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Breakfast is Champion

August 27th, 2011 - By Lari Robling

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We all know it’s the most important meal of the day, yet so many of us grab a donut on the go or skip it entirely. Lisa Waddle from Fine Cooking magazine has some ideas for busy mornings. Plus, guess what’s back on the menu!


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Step away from the cold pizza! Put down the loaded pizza. Or a worse crime… skipping the first meal of the day completely. We all know a healthy breakfast gets us started and sets the tone for the day. Lisa Waddle, editor of “The Best of Fine Cooking Breakfast,” says planning is key both in getting that meal in and avoiding that mid-morning slump. “You don’t want to be at 10:30am starving and the only option is the donut cart. If you have a handful of almonds, anything portable, those little greek yogurts are thick and luscious and have 100 calories. That can get you to 1:00pm and then you can have a more reasonable lunch.”

Omlette for breakfast

And, there’s good news, too. Eggs are back in fashion! They are good for us! “They are! The facts are everything in moderation look at your whole diet eggs are great they are one of the fastest things that you can make. You know most people think ‘I don’t have time to make an omellette, before I run out the door,’ but an omelette really takes 3 minutes. From cracking the egg and cooking 2 minutes on a side and you can fold it up and have it as you go out the door so you don’t even need to sit down with fork and knife.”

Indeed. The egg is a portable powerhouse, at roughly 70 calories per egg it’s loaded with high quality protein, vitamins and minerals.

Breakfast dishes don’t have to just be for the morning but can take a place any time of day. They have the added advantage of being great for the budget, too, plus you don’t always have to think traditional ingredients. Waddle recommends a recipe for a black bean and cheddar burrito with spinach, “you can make that the night before from leftovers even. So you serve beans and rice take what you have wrap it up in a tortilla, stick in the fridge and that way you can just grab it as you go out the door.”

Congee, Chinese breakfast soup

And if you have a little more time, you can always look to other cultures for breakfast inspiration. What about soup? The Japanese have miso, Vietnamese enjoy their noodle soup, and the Chinese, congee, a rice based soup.

In Chinatown at Ray’s Café and Teahouse, Owner Grace Chen offers this description of this breakfast food from her native Taiwan. “We have so many kinds of variety of congee and we have small side dishes around it most are vegetable for the morning, eggs, seaweed, and beans. All kinds of beans. We pick that out into our bowl. But in Taiwan, the most popular is the plain rice soup.”

So I asked Grace Chen if she has congee for breakfast here, “no, because, morning we all very busy it takes a while to cook the congee and most is very hot you can’t just eat it, it takes time and sit down.”

Oh, our busy American life! Just keep in mind breakfast is the meal of champions. Except when it’s cold leftover pizza.

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