The Daily Feed: Anticipating an Inaugural Bite

I was having breakfast with my family at Café de la Presse in San Francisco when a 20-something couple sat down at the adjacent table. They studied their menus, then beckoned the waiter.

“I’d like eggs,” the woman said. “But not just scrambled. What does it mean when eggs are poached?”

I smiled at my husband.

Sometimes there’s a dish you’ve enjoyed for years—whether it’s Southern-style grits, or green tea ice cream, or even coffee milk, the official state drink of Rhode Island. It’s amazing to realize there are people who have never, ever experienced the pleasure of that particular food before.

That’s what went through my head as the waiter described the poaching process. “The eggs are cooked gently in acidulated water, so the white firms up and the yolk remains a bit soft, a bit runny.”

“I’ll try them,” she said.

Though we’d finished our meal, I wanted to stay to witness her inaugural bite, and I wished, just for a moment, that I too could taste a perfectly poached egg for the very first time. To mop the runny yolk with toast, and to wonder, wow, what took me so long?


Cheryl Sternman Rule is a widely-published food writer and the voice behind the blog 5 Second Rule.

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