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Breakfast, Then Breakfast Again

August 29, 2009

Dear Caitlin,

Thankfully today’s forecasted storms were basically entirely confined to last night. I say “thankfully” because I had my heart set on going to this morning’s farmers’ market, the same one I went to last Saturday and at which I purchased that awesome basil and those wonderful rapini greens. So at nine o’clock this morning, with cloudy but dry skies overhead, I wiped off my rain-speckled bike seat and was on my way!

Because of the inclement weather, most of the vendors were moved inside, which I found actually pretty nice. There seemed to be more stands here this week than last week, with a marked increase in the number of baked goods sellers. Unfortunately, there were no more rapini greens to be found! I did, however, pick up two bunches of basil (for two soon-to-come killer pesto recipes, I hope), some bags of mixed greens for salads and sandwiches, yellow chard, some sweet, orange sunburst tomatoes (also for salads), and a little baked treat for later. And by later, I mean when I got home. Because of a twelve o’clock meeting I had with my program advisor, I didn’t really have time to prepare a more proper and involved Saturday morning breakfast, but I was able to get a nicely rounded breakfast in my tummy. Here’s what it looked like:

First Breakfast

Pink lady apple, toast with peanut butter, orange chocolate chip scone, and tea: pretty good breakfast, no?

After this, I was off yet again, this time into the campus area for my meeting. Afterwards I swung by Canadian Tire (from what I can tell, the Canadian K-Mart) to pick up some food containers and the Toronto Reference Library to return a book and do some leisure reading. By the time I was ready to head home, the morning’s clouds had completely parted and the day actually felt warm. So much for weather forecasting.

As the evening approached, my hunger returned, and so I prepared a meal I had long been anticipating. The inspiration came from this post from Another Bites the Crust, although I did not really follow the recipe that closely. Mostly, I was intrigued by the idea of vegan breakfast-y meal of tofu, grits, and greens. But instead of ABTC’s suggested tofu steaks, I chose to use the local Ying Ying Soy Food‘s tofu bacon strips. What are these, you ask? Well, here are some pictures:

Tofu Bacon Uncooked

Tofu Bacon Uncooked Closeup

As you can see, they are basically compressed tofu sheets. The first thing I thought upon handling them was that they felt just like bacon: a little greasy with a smell that stays on your hands (and is still on my hands as I type this; I really need to use some soap!). These sheets are flavored, but only ever so slightly; the ingredients are simply soy sauce, sea salt, soy oil, and natural smoke liquid.

Now there are many ways Ying Ying Soy Food says you can eat these tofu bacon strips: raw and straight from the package, pan fried, or baked. I chose to pan fry the few strips I took out for today’s meal, so as to get the full bacon experience, and they fried well, becoming a nice brown. I could’ve perhaps made them crispier if I let them fry a little longer, but I was happy with them as they were. And here they are, complete with the accompanying cheesy grits, toast, and yellow chard underneath!

Second Breakfast

Second Breakfast 2

This meal was awesome! I loved the polenta, although mine wasn’t too cheesy (I didn’t have any vegan swiss cheese slices or anything, so I just tried adding some nutritional yeast in at the end, but I don’t think that did anything); it went especially well on the potato sourdough toast. The chard could’ve been sauteed a little better (I tried a dry saute this time rather than using any oil, but I think it could’ve used just a tad), but it was still delicious. And the tofu bacon was very tasty, although not very bacon-y. Actually, I think the taste is more closer to that of smoked turkey cold cuts, which is impressive since it’s tofu, but still a little weird. So I don’t know if I’ll buy this tofu bacon again, but I will definitely enjoy eating my way through the rest of the package, so look for further tofu bacon adventures throughout the week!

Until we eat again,

Willie

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