A friend of mine once told me that breakfasts at my place were “legendary”. I’m not one to brag (or maybe I am), but this actually might be true. You see, breakfasts at my place are not just about “breaking the fast” imposed on us by a good night’s sleep, it’s a wholesome experience.
I love to cook, I always have… for as long as I can remember. I went from playing with little play cooking utensils and grocery shopping for fake products to inviting family and friends for elaborate dinner parties cooked with carefully picked produce bought at local farmers markets. For me cooking is all about being able to materialize love and affection into something as basic as food. But there is something extra special about waking-up and making a good breakfast.
The funny thing is that I hate the morning. I hate it so much that if I hated everything related to it would be quite normal. But there is something special about a house that smells of coffee and fresh bread… it makes me feel fuzzy and warm inside. Having breakfast at my place is therefore a way for me to share that fuzzy feeling with the people that I care about.
I come from a family of breakfasters. Some of my best memories are linked to freshly squeezed orange juice, a nice cup of coffee and traditional chilean “pan con palta” (the ancestor of the current very hype avocado toast that is a must in every hipster restaurant and coffee shop. This is something that Chileans have been eating for as long as the country has existed).
Food is our common ground, a universal experience. – James Beard
People in my family travel a lot, they always did, and the family tradition has always been to receive those that are coming back with a breakfast constituted of things that they might have missed while they were away from home. For us, breakfast is a way of putting all the pieces of the puzzle together and turn that abstract notion of “home” into something you can feel, touch, smell and taste. A multi sensory wholesome experience one might say.
Since I moved away from home, and from those long, copious, delicious and diverse family breakfasts, I have found great pleasure in maintaining this family tradition. It’s what always makes me feel at home when I’m away from home, may this be at a beautiful Airbnb in Brooklyn or in my parents’ amazing house in Kathmandu. I go out of my way to bring a sense of togetherness to my breakfast (and brunch) experiences. This goes from knowing my guests’ likes and dislikes, to selecting the best products, to setting beautifully structured colorful tables. Taking those first mournful hours of the day to share a common passion for good food, interesting conversation and great company is my way of showing people how much a care.