The Comfort of the Bacon and the Egg

Wagons

 

For the better part of two years, I split my time between the nebulous Pacific Northwest (an unholy combination of Portland, Seattle and Roslyn, WA) and Australia (Melbourne and Sydney, to be exact, with a decided emphasis on Melbourne.)

My African astrology sign is the Traveler and my name literally means “foreigner.” Gypsy living is what I was built for (which is a little weird, considering that I’m supposed to be a comfort-driven, nesting Libra…) I have many musician friends who dread touring and I always want to trade places – I feel alive and energized when I’m on the road again. Anyone wanna buy me a plane ticket back to Oz?!?!

As much as I truly love Australia and am pining to get back (I miss hanging out with my dear friends, drinking flat whites, eating pumpkin as a savory ingredient and speaking sarcasm freely), I will admit to a little culinary homesickness when I leave America’s West Coast.

I was raised on Mexican food and – sorry, Australia – there is no such thing as a bean enchilada. On my fifth birthday, which was celebrated in Vegas because my cousins were playing in a football tournament, I actually scoped out a Taco Bell on our first day and when my folks asked me what I wanted for my birthday (and I said “Taco Bell”) they solemnly explained that we were in a strange city and didn’t know where to find one.

“Yes we do!” I exclaimed, and proceeded to guide them to said “restaurant.”

(It didn’t occur to me until decades — and thousands of recountings of this story by my relatives — later that allowing a five-year-old to guide you through the streets of Vegas is a little weird.)

What isn’t weird is the idea of comfort food, particularly if you’re on the road or living life as a gypsy. I have no shame in telling you that the hardest thing about being in the Southern Hemisphere for six months was the absence of Taco Bell. It’s my first stop every time I land on American soil.

While being deprived of Taco Bell is a bummer, getting to see awesome music is not. On my last trip down under, my friends turned me on to a fantastic Melbourne band called Wagons. If you think that twang(st) only applies to bands from the American South or Pacific NW, you’re as wrong as Glenn Beck on any given day.

Wagons rule, in a distinctively Australian, Nick Cave-meets-Americana, sun/rain-drenched, arid/awesome kind of way. They’re on our shores for SxSW and related events, which got lead singer Henry thinking about comfort food. And bacon. Mmmmmmmm – bacon!!!

For those of you in Seattle, come see Henry and his awesome band Wednesday the 23rd at Hattie’s or Thursday the 24th at the Sunset. Portlanders – you can catch them at the Bunk Bar on the 22nd. The rest of you can get a taste at www.myspace.com/wagonsmusic.

The Comfort of the Bacon and the Egg

Henry Wagons’ Bacon and Egg and Guacamole Sandwich

A lot of people think that going to a fast food chain when overseas is lame. It is. Why travel all the way to Spain in order to eat at McDonald’s?

But sometimes, the most strident and road-hardened Clydesdale has a bad day at the office, gets a splinter in its hoof and becomes a little lame. Its ok.

Don’t make a habit of it, but it is ok. Eat your cheeseburger and get back to a strict regimen of eating paella the next day.

It’s in this spirit I am going to talk about bacon and eggs. I am in a band (called Wagons) that has to travel a lot, and each journey takes many hours. We are from Australia. Getting around our own country to play shows is quite an enterprise, let alone going anywhere outside our shores. I’m not complaining about it. In fact, I love it. But, when you are out on a long stint away from home, you have to clutch at comforts from home to keep spirits high.

My spirit soars into the clouds around bacon. I feel my shoulders relax, and my stomach gently bloom when I know some eggs are on their way. Bacon and eggs are a comforting, ubiquitous combo that is my crutch on the road anywhere in the world. I’m not that fussy about how they come. Crispy, limp, fried, poached, all smashed together in a brutal omelette… just bring them to me.

Now that I have got that off my chest, I want to share one of the most enjoyable ways I like to have the bacon and the egg on the road. Make it yourself if you are lucky enough to stay in a serviced apartment with a kitchen, or make it for your friends who put you up on their floor overnight. It tastes nice.

The following makes 2 sandwiches. One for you, and one for another human of your choice.

1. Make the simple guacamole:
2 avocados
1 big dollop of sour cream
1 finely diced chilli
1 handful of chopped coriander (otherwise known as cilantro here in the States)
the juice of one lime
lots of salt an pepper
Mash them all up in a bowl.
Save some left over coriander leaves to put in the finished sandwich.
2. Toast
Toast up 4 slices of the best sourdough bread you can get your hands on.
3. Bacon and Eggs
While you are toasting the bread, fry up a few strips of bacon for each sandwich. Nice and crispy.
Fry up 2 eggs, sunny side up, until the yolks are just firm, but not as hard and dry as a lame horse’s hoof.
You don’t want the yolk to be a runny mess in a sandwich, but you also don’t want it rubbery and tasteless like a guitarist’s finger callus.
4. Assemble
Place two pieces of toast next to each other.
Spread a generous helping of guacamole on one slice and spread a dollop of ketchup over another.
Then, place the bacon on one slice and the egg on the other, with a few fresh coriander leaves on the egg.
Don’t forget to repeat the same steps for the other human.
Now, have a look at what you are about to eat and soak it all in.
Shove the two halves together, creating your sandwich.
Shove all that in your guts and think of home.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply