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Smoothie for a Glutton

Twenty years ago, Jim Harrison wrote that “one of the main causes of death is fretting about your diet.” Wise words and I hope to avoid sailing too close to the wind as I offer what I think is the healthiest recipe in my repertoire.

Restaurant openings, new menu launches, and food truck competitions offer delicious slabs of pork belly, cheese-covered bread, and deep-fried everything but can leave something to be desired nutritionally and digestively. This is the breakfast smoothie I make the day after my consumption of food (and drink) has blown my recommended daily calorie intake out of the water by two or three times. (more…)

Potato Tortilla

Potatoes, onions, and olive oil flavour this national egg dish of Spain.

You might be surprised that “un espresso, por favor” and “una Estrella, por favor” sound quite similar when passed through the imperfect filter that is my flawed Spanish. I can tell you that having thought I said the former I was surprised to turn around and find a bottle of one of Spain’s most popular beers waiting for me. At 8:30 AM.

“What the hell?” I thought, “it’s Spain and judging by the age of my fellow breakfast-imbibers one beer won’t be lethal.”

Beer wasn’t a common feature of my breakfasts in Spain last month but tortilla patatasĀ definitely was. Even more than paella or gazpacho this frittata-like egg preparation is the ubiquitous, national dish of Spain. It anchors the simple breakfast of pastries, small sandwiches, and coffee that many neighbourhood taverns use to extend their revenue-making hours into the pre-siesta half of the day. (more…)

Pancakes with Kentucky Fried Chicken

Bits of fried chicken skin in a stack of pancakes.

Fried chicken and waffles, like they do it at The Stockyards, are a classic duo that I wanted to see if I could improve upon. It’s pancake Tuesday this week and waffles would be a fine stand-in–whether as a last indulgence before the deprivation of Lent or just for the breakfast-for-dinner thrill–but I’m not sure they’re an ideal pair. Perhaps weekly eaters of fried chicken and waffles have developed some especially delicate approach. I haven’t and halfway through the meal it looks like a toddler has had an especially vigorous food tantrum.

Also waffles are light and crisp and need to be eaten quickly. Fried chicken has bones and is a finger food and that doesn’t match well with waffle’s buddy syrup.

Not only do I think pancakes would be a better match but I wanted to find a way to make fried chicken (of all things) more indulgent. Why not take the work out of it and focus on the best part by crusting and frying only the skin? A gluttonous version of popcorn chicken. (more…)

French Toast with Legs

It’s not a secret around these parts that I don’t really like breakfast. Never have. Since high school a spoonful of peanut butter has been an integral part of more of my breakfasts than I care to count. In fact, before this post Food With Legs had 20 posts in the Vegetables section but no section for breakfast.

A large part of why I have avoided writing about breakfast is that I didn’t really like eggs as a kid. The texture, the taste, even the appearance made them no-gos for me. But I’ve come around.

Baked eggs, fried eggs, omelettes, and frittata are now all part of my regular rotation. This weekend, with the help of a package generously provided by the Egg Farmers of Ontario I took a stab at knocking another breakfast item off the list of Foods I Hate: french toast. (more…)