An older woman sat at the table next to us Sunday morning, sipping an iced tea and spooning dainty bites of soup. She seemed the kind of lady I’d love to get into a conversation with — spirited, with a lifetime of stories to share.
We’d found ourselves at the Stone Sparrow Cafe on State Street in Veazie, a small, off-the-beaten-path eatery with a comfort-filled menu of sandwiches, Benedicts, soups and more.
It was an unexpected and spontaneous stop, after finding our breakfast plans dashed. Our plan to finally try a downtown spot’s Sunday breakfast had been thwarted when we arrived as the kitchen was “transitioning to lunch.”
The disappointment was quickly quelled when we arrived at the Stone Sparrow Cafe though.
From the outside, the stone building is full of charm, like a fairy tale cottage with bright flowers outside inviting you in. As soon as we entered, we noticed the muffins, cakes and other goodies on the counter by the door. Apricot muffins, strawberry chiffon cake, coffeecake. It all looked good.
On the menu, traditional eggs Benedict caught my eye, and didn’t disappoint. The tangy lemony hollandaise sauce left me wishing it could be considered polite to lick the plate. But it’s not, and I didn’t. Flavorful, tender, well-seasoned potatoes, perfectly cooked eggs and a good cup of coffee make the whole experience excellent (so did the friendly staff).
As for the woman next to us, a woman from the cafe soon came and joined her for a cup of coffee and a chat. While they caught up, so did we. Around us, the din of conversation from a pair of moms talking about their kids and a family working on a crossword puzzle hummed merrily. It wasn’t where we expected to be, but it was wonderful all the same.
At home, breakfast has transitioned recently. For years, my kids have been in charge of preparing their own breakfasts, selecting from the bounty of fresh fruit, cereals, oatmeals and more that I kept there for them. But lately, tired of seeing the towering bowls of cereal day after day, I’ve started making breakfast again. Now big bowls of fruits, egg dishes and creative toasts like this one are making more frequent appearances.
This one is Avocado Toast with Tomato and Egg. And it’s heavenly.
Are you familiar with avocado toast? It’s smashed avocado served … predictably … on toast. And it’s delicious. You could use any bread, more toppings or just the avocado, have it warm all over or not.
This one is a favorite. It starts with giant English muffins. And while you can certainly find ones in the grocery store, or even the bread outlet, I highly recommend dropping into the Bangor Farmers Market for the freshly made ones from Donna’s Daily Bread. They’re big, fresh and locally made. All good things. Pick up some eggs from one of the vendors while you’re there too.
Hint: If you use smaller English muffins, this won’t serve 4 — use one English muffin per person then … and maybe make a sandwich for everyone.
While the English muffins toast, smash a big, ripe avocado with salt and pepper. I leave ours on the chunky side, but you can smash it as smooth as you like.
Then you spread that avocado goodness (make no mistake: this is smashed avocado, not guacamole — guac has citrus, tomatoes, onions and more) all over the toasted English muffins. Mmm.
A juicy tomato slice, and a warm fried egg finish off the toast. Creamy avocado, bright tomato, warm egg … it’s a perfect combination. Serve this with fruit, and breakfast is ready.
Have you tried anywhere new lately? Share in the comments!
- 2 large English muffins, cut open (such as the ones from Daily Bread)
- 1 avocado, pitted, peeled and mashed
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 4 slices tomato
- olive oil
- 4 large eggs
- Toast the English muffin halves.
- Meanwhile in a small mixing bowl, mash the avocado together with salt and pepper to desired consistency and flavor. Top each of the English muffins with ¼ of the mixture and a slice of tomato.
- In a small nonstick skillet, heat a bit of olive oil -- about 1 teaspoon should do it -- and crack the egg into the hot pan (into the oil). Cook, flipping once, until the white is set. Place the egg on top of the prepared English muffin. Repeat the egg steps for the remaining three eggs.
- Enjoy hot, perhaps even with a crack of pepper.