Three Breakfasts

I have so many favorite breakfasts. Most of them are from when I am traveling. I love waking up in faraway places and starting the day with delicious meals. Sometimes they are extravagant, like this one, from a recent trip to Lisbon.

Pancakes in Lisbon.
Pancakes in Lisbon.

I went down for breakfast on my own, as my wife wanted to keep on sleeping. “I’ll have the pancakes” — the only words I uttered that morning. Minutes later my plate of food arrived. The pancakes were crepe-like, buttery and moist, and yes, I used all that syrup. I drank way too much coffee and had the greatest of times simply enjoying this decadent food, talking to no one and not reading a single word of my book.

But the top-of-the-morning meals don’t always have to be so rich. Another breakfast I think about often is the one we had in Kep. The offering was straightforward — eggs any style, and fresh, home-baked, toasted bread. I don’t eat eggs, so I just had the bread. Without butter, with butter, with butter and preserves. It was amazing every which way. I ate the whole basket, and then asked for more.

Home-baked bread in Kep.
Home-baked bread in Kep.

But perhaps my favorite breakfast, and the one I always think about when I think about the ideal meal to have right after waking up, is the feast — yes, feast — we had in Bali.

Breakfast in Bali.
Breakfast in Bali.

It was over-the-top across the board. Every aspect of it was fresh and house-made, all of it was delicious, and there was too much of everything: Home-brewed coffee. Fresh fruit. Freshly-squeezed watermelon juice. Home-baked bread with house-made preserves and honey. Granola with just the right amount of crunch, salt and sweet. Yogurt that was thick and rich and I had never quite tasted anything like it before. I ate it all and still wanted more. I try to recreate this meal at home, and I fail every time, no matter what recipe I follow, the farmer market fresh fruit I select, or where I have carefully sought out the specialty ingredients. I guess we will just have to go back to Bali.