Wednesday, February 14, 2007

"The Ross"

I have this particular breakfast that I greatly enjoy. My kids and friends call it "The Ross". In its basic form it requires potatoes, ketchup, meat and a runny egg (sunny-side up or over-easy). The potatoes should be easily cut into small pieces, but not too small (so no mashed or baked potatoes.) Scalloped potatoes or some kind of hash browns work best. The meat can be anything from steak to sausage, though I prefer pork chops. The key thing is to dice everything up, put on just the right amount of ketchup and mix everything together, that's "The Ross".

I introduced a couple of co-workers to it yesterday and they quite enjoyed it, now they're bugging me about the history. I know it started in college, before then I just didn't go out for breakfast often enough. It started with steak, just because I have a habit of beginning with the most expensive item on the menu and then working down. Also that's about the time I got in the habit of mixing things together. It's amazing how far you can stretch some rice as long as it has something mixed in it... Of course I was still poor so it wasn't long before I was trying other meats than steak and it's at this point that I discovered you have to find each restaurants inner "Ross". At some the ratio of meat to potatoes is off and you have to order another side of hash browns. At some you order the sausage patty, at some you order the steak, and at one you actually have to get the crab cakes.

This means that each example of "The Ross" is going to be a little bit different, some better, some worse. The best I ever found, and a staple for many years was at a little greasy spoon right across the street from the mall that's being featured so prominently in all the news stories the last few days. It was called "Bill and Nada's" and it was home. They had little jukeboxes on every table, and every visit someone would play Cash's "Ring of Fire". It was in this little cafe that people first started calling it "The Ross". Unfortunately eventually Bill and Nada died (I forget who died first) and it was their explicit wish that the cafe not continue on without them, so eventually it was razed. Here's a picture of the cafe in it's prime, and if you're more ambitious Here's a whole page of pictures of Bill and Nada regulars no my picture isn't there, I was a lightweight, there were people who ate three meals a day there.

In any case I'm lucky, the cafe here at work, though horrible at making lunches, has the ingrediants for a pretty decent "Ross", but it will never be the same as it was at that little greasy spoon.

Every restaurant I've ever loved has broken my heart


Anonymous ed said...

You know, I think "Big Ed's" by the U ought to be able to make you a _really_ good "Ross." Try one of their "God-Awfuls" and you'll see.

1:48 PM  
Blogger Ross said...

I can and have put together a pretty decent "Ross" at Big Ed's, but it's not the same... I think that Bill and Nada had some kind of secret ingredient in their hash browns. My theory is that it was love...

2:06 PM  
Blogger aozora said...

Sounds awesome. I have a new culinary goal, thanks!

I try to pack a lunch everyday and it is at least a cousin to The Ross. Mostly stretching rice for long term financial goals.

I knew I was in the right place!

4:50 AM  
Blogger aozora said...

P.S. Great pictures. Thanks.

4:50 AM  

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