So much of the drama we go through regarding food is purely learned behavior with no basis in the reality of what we physically actually need, like all things we have the capacity to do to the pornographic hilt.
I was thinking absently about being lazy and just ordering from one of the other breakfast cooks on-site. I sat & watched that thought go to a sandwich called a butty that he does with bacon & egg. & hm’d on this, my final fish day of this week.
Then I went “well I have my own bread & eggs, maybe later so *yawn’*…windsurf[get on line]” (& for the record, I won the whole being lazy thing because I postponed even making this decision until like 1245pm on this day off 🙂 )” I log in & a handful of posts from pages are referencing baconheadisms-of which I used to be a very vocal member. & they were funny. like, snort-funny, but the timing of them hitting had me still in this odd observe mode. I felt receptors going “Yes! Bacon! See~!it’s right there again! bacon!” but the tonality of it was so much higher than my actual hunger that it just was kinda weird.
In the end, when I finally got mojo’d up to go eat it was more a desire for this new bread i’d found than anything else. I couldn’t order the butty because they were my eggs & to also give him the bread was the equivalent of a fat husband in the 70s yelling at his browbeaten wife to make him a sandwich. I scrambled up some eggs, toasted the last normal piece of miche I had & sprinkled some mozzarella on it, piled on the eggs italian-style & tossed pepper, more mozz & sharp cheddar across them. the heel- which was like…imagine a robust dark hunk of moist, springy baguette- was smeared with sweet cream butter &,when I got upstairs, blessed with buckwheat honey alongside the virgin chai i’d warmed up[no dirty, filthy, sexy shot of espresso today. Rations, baby. I REFUSE to got through more than ONE can of illy a month on home use. Just below the radars of addiction lol].Yep. Heaven on flipping Earth.
It was only after this ecstasy had relaxed into me & was having ways with my person that I remembered i’d actually had a piece of bacon yesterday- I’d made beef Pho from scratch & used a gutted & slashed bacon-wrapped tenderloin as the beef…using the bacon to get the bottom started off right. The memory of it was being toyed with by the possibilities around today, but had nothing to do with what I was really craving.
Which brings us back from the circus of phony taste sensations to the bread…which was obtained at a circus. On January 27th Martial Law quietly went into effect in the hearts and minds of however many people actually LIVE in New Orleans, thanks to the nuts at the major news outlets who screamed that the end of the world was coming for us in the bayou. End of the world meaning “One to three inches of snow accumulation is expected for tonight due to Snowstorm Leon.”
Being from Cleveland, it went in one ear & out the other. Folks can barely drive down here in the humidity, so the idea of them dealing with an inch of snow was more comical than anything else. I went about my errands, one of which had been to pick up some interim basics from Rouses.
Ok. Not true. Truth-telling? I’d had caciucco stew for breakfast, and the craving for smoked Salmon that i’d put off prepping for the day before UTTERLY CONSUMED ME. Now That, unlike the bacongate of this morning was a true craving, Consumptive, mind-altering, inner-children falling out crying to their boyfriends all over the place. now…I’ve been Hungry before. I’ve been young chick in nyc on fumes hungry before. But This LOX mess that nailed me Monday was a Monster. It was funny- but I was like “Dammmmmmn~!” finally getting what Chocolate cake can do to folks lol.
The guardian my innerchild had been mopey-crying to picked us up & carried us out the house to run errands in the aftermath of finding out that the ONLY SPOT IN NOLA THAT DOES A FOR REAL BAGEL & LOX WAS closed on Mondays. It was all a blur up until the post office, a few blocks downwind of the last place i’d had a subpar bagel & nova conglomeration AND Rouses. I hedged my bets & picked Rouses, opting to pay to play a riff than to pay to be played by a rip-off.
They were blasting Janet Jackson’s Pleasure Principle as I was rolling thru the aisles trying not to dance TOO much primarily because the aisles were CLOGGED full of folks. Polite ones. but just a LOT of bodies. No way to go “sailing” without running into an old lady in a motor-cart. I kept absently going to myself “Why are so many people here at 3pm on a Monday? Is it the 1st?’ stuff like that. I guess I wasn’t noticing the ones running past like muppets looking for water or carts- I was too busy imagining the thing I was gonna do to that smoked salmon. I get in line-10 or less, baby!-& two other cholas roll up behind me, one holding all 10 of her items in her hands, struggling.
I offered the top of my cart &, chatty, I went “Every one & their mom is here today, huh?” She said” Thanks! Yeah, there were no carts when I got here.”
I was shocked. “Why?”
“Because of the storm~” the chola behind her said.
I looked around with new eyes in awe as it sunk in. They were LOSING their flipping MInds in every other checkout aisle. Completely sold, hook, line, sinker. “Blizzard proportions. All is Lost. Save Yourselves!!” written on the panicked trying to be polite visages all around us.
“Temperature is supposed to drop from this 60 to 20 tonight~” said one of the women, who’d come out to make sure she had pita chips to nosh on through it.
“It’s CRAZY:O)! I moved from Kansas City to avoid this & looks like I got move further south lol.” she said, also with simple, easy-breezy things to chill at home with. I was suddenly very glad i’d grabbed a bottle of pinot noir for my “magazine-in” that night.
I headed back to the commune, warning co-workers- all of us from up north- to go get stuff because these people had lost their ever loving minds & thought the end of the world was coming. I’d gone to bed thinking i’d be waking up to all kinds of wintry- shit I didn’t come down here for- wonderland mess. Naan a flake fell overnight. When I got up I found out they’d ALL thought ” eh~” & headed into the fray at different intervals. The responses from the frontlines later in the day were hilarious.
“It was Like Armageddon!!!-”
“There was not a can of tomatoes left at rouses by 7pm. No mustard, 1 beat-up pepper-”
“If you hear it’s going to snow for two days & you have to do THIS to Rouses because you have NO food in your house, you need to rethink how you live lol!”
But we all laughed at how our families would probably do the same thing if they said “Hurricane in Pennsylvania.” Everyone was comically disgusted by how Heart of Darkness the whole storm had been hyped.
Wait-OMG- this was About bread!
ok- but I had to describe the circus said bread was stumbled upon in. I’d warily grabbed a loaf of Pepperidge Farm Rye from the packaged bread section because it had the shortest list of ingredients-2.5″ instead of like 3″- foodbabe would’ve been shaking me because she’d just posted something on them that I couldn’t fully remember so I tossed the sale loaf in my cart. I had a wine budget & got a great deal which made me dance a bit down towards the in-house bakery section. I absently got drawn to this odd pack-it was the earlier mentioned Old World Miche- & what i’d saved on the wine was the difference between it and the PF, price-wise. BUT…it was Organic, locally produced…and had a line and a half of ingredients, all that I could spell, say & recognize as actual foodstuffs.
It’s the best bread I’ve had since I got to town the first time in 2008. Not just here. This bread was even better than the bread in Montreal- Montreal has some GREAT bread[props]. And there was a stint IN nyc between 2008 & now. Nothing to outdo it in this era. The name of the place is Breads on Oak. Adding that to the Best Baguette I’ve had in NOLA since I’ve been here from Gracious Bakery… Now… we got a show going on!
In the end, no snowstorm. But I had roast beef & eggs for breakfast & made Pho from scratch for lunch. And when I almost gave up my wildcard meal for an absently unconscious makeshift roast-beef sandwich[on Miche w/tatsoi & spicy mustard] dinner last night, i’d caught myself, tossed the beef back in the freezer & pulled out a veggie burger to stay the course. & it was delicious. I Even got to approach working a double like Tina Turner in Mad Max beyond the Thunderdome, which was mighty cool in a house full of disgruntled, stranded guests yowling “but there’s Nooo Snow~” after all flights, buses & trains were cancelled.
