Food and the World – Invention of Breakfast as Ritual, Global, Historical, Personal – by Katrina Lund. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at and

Food and the World – Invention of Breakfast as Ritual, Global, Historical, Personal – by Katrina Lund. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at and


Given what it has added to my life and the universality of it, I would like to tackle the most important meal of the day. Breakfast is eaten around the world today, but has not always been a human tradition. Romans believed in only eating once a day, viewing breakfast as a greedy indulgence. You would mostly only eat in the morning if you were sick or an elder during this period. In Europe during the middle ages monarchs would occasionally eat in the morning, but not often, and not anything that resembles modern day breakfast cuisine.

The shift towards morning meal time emerged with the shift towards longer and earlier work days. Those rising early to collect harvest would be afforded breakfast by their employer before setting out to the field. Around the 16th century nobles who had the luxury of sleeping in finally started adopting the AM practice with more regularity. The globe’s continual creeping towards routine and long work days for the emerging global economy set the practice in place as what we know it to be today.

Breakfast is often the most vivid meal of my entire childhood. I remember my elementary school ritual of getting dressed with the uninhibited expectations of walking down the stairs to either a bowl of cereal or oatmeal (both dishes reflections of my beautiful mother’s culinary prowess). Weekends meant my father was off work and could cook breakfast for us too, rather than just dinner. Sunday morning was a Lund family tradition. Often some savory concoction revolving around eggs, potatoes and some form of pork. These were some of my favorite moments as a child, and I can still feel how bright those mornings were for us. My mother would say his eggs Benedict was “the reason she married my father.”

This tradition carried on till my Father passed away unexpectedly while I was in high school, around the same time I began to develop separate associations with the morning ritual. My sophomore year at Brainerd Senior high school I met my very dearest friends. The most beloved memories after the death of my father were made with them and we are still incredibly close, if not closer. All four of them are some distance from me now, one in California, one partially in New York/Minneapolis and the other two residing full time in Minneapolis. A fact that is made easier by our constant connectedness via our cell phones of course. Breakfast is something we make sure to share whenever we see each other. Our ideal breakfast takes place at some classic American diner with a classic American plate; two eggs, over easy (“dippy” according to my friend Hana) crispy hash-browns, extra crispy bacon, toast, and never ending coffee. We have all shared this meal countless times, but we will still reminisce about that one time in that one diner. Maybe it was the one with the cinnamon rolls we always share, or the one that infuses bacon with the maple syrup. If we’re at our favorite diner in Brainerd, The Barn, and our favorite waitress Loretta tells Lydia they have pea soup, odds are high we will each have a few slurps of pea soup that morning. Where or what we eat isn’t usually the point, we just love to spend our mornings full and in each other’s company. When they all come to visit me in October, I’m taking them to the spot where my mother and I found our favorite egg’s Benedict in Duluth.

From Professor Liang’s Fall 2019 Politics of Globalization class. Katrina is a student of English and Political Science.

Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports

See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at

The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy ( is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our guiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five years we have published over 300 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our volunteer student editors and writers come from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors ( We have an all volunteer staff. The North Star Reports is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang and NSR Student Editors and Writers. For a brief summary of our history, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at:

Professor Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports. Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports. Ellie Swanson and Marin Ekstrom, Assistant Managing Editors, The North Star Reports.

(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is fully funded by an annual donation from Professor Liang. The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy.

Leave a comment

Filed under Global Studies, Professor Hong-Ming Liang, Professor Liang's Classes

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.