Breakfast at Bakn

The Pittsburgh neighborhood of Carnegie boasts the cutest local restaurant called Bakn.

Their logo is a little carton pig. It’s used in the wall art, menu and all through the restaurant. Nichola laughed as we discussed what an unorthodox choice this place was for a plant based eater. While they don’t have much on the menu for a vegan eater, there were a few vegetarian choices. This worked great because I’m not super strict, especially when I travel.

I was perfectly happy with my hot cakes, a real treat that I like to indulge in while traveling.

They are Food Network endorsed with good reason. My breakfast was tasty and there was plenty of it. even the menu is fun to read here.

In the neighborhood? Hungry? Just enjoy dreaming over a good restaurant menu? Here you go!

Tomorrow we leave Pittsburgh and move on to other topics. Hope to see you back then!

Somewhere I’ve Never Been

Maybe it’s the Whole 30 talking but I’m dying to have breakfast in a quiet diner I’ve never been to. I want to linger over my meal and plan the day ahead while eavesdropping on the early bird regulars. They’ll order their usual and chat with the waitress about their grandkids while I study a brochure over my veggie omelette or pancakes.

It’s Day 26 and, while I’m fine with most of my food, I’m sick of the limited protein choices. Being pescatarian, my proteins are seafood and eggs. No veggie burgers, no soy of any kind, no faux meats which literally are the only processed foods that make their way into my plate most days.

You can only fix fish so many ways before it starts to lose its luster.

But it’s Day 26 and I feel pretty good. I’m planning to keep going about another week or ten days before abandoning the strict rules and attempting to just focus on eating clean again.

Meanwhile, I badly want to find an old diner in a town I’ve never been and wait for the regulars to filter in. I’m thinking an omelette packed with mushrooms, onions, peppers, broccoli and goat cheese would be good. Add some hash browns and some toast – maybe a little fruit. That’s all. Nothing fancy.

Soon. Someday soon I’ll take off and find my way to a fabulous diner and come back with pictures to share. Meanwhile, my memories of pancakes and a delicious garden burger at the Oasis Diner will have to suffice.

Do Me A Favor

Do me a favor. If you are near a Tudor’s Biscuit World, go there now and order an egg on a biscuit with sliced cheese (none of that nasty melted stuff). Then sit and savor the darn thing while you think of me.

I’m more than halfway through the Whole 30 and don’t really care about most food right now but am dying for this stupid sandwich. The closest Tudor’s is about 45 minutes away and I would not want to start over my thirty days just for egg and sliced cheese on a biscuit but it would be tempting.

Yes, friends. It is that good.

If you’re not familiar, Tudor’s is a regional chain that serves breakfast and lunch. I’ve never had lunch food but their breakfast is pretty tasty. So if you ever have a chance to grab breakfast I would recommend it!

Go. Go forth and enjoy.

Pamela’s Diner

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you are aware that I appreciate a good diner. And when I say a good diner, I don’t mean a place that’s shiny and pretty with a menu of locally sourced organic vegetables.

When I say good diner, I’m talking about the kind of place with a counter, a lunch special and waitresses who know how their regulars like their burgers. I’m talking about the kind of place where retirees gather to swap stories over pancakes and where teenagers can grab a quick bite on their way home from school.

With that said, you’re sometimes able to find that magical intersection of polished atmosphere and local hangout with great food. The folks in Pittsburgh are fortunate to have six diners that fit this description. They’re part of a chain called Pamela’s that’s been serving up breakfast since 1980. Each location has it’s own theme and menu so it doesn’t feel at all like a chain and, as I’m typing this, I’m dying to go try another location. But I digress.

My friend Nichola took me to the Mt. Lebanon location during our marathon weekend last fall.

We tried the Hotcakes, Lyonnaise Potatoes and Gail’s Favorite Eggs which are lightly scrambled with cream cheese and scallions. Holy cow – it was good. Yeah – I’ll never make it as a food critic. “Holy cow, it was good” is probably the best I can do. It all was simply delicious and there was a lot of it.

But just as important as the fabulous food is the fabulous atmosphere. I’m not even going to try to describe it. Just have a look here.

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Like I said, each location has a different theme. There’s one near the Strip I’d like to visit for its fifties diner motif.

Want to drool over the menus or maybe plan a visit your next time in Pittsburgh? Check out their website! A couple of things to remember though – they only do breakfast and lunch AND they are a cash only operation. Hit the ATM before you go!

Kick start your morning with a good breakfast

We’ve all heard the saying that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I have learned that days I eat a good breakfast I stay full longer, maintain my energy and just feel better. Eating a sugary pastry or skipping the meal altogether makes me feel terrible. So I’m constantly on the lookout for nutritious meals that can be prepared and eaten quickly.

I grew up in a household where oatmeal came from a little packet and tasted like a soupy, sugary, blended up mess. So the thought of eating oatmeal on purpose never sounded appealing until I figured out that oats can taste good when prepared quickly.

Here’s a recipe I follow:

Peachy Keen Oatmeal

1 Cup Oats

1/4 cup sliced frozen peaches, thawed

1 Tbsp. slivered almonds

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 cup skim milk

1 packet Truvia or other natural sweetener.

Combine all ingredients and microwave on high for one to two minutes to achieve desired consistency.

This is a very basic recipe for one that can be multiplied for a family or changed in anyway you like. Instead of peaches and almonds use berries and walnuts or try apples, almonds and cinnamon for something that packs a flavorful punch! Frozen fruits are convenient but fresh works oh so well too!

It can be prepared quickly in the morning or the night before so there’s no excuse for missing breakfast anymore!