Grandaddy Eggs

One of my fondest memories is of my father, on a day off from the Pennsylvania Railroad, making vegetable soup. I didn’t pay much attention to what he was doing at the time but I loved the aroma in the kitchen. As I came through the back door from school or from delivering newspapers on a cold afternoon, I would be struck by the rich, pungent smell of tomatoes, onions, carrots, beans, slowly cooking in a beef broth. And I remember him standing at the stove, lifting the lid of the pot, allowing more of the delicious, aromatic steam to escape, stirring.

I suppose that is why I have always enjoyed preparing food for my family. Breakfast was always my domain and I loved being in the kitchen early before anyone appeared, starting the coffee, putting on a pot of water for the poached eggs, or merely pouring cereal and buttering toast. The truth is that Sue did almost all the food planning and preparation so skillfully that it would have been a great moral travesty for me to interrupt and insert myself in the process. So, with our children, I sat at the table and eagerly awaited the evening’s creation.

But breakfast, by tacit  agreement, was all mine. Happily I now have grandchildren who seem to appreciate my morning efforts, modest as they are: pancakes, shaped as bunnies, kittens, (pancake kittens are actually bunnies with small ears) and each child’s initials, carefully poured on the griddle, turned and arranged on the plate, always a great hit. I also do eggs: poached, scrambled, fried – pour an ounce or two of water into the skillet near the end, cover with a lid for a minute or so and the sunny-side up beauties have a soft, translucent patina and look like a Monet painting. My specialty, however, is an item two of my grands, the California contingent, have named “Granddaddy Eggs”. They are now a staple when I am with grandchildren. Their parents, my children and spouses, request them on occasion, and my dear spouse who never quite understood the concept of breakfast, asks for them now and then. Recently, our oldest entertained five dear girl friends from College of Wooster days for a weekend reunion here in Chicago. They are in their fifties and we have known them all and loved them since they were students. They visited us Saturday morning for breakfast. I prepared “Granddaddy Eggs” for six, two eggs each, with bacon, fruit and delicious sweet rolls from the farmer’s market on Division Street. They oohed and ahhed and it was one of them who suggested that I write an essay on the topic with detailed instructions. Ergo….

In a pan of boiling water place two eggs, still in the shell, and boil exactly five minutes. While the eggs are cooking cut a piece of buttered toast into 1/4-1/2 inch squares and place in a bowl. Remove the eggs from the boiling water, run through cold water, crack the eggs on the side of the bowl and scoop out the contents into the bowl, over the toast squares. Mix thoroughly. Salt and Pepper.

They are very tasty.


  1. Thank you John for sharing and tweaking my mom memories.. Thinking it might be a generational egg dish as my mom made the same egg dish.
    Be well.. Blessings to you and Sue!

  2. Margaret Laing says:

    Thank you. They sound delicious. Once again I’m struck by the feeling that you were telling me this, not that I was “only” reading it. What a wonderful way to write!

  3. Barbara Harris says:

    I am just having a chance to catch up on your writings, and WOW, “Grandaddy eggs as requested! They were delicious, and I thoroughly enjoyed getting to visit with you & Sue in your new home. Thanks for it all.

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