Your Breakfast Ritual

In playwriting class then, today (as referenced in the post below), we were discussing rituals. Our teacher, Martin Epstein, says: “Theater begins when a ritual is broken.” For example, in King Lear, we witness the ritual of a parent dividing up the land for his daughters in exchange for his daughters’ declarations of love. If Cordelia were to gush like Regan and Gonreil, there would be no play. But instead she breaks the ritual–“Unhappy that I am, I cannot heave my heart into my mouth: I love your majesty according to my bond; not more nor less”–and we have a masterpiece.

Which brings us to breakfast. Our class decided that when it comes to food, we behave most ritualistically with breakfast. We have our breakfast rituals. We always make coffee and read the paper; or we toast Ego waffles and eat them with jelly. We all have our breakfast rituals.

Except for me. I don’t eat breakfast. I stay up really late at night and then sleep really late. I start with lunch. If I have an early class, I buy a donut and a water from the donut cart–that’s the extent of it. But I’m sure that’s not true for you. I’m sure you, my better-behaved, gourmet audience have breakfast rituals. What is your breakfast ritual? Tell us all about it. And then, at some later point (maybe Monday?), try to break your breakfast ritual and report back on how it affected your day. Good luck!

43 comments

  1. Toast a slice of german pumpernickel seed bread until it’s almost burnt then spread it with PB.

    Make some coffee with the coffee maker (the one with inidividual doses) and put the cream it it BEFORE pouring the cofee.

    Slice and apple in TEN exact parts.

  2. Out of bed straigh to the coffee maker. Make one cup. Pour into mug AFTER half and half. Drink while reading blogs. Bowl of cereal. Everything else come after that breakfast ritual.

  3. I grab the same 8oz cup out of the dishwasher – fill half with 1% milk and the other half with fat free half and half – squeeze Hershey’s chocolate syrup for 5 good seconds – stir – slam. YUMMMM!

  4. Buy nonfat grande latte from Starbucks Drive Thru. Flirt with cute drive-thru boy. Drive to work. Drink latte while reading email.

  5. My breakfast ritual is isolated to the weekends (on the weekdays I try to eat healthy). I wake up an hour or so before my boyfriend (around noon) to start preparing breakfast. I first grind the coffee beans (I always mix different beans). Put a kettle of water on. While I am waiting for the water to boil I chop onions, bell peppers, and grate cheese. Once the water is at a boil I pour it into my french press and stir wait 5 min then press, pour into mugs and caraffe. I then start on the hashbrowns. Mix the eggs, cook the bacon/sausage. Put the biscuits in the oven. Depending on my mood I either make breakfast empanadas, migas, breakfast burritos (absolutely nothing ordinary). Then He wakes up we read the paper and eat breakfast for the next 2 hours. Pretty lazy weekends, huh?

  6. Prepare coffee for slovenly French husband. (Always freshly ground dark roasted beans prepared in a Cafetiere a` Piston).

    Serve coffee to him in bed, black, with Balthazar multi-grain toast and confiture.

    Grab something for myself at work. Salaud. Can’t wait to break that decidedly unsatisfying ritual.

  7. Cigarettes and coffee. Lots, and lots of coffee. The notion of eating food in the morning is somewhat alien, unless I’ve already had cigarettes and coffee for a couple of hours, at which point it’s usually lunchtime.

  8. Diet Coke and Camel Lights… in my car… while praying that someone in my office is celebrating a birthday so that there will be some sort of pastry waiting for me when I get there.

  9. Chocolate Peppermint Stick or Sweet Dreams Luna bar and coffee with half and half in my thermal mug–on the train into NYC. Then, I catch up on my sleep for the rest of the ride.

  10. One of the housemates I live with makes a big pot of black tea every morning which she only drinks one cup of. At 10 am if I get up, I drink the rest of the lukewarm tea. It beats making it myself. And then I have cream style yogurt from the fridge. And then go back to sleep. Ah, the life of a student with no morning classes…

  11. Mornings with an early class, breakfast is a cheese quesadilla with picante sauce on the inside. (Less messy, for the inevitable run to class after the 30 minute hunt for parking.)Mornings with no early class, breakfast tacos with egg, chorizo and onion. However, left over pizza or thai food trumps any sort of tortilla or egg-based concoction.

