the bounty of morning

In ALL, FOOD LOVE by Stephanie Klein50 Comments

Manhattan feels like Paris this morning, except people are ordering everything-bagels with cream cheese instead of petit pain au chocolat (thanks to those who pointed out the correct spelling).  People are walking, dressed in quilted spring colors, Burberry cuffs peeking out, a bent arm carrying a Fendi Spy bag.  I’m sitting in Guy & Gallard, drinking fresh pink grapefruit juice.  The woman beside me, a foreigner with a lot of “gulk” sounds in her language, is sipping nectarine juice as I gulp mine.  Bitter, tart, and irresistible.  I think it takes a distinguished palate to favor grapefruit juice to orange.  It’s more sophisticated.  Orange is too easy and obvious.

I love the idea of milk bottles.  They’re right up there with baskets of brown eggs.  Farm in the city.  I want to own milk bottles, miniature ones, for milk at breakfast, or on my desk, beside the laptop, filled with seasonal flower stems.  I like old-fashioned quaint, but I don’t like antiques.  Which makes no sense, but I’m okay with that. 

I think breakfast should be glorious, even a simple sample of oatmeal should be served in a crock with a heavy spoon.  Shallow bowls of soft brown sugar and pots of stewed fruits at the ready. Soft-boiled eggs served on square plates, garnished with a tumble of parsley.  I ordered an egg white omelette with chicken-sausage, roasted red peppers, and caramelized onions.  Sweet vegetables.  The onions stripped so thin, they looked like cappellini.  I will roast more peppers in hill country, will save pockets of sausage from dinner, crumbled for the next day’s breakfast.  Caramelized onions are good on anything because they’re rich and sweet, textured, adding depth to the simple.  Today I will enjoy the simple things.  I will look up for the moon, stand in a spotlight of sun, and I will inhale with a purpose.  I’ll notice the breeze through my clothes, in my hair, through me.  I will slow down and enjoy every pleasure today has. This day is going to be delicious.


  1. I don't care for orange juice not because it's obvious but because it's treacly.

    Careful mixing some meds with grapefruit juice, though, as studies imply the results can be disastrous:

    "Numerous studies now show the interaction of grapefruit juice with many widely used medicines. Most interactions have no serious consequences, but a few do."

    (When I read this post, I thought, "Good for you!" I hope today is fabulous.)

  2. Fresh grapefruit juice only. Never the bottled shit. I hope you treasure this day and put it in your memory forever…New York in the spring. Not too many days left…

  3. I know I pay for it, but it is with a delicious sense of anticipation that I open the milk box on Monday mornings to find my freshly delivered milk, eggs and bread. It's a pampering not unlike getting that every other week manicure/pedicure, facial, and house cleaned by professionals. Enjoy your delicious day.

  4. Your post reminded me so much of my lovely daughter. Ashley is newly 11 years old and deafblind. What you wrote describes her entire approach to life. She, and now you, remind me how glorious each day can be…thank you!

  5. Breakfast is my favorite meal for going out. Go to the local diner, say hello to people you might know. You know the servers, and the good ones know what you like. Noisy, read the paper if you like, the waitress re-filling your coffee without you having to request it. Compared to this, restaurants and other meals seem too too stuffy, confined, and formal.

    And OJ and grapefruit juice have nothing in common and should not be compared. There is a time for both.

  6. God how lovely. I cannot wait until your book comes out! Now in the late summer everyone, not early July :( but that is the world of book publishing
    I can't wait to read the advanced copy– out 5/1. I will give everyone my early reviews, sure to be RAVES.
    Stephanie safe travels this upcoming weekend/weeks. I know you leave soon, no?

  7. I think it takes a distinguished palette to favor grapefruit juice to orange. It’s more sophisticated.

    Holy shit, you really are a pretentious wanker sometimes.

    And if you're that concerned with appearing "sophisticated", you should probably know that it's pain au chocolat.

  8. Beautiful post today, capturing all the greatness of food, farm fresh, and breakfast favorites. I was in a similar mood this morning, waxing on food in general and how much I love it. How cool that the feel is just in the air.