I’m sure the cooking with love was going on hardcore across the parishes in households full of kids out of school until Friday, all hunkered down with comfort bowls of gumbo and jambalaya in front of all kinds of reality TV and the weather channel, expectant, hopeful & terrified all at the same time. Because another thing brought up by a co-worker was his friend who was born and raised here who’d seen snow twice in his life and not until his twenties. In a weird way…it reminds me of the renewed surprise of the taste of beef after making it special again. I personally KNOW a two-year old who just got to make her first snowman ever. With what fell yesterday. Eventually. You forget the memories you take for granted until they are reframed & you get to see someone still able to enjoy what you have made your way through all the way.
It doesn’t mean I need to go make a snow angel. There’s NO Snow, for one lolol. But why deny them the joyful, albeit utterly over the top dramatic madness of preparing for the opportunity to get to make their 1st snowballs ever? We had our wintry campiness in Cleveland four months out of every Year if we were Lucky to not have six. Going to school in two feet of it, cussing, for twelve years…being in the bathroom listening to WZAK hopefully, dangling over the heater as you looked out the window at White fn Madness you KNEW Somebody was going to Have to shovel, thanking GOD for big Brothers & Fathers to be the first guard on that shit… feeling sorry for parents running out the house at 7am Just to turn ON the cars so they could heat up while they got ready for work….it being too cold to shovel or go to school, but the first thing done as SOON as the parents hit the road for work & we’d climbed Leisurely out of bed & gorged on cereal…was snow-suiting up to go lay in the snow & wave arms and legs like mental patients trying to make the biggest wings…Trudging over to “The Hill,” armies of puffy snow-suit people with all kinds of sleds dragging behind them to fling themselves like madmen into what we all damn knew was a flipping Ravine in the center of the city, the adults acting crazier than us as they tumbled down to cement breakers padded with three months plus fresh snow…
If you haven’t had to wear TWO snow suits, an undercoat, an overcoat, a scarf that was gonna get wet from your breath hidden under the wraps of the secondary scarf to keep the wind out, a hat Under the hood of the first coat peeping up out of the collar of the secondary coat, gloves, mittens on top of gloves, two pairs of your own socks then a pair of winter socks from the truck at your dad’s factory job… a backpack with a trapper keeper and all kinds of books, lunchbox and a change of shoes…then had to RUN for the bus-stop, leaping over hurdles of shoveled drive-way snow left by people with cars who clearly forgot kids had to walk to the bus on things called sidewalks or get slowly plowed by frickin sludge-driving angry adults refusing to be late for work due to stopping to pick up padded kids they’d slow-motion slid into like bowling pins…then climbed up the stairs of buses like you were atop Mount Everest… & proceeded to want to gang up & off the BusDriver for blasting the heat from a place of pure evil, knowing full well you and all your bad-assed little friends that drove them crazy all year were ROASTING in the parental layers you’d been suited up in… crowds of overheated children stumbling off the bus at school and collapsing into steaming piles in the snow before heading in to class…that one kid dumb enough to take off layers cussing as he got shoved off the bus jacketless…
…Then you haven’t been blessed with the joys of being a kid in a place that gets Real Great Lakes right over there is Canada…winter lol.
yeah…Let them make the possibilities of their first snows a circus if they want to.
Strange days, interesting times, as long as we have our bread and circuses we’ll be fine.
for the breads I was chirpy about, check them out here:
http://graciousbakery.com/ & http://www.breadsonoak.com/Menu.html
You can pick up Gracious Bakery breads at the Hollygrove Urban Farm and Market, and Breads on Oak at the Mid-city Rouses in addition to their home locations.
“Old World Miche/ The classic Medieval French bread even before the baguette, Miche is a country sourdough made from organic high extraction flour and an organic rye, wild-yeast starter. It has a delicious, thick, crunchy crust with an airy interior. In the 12th century, the pistores (boulangers) baked them in communal ovens. The deep crust protects the soft, moist interior.”