  12. two scoops of cottage cheese and coffee; yum!

    on the weekends, bacon and scrambled eggs with chives and cream cheese.

  13. Being “of an age”, large glass of water with fiber stirred in.

    Wash the meds and vitamins down with a glass of juice.

    Banana.

    Tea. Liptons, none of that raspberry glop the try to pass off as tea.

    After a swim, an oat bran bialy, with more tea.

    Fridays, breakfast with the same group that I’ve been breakfasting with for the past 15 years. Then, none of the above apply.

  14. Fill mug with hot water from Instant Hot (highly recommend getting one). Place 2 equal packets and 1 Republic of Tea Green Tea w/ ginseng. Stir. Open tupperwear container filled with Cheerios that Mom sent from Costco, because small box of Cheerios costs $5.79 in NYC. Use plastic red cup (yes, those beer cups) to scoop up cereal. Have a banana, eat cereal sans milk, drink tea, watch the Today Show.

  15. My breakfast routine changes with the season, depending on what fruit’s in season. When I had morning class I drank a lot of tea.

    Now that I’m a 9-6 employee, I have a slice of nutty multigrain bread, toasted very dark with crunchy peanut butter and a banana.

    OR half an everything bagel with light veggie cream cheese and cucumbers.

    OR non-fat yogurt with chopped fruit and ¼ cup generic GrapeNuts.

    It could be any one of those three, but it is always one of those three.

  16. A glass of water and the inevitable coffee with an espresso machine. There is no way I can break the ritual AND stay awake till around 11/12, when I drink the second cup of coffee.

  17. I have a breakfast ritual that disgusts my coworkers; I eat whatever is left over from the past few meals. They sometimes make a game of asking me what I had that morning. It could be a Thai chicken salad, maybe a piece of salmon or rice, or whatever is reasonably fresh in the fridge. I think this started when I used to work at a crisis hotline on the night shift; there really is no day/night discernment; just the need to eat! I also HAVE to read the paper while I eat my breakfast, or it just does not seem right.

  18. Egg burrito: Two eggs, scrambled. (If I’m feeling gourmet I add some milk to the eggs. Okay, let’s be honest, I only add milk if I even have any.) Warm the tortilla up for 10 seconds in the microwave. Scoop eggs onto tortilla. Put lots of shredded cheese. Add two fork fulls of chunky salsa. Wrap and enjoy! Yum, yum!

  19. What disgusts your co-workers is part of what breakfast was before single serving cartons of yogurt. Hash, made from leftovers of boiled dinner, cold fruit pie, scrapple made from pork ‘scraps’ of whatever porky thing they had for dinner,etc. Anyway, what they never had a slice of cold pizza in the morning? You are normal; they are the freaks.

  20. Still in my last year of high school here so..things run a little standard (can we use html?)
    I try my best to eat what body builders would call ‘clean food'(while i’m certainly in excellent shape i am not a ‘ripper’) with minor dips into some tasty goods…

    Every other day: Eggwhite omelette filled with a bunch of veggies found in the fridge that i’ll either fry up or throw in raw (depends on what kind obviously) with some salsa and goat’s milk-feta. Usually have that with a small fruit dish and either a shot of soymilk or tea.
    Maybe a nice protein shake blended with fruit and a handful of almonds

    Besides those days…I usually cook up a nice old fashioned oatmeal OR cream of rice w/ wheat germ OR hot oat-bran OR vegan french toast OR swiss meusli. Good complex carbohydrates for quick energy.

    Man, that’s alot to mention, but there is alot more…breakfast makes me nervous…there are so many things to think about the night before and i worry the most about this.

  21. Breakfast is definitely my least gourmetish meal but ritualized nonetheless. When I get back fron running, I put my wife’s Super Big Gulp of Diet Pepsi in the fridge and my liter bottle of Aquafina in the freezer. I take my dog outside to her chain so she can perform HER morning ritual. Upon coming inside I take a mutltivitamin, and then eat one bowl of carefully layered cold cereal (usually Wheaties on the bottom, mueslix or something sweeter on top) while I read the morning paper. Inevitably, Bridie the dog starts barking halfway through to let me know she’s ready for her breakfast. I dash outside to avoid that killer of morning buzz, Soggy Cereal Syndrome.

  22. I down a phlegm cutter: a shot of whatever booze is in the house – then a smoke or twenty so I can keep on enjoying the same breakfast every morning.

