Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Breakfast at Cartier's

A scene from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s:”

Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?
Paul Varjak: The mean reds, you mean like the blues?
Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you're getting fat and maybe it's been raining too long, you're just sad that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of. Do you ever get that feeling?
Paul Varjak: Sure.
Holly Golightly: Well, when I get it the only thing that does any good is to jump in a cab and go to Tiffany's. Calms me down right away. The quietness and the proud look of it; nothing very bad could happen to you there. If I could find a real-life place that'd make me feel like Tiffany's, then - then I'd buy some furniture and give the cat a name!

A scene from Breakfast at Cartier's:

It’s the first time I’ve gotten up and cooked breakfast in a very long time. My 15-year-old son Alex, requests “pigs-in-a-blanket” as his first hot breakfast.

Well, who knew he liked those? I don’t recall that I’ve ever witnessed him eating one -- anywhere. The request caught me off guard. I was expecting eggs, bacon and toast or something of that nature. But like Paul Varjak never had champagne before breakfast, and Holly Golightly had never walked the streets of New York in the morning, I’d never made pigs-in-a-blanket for breakfast. I’d never made pigs-in-a-blanket, ever!

Since this was my maiden flight into the permanent housewife arena, I spent the weekend shopping for ingredients to make sure I had breakfast covered anyway. In addition to pigs-in-a-blanket, I bought pancake mix, milk and eggs. Oh, yeah and bacon. What breakfast wouldn’t be complete without bacon?

I remember waking up as a child to the sound of bacon sizzling on the griddle and the smell wafting through the air as it beckoned me into the kitchen. The smell of coffee brewing is right on its heels, and it reminds me that it’s morning and something good awaits. Even though I didn’t really acquire the habit of drinking coffee every morning, I still love the smell of it as it calls to me from the kitchen. Of course, on the condition that someone else has already started brewing it before I pop one eyelid open is the key factor here!

I digress. I’d never made pigs-in-a-blanket before, so I thought through all my options. Regular hotdog wieners or Hillshire Farms Lit’l Smokies? Lit’l Smokies are cuter, so Lit’l Smokies it is. “Well, lo and behold,” as my Nannie would say, who knew there’d be choices? Beef ones, sausage ones, ones that didn’t specify (I assume chicken and pork of some combination) and some with cheese. I opted for beef. Alphabetically, beef came before all the others in my head. Besides, it was the first in the row. If that doesn’t work, we’ll just go right down the line until we find one that works. Even if I have to make pigs-in-a-blanket every day until I figure it out. Did I mention I’m a tad CDO?

CDO stands for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder for those of you who tend to call it OCD. CDO is the correct acronym for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder because it is alphabetized -- as it should be.

Anyhoo, after making my meat selection, crescent rolls were the next ingredient I knew I needed for the “blanket.” Pillsbury Crescent Rolls at that. I’m not sure my mom bought any other brand while I was growing up. Oh, she may have tried something else, but we always came back to Pillsbury. I can’t seem to make the switch to buy something else either. Seems like it would be right up there with being un-American or something. I like the way Pillsbury makes their biscuits and crescent rolls. So this was a no-brainer. Exactly what I needed.

So Monday morning finally dawns and I’m up and at ‘em in the kitchen. Aware that I do not have to go to work, I smile. That’s funny. I’ve never smiled about having to cook or get up at the crack of dawn before! (Not to mention that I’ve been awake since 3:32 a.m. either!). But I am pleasantly aware that I am humming too. Today, this is fun. I’ll take that, I literally mutter under my breath.

I pre-heat the oven just as the crescent roll label suggests, but then it occurs to me as I unroll the dough. A single Lit’l Smokie is going to be lost in all that dough. Oh, no! Well, good thing I got that MBA. I figure out pretty quickly that two Lit’l Smokies fit right into the wide end of the crescent roll and I don’t need to download any data into a spreadsheet for analysis. And voila!

Ten minutes later, my sleepy-eyed son wanders into the kitchen and says, “What’s for breakfast?”

“Pigs-in-a-blanket,” I reply, secretly feeling very smug because I had made what he wanted.

“It smells good,” he continues and I smile more on the outside.

I pour him a glass of orange juice and make a mental note that this is definitely better than Pop Tarts and scurrying off to work. Don’t get me wrong, Pop Tarts are wonderful and we both like them (I had a healthy dose of ‘em growing up too!). But this cozy repartee in the kitchen is awesome and I know instantly that I like it. I like it a lot!

“Needs cheese,” he quips. “What kind of meat is this?”

“Beef Lit’l Smokies,” I say.

“Beef is not a breakfast meat, Mom” he reminds me matter-of-factly. “Pigs should be breakfast meat -- like sausage or ham or bacon.”

Everyone’s a critic.

Breakfast at Cartier’s. I don’t need a cab, but it's definitely a place where nothing very bad could happen to you – I think.


Daya said...

I'm so enjoying this Kim! And I'm SO jealous of you! You're very brave for taking this leap of faith into the wonderful world!

Speaking of breakfast, when I was in 1st grade I HATED school. HATED it. Threw a fit and ripped off my clothes in the car every morning. My mother finally made a deal with me that if i would just go peaceably, I could have ANYTHING I wanted for breakfast. So I took her up on it. for the next 12 years I had chocolate ice cream for breakfast EVERY morning. I still have it when I wake up on a day that I have the 'mean reds.'

Bebe said...


Wonderful, I nearly snorted coffee when I read about CDO ( Mike is a bit CDO), and our children are are worst critics, according to Rach its a miracle I can walk upright. I much enjoyed. See you at Bonnie and David's Christmas Bash. I look forward to reading more.

:) brenda

cartier said...

Cheese does NOT go on a pig in a blanket. Whose child is this?

I applaude the selection of Pillsbury, but I have to agree with the boy, beef is not a substitute for "Pigs" in a blanket. But still, I am glad you are reaching out for your inner housewife. I am not really sure what a housewife does, but I am sure we will figure it out together.

Bon appetite!