For example, I rarely eat a grilled cheese sandwich without thinking of my mother (who made them for me on rainy days) or my first serious boyfriend, Mark, who was a master and taught me the tricks of the trade (good thing too, since we subsisted largely on cheese and starch in those days): butter the bread before you throw it in the pan, cook at medium heat, use plenty of cheese, turn down to low, and cover until the cheese melts. Home baked bread is Julie Daniel (who set a standard I have still not reached) and Mary Lou Goertzen (who took me under her wing and taught me how to bake bread when I was eight or nine). Eggs Benedict is my friend "princess" Abigail and my husband, to whom she passed her secrets. Stuffed jalapeños are Greta Dahling. And so on...
Food connects us to our past, to our heritage, to the people we love. And so, without further ado, a vital yet unsung culinary strategy from my friend Samuel Ferris Harmon, master of breakfast. I certainly never eat scrambled eggs without thinking of Sam, and here's why: he makes the brightest, fluffiest scrambled eggs you've ever seen. Sam taught me two key tricks years ago (make sure you whip the eggs thoroughly before throwing them in the pan and don't add anything because it tends to mess with the texture and color), but I asked him for additional details for this post.
Sam's Perfect Scrambled Eggs
(in Sam's words)
Heat a non-stick pan to medium high heat (6 or 7).
Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat them with a fork or whisk briskly until they start bubbling.
Make sure that the pan is hot and put a generous amount of butter in the pan. Make sure to keep it moving and that the pan isn't so hot that the butter burns. Next, pour the eggs over the butter.
Gently fold the eggs with a spatula into the center of the pan until done.
When they are done is personal preference. I like them cooked all the way through, but some people like them a little bit runny. Don't use any salt until the eggs are served--I've found that putting salt in before you cook them tends to make them dry out.