  23. It seems that a lot of us have coffee as part of our morning ritual. For me, it is a packet of Swiss Miss with marshmallows, 3 oz. of half-and-half, and several teaspoons of sugar dumped into a 12 oz. cup and then coffee that tastes like cigarette smoke poured on top. Stir, drink, and repeat while setting up my computer for the day’s work.

  24. oh ouch, my life has become such that i no longer even have a breakfast ritual. so sad. but for a very long time it was a mango smoothie followed by eggs, toast and coffee. these days it’s coffee from tim horton’s or 2nd cup and a bagel, with creamcheese if i’m feeling healthy and butter if i’m too tired to care. the butter tastes better. on saturdays, it’s coffee and toast with the globe and mail, by which time it’s usually lunch.

  25. A large mug of black coffee. All else is negotiable, and I have no other ritual than:

    Coffee. Black. Hot. A large mug of it, or maybe two.

    Then I eat sometime after that, and what I eat? Who knows. Whatever I feel like.

  26. I’m another one, who can’t stomach the idea of food in the AM. I get up at 7, every morning, and drink some iced tea. Around 10, after reading the paper, and doing my morning work, I have a huge cup of mocha (leftover coffee, from the mister’s morning ritual, two packets of sugar free Swiss Miss, and a good dose of half and half). I usually force myself to have some soup, oatmeal, or a sammich around noonish.

    I can’t fathom eating in the morning, and I don’t particularly like traditional breakfast foods.

    Unless I go out for breakfast, which is once a weekish, then all bets are off. Something changes, when you go to an establishment with the sole intention of Eating Breakfast.

  27. Once a week (usually Wednesday or Thursday), I eat breakfast in my college’s cafeteria–biscuits and gravy and bacon and coffee (except not the latter for a while; I gave up caffeine for Lent). Otherwise I either don’t eat it or I have brown sugar instant oatmeal.

  28. Breakfast consists of a shower. Then if I have enough time, a glass of water before I run out of the house because I’m close to being late for my Modern Drama class. IF it’s in the house (which it rarely is) I have a quaker “oatmeal-to-go” bar while I’m walking to class. Or an apple. Apples are good.

    Now breakfast as a meal outside of the morning. Steak and Eggs. A bed of hashbrowns, two eggs (over hard), and a nice piece of strip loin (med-rare), smothered in fried onions and peppers. Mmmmm I love breakfast as a meal. Just not in the morning.

  29. I’m a homicidal monster if I’m disturbed in my moring ritual. Alarm goes off at 6:45. Get up, make latte with kenya AA brown coffee and 2% milk. While the espresso machine is warming up, drink some water and brush teeth. Toat two slices of multigrain flax seed bread and spread pea butter (like peanut butter but less smelly) and either jam or honey on top. When toasts are ready, go over to the rats cage, give them their morning toasties and a sip of my coffee as well. Then I go back to the table, down my meds and finish eating while reading whatever is written on the pea butter or jam jar.

    Only after this is done may I be approached without risks of severe bodily harm.

  30. I used to have a breakfast ritual, when I worked in NYC. Now I don’t really. I have 3-4 breakfasts I like to make for myself. My weekends are a ritual – Saturday – scrambled eggs with or without toast or bacon for myself and eggs-up for my hubby, Sundays either pancakes or waffles, with or without bacon – depending on the weekend and what we did the weekend before.

    During the week, I try and get creative. I am living a low carb lifestyle mainly (except for the occasional cheat) so I make myself a lot of different egg dishes. I also like Whole Wheat English Muffins (which I make, not buy) with low fat butter and a cup of coffee with a touch of light cream and a tbsp of sugar-free Dulce de Leche syrup. Some breakfasts I make with veggies, some with cheeses of different kinds.

    If I got out for breakfast, I like the frittata at the Cocoon Cafe in Washington, NJ or the Philly Cheesesteak Fried Onion Omelette at the Royal Diner, with coffee. No sides. The omelette itself is enough to fill me for several hours. I think they use 3 eggs.

    When I worked I ate 2 different things for breakfast – either an egg sandwich with bacon on a toasted bagel or fruit from the salad bar and some cereal I had at my desk. Always with a cup of coffee – regular with sugar-substitute.

