2 avocado
tasteful additions for the weekend
baby european cucumbers (weekend-optional)
roasted red peppers
fresh herbs such as mint, basil, arugula
for your everyday breakfast plate, slice a tomato and drizzle with erkence olive oil. add a slice of feta cheese, 5-6 black olives, and 2 slices of multi-grain bread (make sure to drizzle some olive oil and oregano on the bread and broil for 2-3 minutes right before serving), drizzle everything with erkence extra virgin olive oil and complete with a cup of black tea. (if you cannot find turkish tea, try english breakfast or earl gray - they both work fine.) this is such a healthy and well-balanced way to start a day.
twice a week, you can add 1 hard boiled egg to your plate or 1/2 avocado. a suggestion for the hard boiled egg: cut into quarters, drizzle olive oil and paprika to taste.
for your weekend buffet, you can add more varieties of cheeses to your table, such as kashkaval, goat, or fresh mozzarella. in addition, bring color to your table with roasted red peppers, grilled mediterranean (long and lean) green peppers, baby european cucumbers, thick yogurt, honey and fresh herbs such as mint, basil, oregano or arugula. don't forget to drizzle olive oil on all of the above since it always makes everything taste better. enjoy!
buy their products here. (and ps, their customer service is exemplary.)
next time, i'm going to make breakfast more of an international affair.
photo credit: ta-ze.
while i can't deny that they both sound lovely (the breakfast you presented and the suggested one), i like sweet in the morning more than savory. either way...can i come over next time too?
Posted by: ren | Jul 27, 2006 4:33:17 PM
whoa-- your sources are good. too good. because that is precisely the breakfasts that i recall in istanbul.
Posted by: jazzie | Jul 27, 2006 5:18:24 PM
Hey Mipmup! I just came accross your site, and love every bit of your writing! Hope you don't mind me linking to you. Drop by my place sometime for a chat! :o)
Posted by: Meena | Jul 28, 2006 7:49:37 AM
Disappointed in yourself?! That sounds like a yummy breakfast you served. But so does the next-time breakfast. It reminds me of the amazing breakfast we had in Tiberias, Israel last year.
Posted by: shokufeh | Jul 29, 2006 8:50:34 PM
mipmup, this post is making me hungry! You've described my dream breakfast, which I only seem to get on long weekends or visits to a friend's house. Obviously, I need to do more of both! Turks know how to do food right.
Posted by: ae (arse poetica) | Aug 3, 2006 8:45:29 PM