With delicious Thanksgiving leftovers still in the fridge and multiple invitations to upcoming decadent holiday dinners, the battle of the bulge is beginning. I am referring to those final five weeks of the year in which The Struggle Is Real. I'm balancing indulging in rich food and drink at holiday festivities with bouts of restraint, exercise, and more austere eats.
You could just alternate between consuming nothing but lettuce and layer cake, but that’s not particularly interesting (not to mention, it leaves no room for cookies!). Instead, I recommend pairing all that punch and panettone with more inspired plates heavy on the plants and healthful proteins.
So, head to The Classic All Day for two of my current favorites: the Israeli Breakfast and Kaya Toast. While the former is a technically matutinal item, as the restaurant’s name suggests, it’s available all hours. Brinner enthusiasts, rejoice!
With all due respect to Skittles, if you really want to taste the rainbow, order the Israeli breakfast platter, a colorful collaboration of emerald-green grilled zucchini slices, garlic-heavy hummus, sunny hard-boiled egg halves, toasted walnuts, feta cheese, rosy-pink pickled onions, and crispy falafel patties, all of which are garnished with errant dollops of smoked yogurt and sliced radishes. Alternating tangy, nutty, and creamy notes keep your palate entertained, and the generous portions of rich hummus and falafel leave you more than satisfied.
When I can’t bare to eschew all carbs, I order the Kaya Toast, a South Asian breakfast staple that The Classic reproduces in fine form. On your left, you’ll find a dish of twin poached eggs adorned with bits of chorizo and dotted with chives; on your right, white toast triangles are filled with coconut jam and “fancy butter.” (I don’t know what makes it “fancy," but I do know it’s delicious.) They key to maximum enjoyment is to blur the geographical boundaries by dunking the sweet toast into the savory eggs, making sure to catch some spicy sausage crumbles on the sticky yolk.
When I’m relishing either of the aforementioned, I not only take pleasure in the fact that I’m doing something to stave off future gluttonous binges, but I also almost forget there’s such a thing as Christmas cookies. Almost.