Thanks to the many of you who’ve written to inquire about why the hell I haven’t posted in so long, and to check in on how Part II of my eye surgery went. To which I’m very happy to report: it went swimmingly! The lasik procedure was fast (maybe one minute per eye; I was in and out of there in about 90 minutes), completely painless, and just crazy interesting. Dr. Mark Mandel, maestro among maestro, is one of those exceedingly rare MDs who can not only explain his art to lay people like myself, he has the magical ability to put his patients — or at least this patient — at complete ease. It takes quite a bit to surrender and totally trust someone who props your eyes open with a speculum (so that you can’t blink), wheels you under a huge humming machine, and tells you with a soothing voice, “Don’t worry, but everything’s going to go dark now.” But he made it easy. He’s even become a matcha convert/evangelist!
For the first time in my life, I now wake up and marvel at the fact that I no longer need to fumble for my glasses. It’s an amazing feeling. Mandel even “optimized” my vision to give me perfect distance vision in one eye, and excellent up-close vision in the other. The brain just somehow deals with it. Night vision is the best — I feel like a raptor! Evolution has given birds of prey a high density of receptors and other adaptations that maximize visual acuity that I don’t actually have, but it sure feels like I do, given the contrast of what I had before. I’ll spare you any further rhapsody, but let’s just say that I am one happy raptor camper. One who’s been devouring some really great breakfast burritos of late.
I’m such a sucker for breakfast burritos. I don’t think I’ve ever had one I didn’t like. How wrong can one go with scrambling some eggs with various ingredients, wrapping it all up in a tasty local tortilla, and eating it with salsa?
Now granted, starting the day with a carb-load of corn, rice, and beans might not be the smartest or healthiest route to take. But that of course refers to the traditional morning burrito. In the breakaway version, we can stuff it with whatever we like.
It’s not a lightning-quick breakfast, and you’ll need two pans (instead of the optimal one), but the dish scales up quite nicely, so you can feed quite a few people with essentially the same amount of work as feeding just two. And we also suppose that you can get your hands on very good eggs, since their quality in this dish more less controls how good the final dish is.
The idea is very simple:
- saute vegetables in olive oil, salt and pepper with a generous hand
- prepare the Herby, Fluffy Eggs recipe outlined in the Breakaway Cook (quick version of that recipe: melt butter in stick-resistant heavy pan, gently stir eggs, yogurt, and plenty of fresh herbs, plus s&P)
- combine the veggies and eggs
- spoon into stovetop-toasted large flour tortillas
- wrap, inhale
It’s not really a sit-down, lingering sort of breakfast; it’s one best enjoyed with few table manners at all, when one is very hungry, not sort of hungry. You can easily scale the recipe up, by adding more veggies and more eggs (and more tortillas).
A final word on tortilla preparation: It’s good to lightly steam them, if you have time — this can be done first, by heating the oven to 250 and wrapping a few tortillas in a damp clean dishcloth, which goes inside a lidded casserole dish or pot. The idea is to not let the steam, once it’s created, escape, so you want a rather tight-fitting dish/lid. Alternatively, you can microwave them: stack them between layers of very damp/almost wet paper towel, and try not to let the paper towels catch on fire. You can also toast them in a dry cast-iron skillet, or place them directly on the gas burner, flame very low, and carefully flip them around (I just use my fingers, but tongs might be advisable) until they begin to lightly char. Use caution with this latter method, since they can burn/char easily from a moment’s inattention. It’s a great mindfulness exercise!