  9. Re: the grapefruit juice… OK, leave it to a dorky med student to comment, but be aware that grapefruit juice (as well as watercress) is a potent inhibitor of enzymes in your body that "digest" certain medications. The result is a higher level of medications in your body– sometimes dangerous. Not always, but sometimes.

    The upside? Grapefruit juice also inhibits the breakdown of alcohol… so that vodka & grapefruit y'all might be ordering is actually worth more for the money!

  10. Can someone please explain the concept of an egg white omlette, or egg white anything really, to me? I am far away in australia, yes, but still… The first time I heard in mentioned, (almost certainly in a trashy womens mag?) I thought it was a pathetic attempt at calorie banishment by the far too self conscious set. But now that you have mentioned it Stephanie I am unsure if I am right about that. You LOVE food. And surely, a person so self restricting as to eat an omlette without the egg, would never eat chicken sausage with it. So what is it? It can't taste good. No, does it? Does it get made with other stuff in it?

  11. that's a nice post. springtime always makes me sniff the air when i step outside my door in the morning and feel reborn with possibilities that i forgot in the long months of winter.

  12. Beautifully written. It’s the simple things about life that a lot of us take for granted. I’m glad you see it right in front of you…you see the beauty in so many things that are so invisible to others.

    Not only that, you really know how to wet someone’s appetite with the most amazing words—I’m on a diet woman! You need to stop now! (Sorry—venting again…)

    Great post! Enjoy the beautiful days while they last!

    So when we going out for brunch???

  13. The eggwhite omlette with chicken sausage sounds divine. I can't do the grapefruit juice. I'm not that sophisticated yet.

  14. I made oatmeal from the packet this morning, cinnamon roll flavored. I make it with a minimal amount of water& add some vanilla so its more like crisp topping you know like apple crisp. Then I cover it with warm heavy cream. Its like dessert for breakfast. I got two bites in before I got caught up in getting ready for work. My boyfriend however eats his luxuriously watching SportsCenter. But I did wear strappy peeptoe flats today so all is not lost.

  15. "Can someone please explain the concept of an egg white omlette, or egg white anything really, to me?"

    No, it cannot be explained, at least by me.

  16. Oh my! If you like fresh grapefruit juice while eating in a cafe in New York, wait till you drink it ice, ice cold, sitting by the pool in Austin on a hot summer day. Sublime!

  17. I love how sometimes it's the simplest pleasures in life that can make us happiest. I think it's a small sign of contentment.

  18. nicely said! i love spring days like that when everything just feels right…although, i agree that the grapefruit juice comment was a bit pretentious…but who really cares

  19. I love fresh squeezed pink grapefruit juice with right from the over popovers and raspberry butter. MMMMMMmmmmm. OOh – or a heavy crust country bread – toasted – with sweet butter and ginger jam.

    Have you tried pomegranate juice – really delicious too.

  20. you're so right about grapefruit juice. i love it.

    i love that you have such a huge heart for food.


  21. This is a pretty inspiring post. It made me look at my breakfast this morning with different eyes. Crackers and cheese never looked so beautiful :)

  22. If you're looking for miniature milk bottles, a reasonable facsimile can be had at your local scrapbook store for about $7. Head on in there and ask about the Prima flowers. They are little paper flowers that come in the most adorable bottles. Their ad read.."got flowers".

  23. Stephanie,
    I don't know which is closer to you in Austin or if you've heard of this little slice of heaven, but memorize these words: Central Market. Total paradise of a grocery store. Like Whole Foods amplified beyond just organic. It's like row after row of everything you just wrote about. O especially love their fresh squeezed juices. Like Ginger Carrot and grapefruit. Enjoy.

  24. I've never understood egg white omelettes either, though everyone in the US seems to order them. Maybe you can feel better about having one with cheese and sausage if you forgo the yolk?

