Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Celebrating President's Day with a European Breakfast

September, last year, Tiffany and I took the “trip of a lifetime” to celebrate our 40th birthdays and 15 years together.  We stayed in Barcelona for a few days and then went on a Mediterranean Cruise.  It was fantastic.  It was especially incredible that it was before I got laid off…otherwise not sure we would have done it.  I’m telling you this because of our breakfast yesterday.  It seemed fitting to celebrate President’s Day with a European breakfast…or at least our favorite breakfast from Barcelona.  Vive El Presidentes de Americano!
We stayed in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona.  It was AMAZING.  There was so much to see we opted to do an open-air bus tour.  These are great because you can ride around in the bus and snap pictures of the architecture and people doing weird European things.  As they say, when in Rome (or in this case, Spain) act as the Romans do when they aren’t in Rome.  In other words, act like a tourista.
At any rate, before we went on our open-air tour of the city with all the other Americanos.  We stopped to have breakfast.  There are sidewalk cafes everywhere.  You can see in the windows and when we see pastries we stop.  In fact, I have a tattoo on my back that reads, “I Brake for Pastries.”  It was the 80s, I was in the Merchant Marines, seemed like a good idea…you know everyone has a tattoo on the back story.  Anyway, we went inside and promptly ordered a completely French breakfast in Spain.  We didn’t care.  I had a fanny pack full of one dollar bills and we were going to eat what we could actually say without sounding like las Americanos stupido.  Pretty sure we fooled them.  We had French press coffee and croissants with thinly sliced ham and baby Swiss cheese. (Isn’t that just like the Swiss to horn in on our French breakfast in Spain?) Don’t worry we did eventually have chocolate con churros, but we weren’t inclined to mess up our breakfast in Spain with a traditional Spanish breakfast just yet.  Our croissants and coffee were so good!  If you haven’t had French press coffee….you are really missing out.  And the croissants, holy light dough creations – it was the best roll I had ever put in my mouth and I am a lifetime connoisseur of carbohydrates. I even have a tattoo on my ass that reads, “I Back Up for Carbs.”
When we got back home, Tiffany was set on getting a French press coffee maker.  She got one for Christmas.  So from time to time, I like to surprise her with that so good breakfast we had in Spain.  You MUST get the right croissants for this.  The typical grocery story variety will not do.  You have to find a really really good bakery.  You are going to spend more, but some things like croissants are worth it.  I get mine at Continental Bakery in Mountain Brook.  I also get very thinly sliced ham and baby Swiss from the grocery.  You really only need one slice of ham and one slice of cheese per croissant.  Americanos like to pile that on…resist the urge.  You also need good coffee (preferably grinding your own).  We use Café du Monde coffee.  We never use this coffee in our regular coffee maker…it is special for the French press.  Once you have all this you are good to go.  Trust me and my fanny pack…you won’t be sorry.

1 comment:

  1. We had never used a French press until we got over here--our landlords left us one in our flat, and that's ALL Ele uses. We never drink coffee any other way now. Haha. Look up an English breakfast, fyi. It might be something you'd like to try, but prepare yourself for a near heart attack ;)