Sunday mornings, just like most people in Brooklyn, I wake up a bit hazy from the partying the night before. Clothes are scattered through out the house, Erin is dead asleep, somehow there is an empty bag of chips on the coffee table and the sheets are not on the right way at all. Yeah, we had a good night last night but we need food badly…and my head is spinning like a wooden merry-go-round. So I, and many of you, have that classic Sunday hangover dilemma.. “Do I order in or do I just brave the kitchen and cook myself?”
I tend to go with the later. I just force myself to drink down a Gatorade, take a few Advil, play some old Massive Attack, and get to work in the kitchen. Now this is not to say that I get all El Bulli up in this piece and cook up a dehydrated egg with a bottarga foam over a hash of purple potatoes & truffles, although that sorta sounds good right now. I look in my fridge and try to come up with something that I wont have to use too many pots, can just throw together and will satisfy me as well as give me some nutrition. This particular Sunday my brain was mush and I felt like I was doing calculus computations looking into my fridge and then all of a sudden… solution… Country Style Baked Eggs.
The first time I ever went to Texas was over a winter break many years ago. It was to be a quick trip but when I got to the airport to come back home my flight had been delayed for a few hours because of a snowstorm back East. Snowstorm… in NYC.. what a surprise. I was pretty pissed and just wanted to get back to my NYC apartment and get under the covers watching tv. Being that I was going to be stuck there for a few hours, I think it wound up being 6, I needed to eat. The person I was with, a native of Texas, took me over to the breakfast place they had in the airport. It smelled pretty good of sausage and carbs as we slowly walked over. I figured some scrambled eggs and bacon would hit the spot. Just as I was about to order she says “Have you ever had Biscuits & Gravy”. Now in my Yankee state of mind and upbringing I thought that meant some brown diner gravy with some Pillsbury instant biscuits. The thought kinda grossed me out and I wasn’t drunk yet to get into that. I said “No thanks, that sounds straight up nasty”. Then she proceeded to explain to me what real Biscuits & Gravy was. A very classic poor man’s dish from the South West found in truck stops where buttermilk biscuits are halved and covered with pork sausage cream gravy. It has both German and Cowboy influences and is a perfect example of the first American fusion food.
I placed my order for 3 biscuits smothered in gravy. As I waited I could smell the familiar baked bread smell that is so penetrating to our primitive senses of hunger. The sausage in the gravy was rich with sage, thyme and pepper deeply penetrated my northern sinuses. As I sat down it wasn’t the most appetizing looking dish, it really never is, but I could tell I was in for a treat. The creaminess of the gravy that is loaded with black pepper and bits of pork sausage layered over flaky buttermilk biscuits is a match made in heaven. That first bite was an awakening in Americana cuisine and simplicity. I will never forget that experience and flavor profile as long as I live.
If it’s a Sunday you should be having one of these. Especially with a little Ricks Picks Mean Beans thrown into the mix
I won’t post my recipe just yet but do know it incudes such things as horseradish, Sriracha & pickle brine.
Stay tuned for all new food entires in the next few weeks. For now here is a pic of a past brunch.