    Stephanie, I am inspired to start my morning off right tomorrow. It is supposed to rain, but I think rainy mornings are quite Parisian. Maybe I'll wake up early and have my tea in an actual cup while I relax at home instead of trying to manage a flimsy paper cup and a nutrigrain bar while I drive to work.

  25. I agree, I don't think orange juice and grapefruit juice can be compared. Grapefruit juice to concentrated OJ maybe but I think there is a time and place for both grapefruit juice and orange juice… Nothing like fresh squeezed orange juice and all its pulpy goodness.

  26. Stephanie,do you know if your book will be translated in Italian? Maybe it's tooearly to say but I'm really looking forward to read it(and understand!).

  27. I am writing from Italy in Milan, today my breakfast has been tropical fruit juice and one brioches to the chocolate… all under the warm sun of one primaverile Milan… I love spring…kiss to milan

  28. Egg white omelette and chicken sausage?? YUK!! Real egg omelette and real (pork and pork fat) sausage cooked crisp for me – anything else is phony. And I make my oatmeal from Quaker Oats Old Fashioned oatmeal (not instant or flavored packets) and real whole milk (not water), plus a little real maple syrup and real cream to get it to the right richness. Now that's luxury for a springtime morning.

  29. The book, as of right now, will certainly be available in Italian. It will be translated into Italian, Russian, and German, as of today, and available for sale in the English language in India, Australia, Canada, and the UK… and well, here, in the US.

    I also feel the need to address this egg white bit. I'm 100% fine with the "you're pretentious" bit. I can be. I don't care. I actually think it's funny. But the egg white bit needs some explaining. I have never really ordered just egg whites before. I usually order one whole egg with two egg whites, just for cholesterol reasons. I don't get egg whites with cheese and bacon, using cholesterol to replace missing cholesterol. Yolks are where the flavor is at. They're also where all the fat, cholesterol, and calories are. Egg whites are only 15 calories to the yolk's 60. I know this from Fat Camp. Do I really care? No. Sometimes, though, I like to mix it up. And I actually enjoyed the fluff and purity of just the whites. It made me feel like I was eating "clean." Made me feel like I was trying to be healthy. And no, I'm not pregnant.

  30. Whatever, man. I've ordered egg whites and I'm not ashamed to admit it. Egg white omlettes can be very tasty. And I am enough of a freak to have egg white omelets with ham and bacon – just because the lack of yolk really did reduce my cholesterol intake sufficiently for me to enjoy the others. Sometimes life can't be all about gluttony and you have to sacrifice one for the other. Other times, I'll just go to town and eat everything – yolk and all. The one yolk to 3-4 egg white ratio is very cool too. I learned about that during college. I work out a lot and egg whites are really good protein, but they taste better, oftentimes, with some yolk. I don't care what anyone thinks about it either. God, I can't believe people sometimes.

  31. It is funny funny when people like Jen read into things. This is writing. It is playful. It is fun. Get a life, Jen. Why do you think it is serious to write about grapefruit juice?

  32. ah the hill country. your post brought back timely nostalgic memories of visiting my grandparents in Austin, and my grandfather's amazing fresh cooking from ingredients all picked from the farmers market, with quail and venison from the last season. Savour the change of living venue like you savour your food. i think those who are not afraid of initiating change will enjoy life so much.

  33. I've lived on egg whites this week. They're great. I love them. I cannot be persuaded to 'diet' any other way.

    When I feel fat, I have egg whites for a week, two every three hours, and they satisfy me. (I do have to admit that I get freakishly excited if there is ever any leftover bit of yellowy-yoke left inside…)

    The fact that they're only 15cals (i didnt know this) is even better.

  34. You sounded hungry while writing this and now you've made me so. Seems like you're soaking up every last bit of Manhattan before you go. I can picture you doin' the Mary Tyler Moore thing. You're gonna make it after all.

  35. I hope I didn't offend you by asking if you were pregnant. You just seemed in such an amazing mood in your post and you seemed to be appreciating everything…which happens when you find out you are pregnant. As I am sure you know. Makes me feel good though, knowing that you read my post. Is that silly? kat

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