Monday, January 9, 2012

Breakfast of Champions

I'm about to share my current breakfast obsession (current's really not the appropriate word since I've long been obsessed with this dish... but I digress). Like most of the posts on this blog, there's a quick story behind it.

There are two things you should know about me: 1. I am a lover of toast and 2. I am NOT a lover of butter. People normally associate the two together, and I used to as well, until my sister ruined my enchantment with that particular breakfast pair. When we were kids, my mom would make it for us every morning: hot toast slathered with melted butter, and goodness, was it amazing. I took my smearing on the lighter side while Ginny equated more with better (as most are inclined to do, I think). However, her method of eating said toast was as follows: she'd hold up a piece to her lips and suck all the additional butter off the top before eating the bread. It would create a greasy ring around her lips, and even as a child, I was so thoroughly disgusted with the glistening butter on her face, I stopped liking it. I stopped eating it.

I began to eat dry toast... for the next 20 years. What can I say? When food aversions are created in my psyche, they last an awful long time.

Around the age of 25, I learned of pan con tomate. A Spanish dish, pan con tomate is thinly sliced bread, toasted crispy, rubbed with garlic and tomato pulp, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt. It is delicious. DELICIOUS. Once I started making and eating it, I realized how much easier it was to have with a little somethin', somethin' on it and my love of toast with olive oil and salt was born.

I am a believer in gourmet finishing salts, Maldon being one of my favorite brands. I think their texture is superior to the average sea salt you can find at your local grocer, and don't even get me started on the iodized table variety: it is for baking and baking only. A little fleur de sel or smoked sea salt sprinkled on top of any dish adds just the right amount of salty pop, and I'll use truffle salt for snacks like popcorn or yes, even on toast (gourmet breakfast, yes please!). 

I started playing around with different combinations and eventually realized how creamy avocado is on, well, anything. When that green fruit is on sale, I don't start dreaming of guacamole; I start salivating for avocado lemon toast with smoked sea salt.

It's very simple. Get a piece of bread and toss it in the toaster.

This is a choose your own adventure scenario: the bread type doesn't matter and neither does how toasty it is (although I will say it will hold the avocado better if it's texture has a crunchy surface with a chewy middle). We had a sourdough boule from TJ's laying around, but I often make this with grain toast.

While your bread is toasting, cut up your avocado and lemon. I find that half an avocado split between two pieces is perfect, and the juice of half a lemon works for both as well.

Once your pieces pop out, layer them with the thinly sliced avocado and douse them in a good squeeze of lemon. Top with a nice pinch of salt (and pepper if you so choose). This is the preferred salt I mentioned previously:

And voila (or viola, if you're inclined to string instruments)! A scrumptious, satiating breakfast is yours for the taking.

Don't be dubious of this if the combo sounds a little off to you. My BF spent the night at our place a few months ago, and she hesitated when I offered to make her some for breakfast. After some prodding, she finally said yes and couldn't believe how tasty it was.

En serio.

I should also mention it pairs perfectly with a cup of PG Tips tea with milk and sugar.

And how.

Happy Monday and happy eating...

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