    When pregnant, I ate the bagel almost every morning with an orange. They have folic acid, which is very important.

    So those were, and are the usual breakfasts around here.

  31. Weekdays, I used to eat Kashi Good Friends cereal every morning until they changed to a new recipe and broke my heart.

    Now I ritually eat some kind of whole-grain, high-fiber cereal and milk while I read the paper. After I go to the gym, I usually have some fruit, typically a grapefruit or orange for the Vitamin C. What can I say? It keeps my digestive system happy.

    And since I’ve been pregnant, I can’t have my daily coffee or tea any more. Nor mimosas on the weekend. Which SUCKS. That’s enough ritual-breaking for a life time, if you ask me.

  32. Though my college-student peers often like to pretend they’re too cool for breakfest, I make no such claims. I love breakfast, and I need SOMETHING in the morning or I feel seriously cheated. If I’m feeling virtuous (ie getting up early enough to go to the gym first thing in the morning), I munch on a HUGE granny smith apple that I’ve stolen from the dining hall. If I’m feeling lazy, I eat Kashi GoLean Crunch in the room before dashing off to class (this cereal must be eaten dry, out of the Boston mug on my desk. There is no other way). If I’m feeling normal, it’s cereal (granola or Smart Start) mixed with nonfat yogurt and maybe some craisins, washed down with half a cup of black coffee. If I’m feeling luxurious, it’s a wheat bagel with light cream cheese and strawberry jam (this is the standard weekend breakfast, which is eaten at 11 or 12 and must last me till dinner).

    Those are the standbys. Sounds like a lot of options, but once the type of day has been determined (lazy, normal, extra virtuous, etc), there’s only one acceptable breakfast choice. Unless the dining hall has their amazing ginger-granola stocked, in which case all bets are off and I spend the rest of the day with a smile on my face, dreaming of the dessert helping I’ll have at dinnertime…

  33. Coffee: usually Kenya AA made with a melitta-type drip machine, sometimes Colombian Supremo or something else if I feel adventurous. I drink my first cup, bring one to the S/O who’s still lazing in bed. The rest goes in a thermos with hot milk and sometimes Scharffen Berger cocoa powder. Then food: I’m a total high-protein girl — for reasons too boring to go into, I have to eat between 70 – 90 grams of protein a day. So breakfast is where it starts: 2 eggs with cheese, ham, bacon or whatever on wholegrain toast to go, or a ham or turkey sandwich,or even an organic hamburger. The weekends are for elaborate lazy breakfasts in bed — popovers, french toast, fresh berries, pancakes, bacon,homemade cornbread. But coffee’s a given, no matter what…gotta have the java.

  34. Coffee and cookies from the office pantry. Sometimes an apple. In the weekends, I wake up late and have brunch instead. My favourite breakfast is congee and dim sums. Yummm…

  35. I’m boring. one packet of no-name oatmeal (any kind but peaches n cream which is barfy) it’s the same stuff as quaker but why pay 2 more dollars for it? add a small handful of nuts or dried fruit like cranberries or blueberries. With the oatmeal, I’ll have a really large glass of water. Plus I take a Women’s Once a Day multi-vitamin (can’t go no-name there, the pills are too huge), and a vitamin c. occasionaly I’ll also have a banana.

    I don’t have “coffee” until I get coffee break at work. We have an espresso machine at the firm. :-) Then I’ll make a latte. but I’m not an expert foamer.

    When going out, usually have some kinda benny. On weekends I command my husband to make biscuick pancakes, and sometimes he obliges.

  36. Find whatever candy I have in my cabinet to munch on while reading emails. Then chocolate protein shake with fiber supplement. Must chug- tastes horrible. Pick up HUGE coffee on the way to work.

  37. Coffee made in tall shiny silver percolator, makes a busy noise. So many years I did not like coffee: now I drink it with ginger (powdered, a half spoon or spoon swirled in. No longer do I suffer the irritable tummy I used to feel). With ginger I even like it without cream. Then we have eggs, made in a quiche pan (cooks very quickly and evenly in the microwave). If there are bits of sausage in the eggs and many onions it is the king of eggs. Our youngest child has his plain. Both sons and dad love plain oats poured from the Quaker Oats drum, a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg on it, heated with water and then blobbed with butter and made a lake and continents by milk. Spoons of peanut butter set out on a small plate for all.

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