When some people find out they’re having a baby, they think about their baby’s first smile, first laugh, and first steps. My first thought was NOW I GET TO EAT ALL THE FOODS. I typically eat healthy. In fact, I’ve spent most of my life on one diet or another. But since getting knocked up, I wake up every morning with a fierce hunger for the wildest, beefiest, and cheesiest of meals. It's taken a real effort to not drink nacho cheese sauce. My prego cravings never seem to go away. Fact is, this pregnancy might be my only shot to say screw it and literally eat until I puke (and blame morning sickness).
My favorite meal of the day has always been breakfast. So I decided to let my cravings dictate my dining for a week, and to document my breakfasts for posterity. As it turns out, my cravings don’t subside until I eat myself into a food coma. So I figured I’d rank the meals by the length of my post-gorge nap.
Where do you go when you want a lot of food thrown on your table as fast as possible? Dim sum. Dim sum is the best kind of meal if you love eating but hate dining. You eat as soon as you walk in the door. You ask for the check as soon as the last plate hits the table. What’s the point of lingering around when I could be back at home in my PJs watching Netflix murder docs?
I judge a dim sum spot by the quality of its cha siu bao (that’s roasted BBQ pork bun for any dim sum noobs). Is the dough chewy but not too tough? Is there a perfect ratio of unctuous fat to sticky meat? If so, you can bet the rest of the dumplings will be just as satisfying.
And satisfying they were, as is always the case at Miami's Tropical Chinese.
Grade: three-hour nap.
Eggs Benedict and Corned Beef on a Bagel
When you’re pregnant you combine weird foods. I enjoy dipping mandarin orange slices into apple cider vinegar. This is why my next craving took me to Josh’s Deli. Chef Josh Marcus makes food for two kinds of people: high people and pregnant people. He knows how to combine food in wonderfully delicious ways. His dishes are a blend of Jewish deli classics mixed with insane twists (the man tops his latkes with spicy tuna!).
I went with his take on eggs Benedict, the Corned Beef Benediction. It’s a toasted and buttered bagel topped with house-made corned beef, onions, potatoes, peppers, poached eggs, and Hollandaise sauce. If I was drunk, it would have sobered me up.
Grade: two-hour nap and one Tums.
Giant Lamb Burrito
My baby daddy (who is not pregnant and therefore has no excuse) went with Josh's smoked BBQ Lamb Croque Senora Loca. It's essentially a three-pound breakfast burrito filled with lamb, cheese curd, and fries, and it tastes even better than it sounds. I don’t even like lamb but even I went in for multiple bites.
Grade: two-hour nap and one Tums.
I usually don’t like sweet things for breakfast, so my next craving was surprising. But something inside me told me that I needed doughnuts. Lots of doughnuts. The Salty Donut is one of those places that charges $4 per doughnut but gets away with it because they’re so over-the-top.
Pictured clockwise starting at top left: Holiday Funfetti; the Guava + Cheese (quintessential Miami); Apple + Dulce de Leche; Baked Cookies and Cream; Maple + Bacon; Eggnog Creme Brulee; and, last but not least, a cinnamon sugar doughnut hole with a spiked shot of something vanilla-y that you inject into the doughnut hole with a squeeze bulb syringe.
The doughnuts gave my fetus a sugar high that had him doing somersaults for an hour. The crash that followed made me understand what a junkie must feel like during detox. I would not eat this many doughnuts in one sitting again. OK, I probably will, but I would regret it… again.
Grade: one-hour nap. I couldn’t rest because my baby was auditioning for Cirque du Soleil in my uterus.
Maybe it’s a testament to the cooks at Coral Bagels, or maybe it's the simplest things that are the best, but this was the best meal of the week.
Grade: four-hour nap and 1 Tums. Great success!
Frito Pie Melt
Remember how I said my body craves cheesy, beefy goodness? My final craving took me to Ms. Cheezious. This food truck-turned-restaurant specializes in grilled chilled sandwiches with ingredients so crazy, reading the menu can clog your arteries. I know, I know, this isn’t exactly breakfast food, but LAY OFF ME I’M PREGNANT.
I ordered my favorite: the Frito Pie Melt with a side of cheese fries and root beer. The melt is made with homemade chili, American cheese, onions, jalapeños, and Fritos on sourdough bread. It is RICH. It is FILLING. It will cause heartburn in the heartiest of eaters.
Like I did after all my meals, I came home, chugged some milk, popped a Tums, and got in bed. This was my shortest nap of any meal, because, to be honest, I woke up and needed something sweet.
I wonder if I have any of those doughnuts left...
Grade: half-hour nap. 1 Tums.