Skagit River Ranch bacon.
Whenever we go to the city for a farmers’ market, we head straight for the Skagit River booth. Eiko comes from around the table, gives a cursory wave to us sometimes not even that and heads straight for Little Bean. She smiles and pokes dimples and claps her hands. So does Little Bean. We stand by, admiring, and then buy a pound of bacon from the other woman working the booth.
Yakima asparagus, snap peas, and Walla Walla sweet onions, picked two days before we ate them.
A retired couple on the island has begun their summer business again. They have connections with 20 farmers, in Yakima and Puyallup, with whom they talk each week. He drives to Yakima every Thursday to pick up bushels of produce, and she drives to Puyallup. They come home with cherries, strawberries, fresh garlic, and everything ripe that week. And then they set up a stand on the main intersection of town and sell it to the locals. Cash or check only, please.
Last Friday, after buying a pound of these snap peas, Danny sneaked a couple of snap peas from the produce section of the grocery store, so we could compare the taste. I expected them to taste flat on the tongue, nothing as vibrant as the ones picked more recently. Instead, they were so bloated with over-ripened sugars that I couldn’t finish the entire snap pea. I never expected to be disgusted by the sweetness of a snap pea.
Olsen Family farms red bliss potatoes.
We love Brent Olsen’s bushy beard, his shy smile, his weathered hands. And we love the potatoes he grows.
Eggs from Dana’s chickens, ten minutes from our house.
My wonderful sister-in-law, Dana, has a brood of chickens full of personality. Dana feeds these chickens a complex, balanced diet. She’s a talented veterinarian. She knows what she’s doing. The chickens respond by producing enormous eggs with yolks orange as roasted butternut squash. Or maybe they’re just mimicking the color of their carrot-orange chicken house, which has a painting of Ed Norton on the side. (That’s my brother’s work.)
We buy all our eggs from Dana now, to help pay for that feed. After starting to eat eggs from Dana’s chickens, Little Bean refuses to eat the eggs we occasionally buy from the grocery store. It cracks us up she purses her lips and turns her head away, after the first bite. We have to agree.
Danny in the kitchen, flipping eggs over easy.
When he was 20, Danny cooked breakfast in a family restaurant, with a bar full of colorful locals, in Breckenridge. This is where he learned to make eggs over easy. There’s a muscle memory, a swirl, a kick back on the balls of his feet. I love watching him make those eggs. When he does, he watches the pan, closely. When the eggs flip easily, a glistening whole without a yolk breaking, he always says, “This is going to be a great day.” It usually is.
About 11 am, the baby in her highchair, the two of us full of coffee, ready to eat.
We’re ready. We take our first bite.
Yeah. This having to eat gluten-free really stinks, doesn’t it?
What’s the story of your breakfast?
A continuation of that coverage is in this On Health podcast, which contains an interview I did with Alison Aubrey, the health reporter for NPR.
(And if you want to hear a story about life doubling back, it turns out that Ms. Aubrey produced the NPR piece on celiac in 2005 that my friend Beverly heard on the radio, and then called me to tell about it. That piece is what led me to ask for a celiac test. Four years later, I’m doing an interview with that same reporter. Wow.)