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The Emergency McMuffin

October 1, 2018

Things have been intense lately. All around.

Thankfully, at least on the home front, things will be returning to normal. Mrs. Fussy is back from her quick trip to Copenhagen and Lund, and she brought me some caviar paste in a tube. I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to do with it, but I’ll let you know.

For the past few days, I was working hard to prepare for last Sunday’s Official Yelp Event with the New York Beef Council at Trowbridge Farms.

Now that the OYE is over I am on to the next big thing. I think I might be guest lecturing at SCCC on Tuesday. Or at least, that’s the rumor. Later this week I also have three different food events to judge. That is not a complaint. Food judging is an honor and a great responsibility, and I love to do it as much as I can. However, I’m finding it does take a physical toll.

The other thing that takes a physical toll is not eating. We’ve talked about this before, and maybe it makes sense to bring it up again in the context of the benefit for The Food Pantries for the Capital District coming up on Thursday.

But mostly I felt the need to talk about my not-so-secret shame.

Human mouths aren’t just pie holes to be filled. They are also pleasure centers. So, eating has the potential to bring us joy. And that’s kind of amazing. If we’re lucky, we can have three opportunities every day for brief moments of happiness. Still, every day I drive by fast food establishments and I see people trudging in without even a little spring in their step.

It always feels like a tragedy. If you are going to eat something you know isn’t great for your waistline, arteries, or blood pressure, dammit, you should enjoy the heck out of it.

Other times food is simply fuel. And I think that for the most part, these pleasure palaces of fast food restaurants, have simply turned into gas stations for human bodies.

This is where the shame comes into play.

Because somewhere in between my pre-event errands yesterday, I noticed I was feeling a bit shaky. Quite literally. I only had a few bites of yogurt and granola for breakfast, and I needed some food right away.

Usually, this is where slices of New York Style pizza come into play. A slice is one of those treats that I love. Because when you don’t have much time, and you want something hot, delicious, and satisfying, it’s hard to do better than crust, cheese, and sauce.

Tragically, the pizza place was closed. And I was left with a difficult decision: Stewart’s or McDonald’s. I suppose there was a Dunkin’ Donuts on the block too, but that is truly the food of last resort. Actually, I may rather go hungry than eat Dunkin’.

McDonald’s has the benefit of making it’s Egg McMuffin from a whole cracked egg. The egg pucks at Stewart’s still give me the shivers.

One of the things I’ve learned lately is the one Egg McMuffin is all I need. It weighs in at 300 calories, with 18g of satisfying protein. The sandwich as 12g of fat with six of those grams being saturated. There are even 2g of dietary fiber, and a paltry 3g of sugar.

At a bit over three bucks, it’s more expensive than it should be. I’d much rather get a better egg and cheese sandwich from a local diner. However, hungry is hungry. And the time crunch can sometimes get the better of you.

This was food as fuel.

I tried to enjoy it as much as I could. But there’s something about the squishiness of the canadian bacon, the rubbery egg, and the blandness of the muffin. It’s a form that has so much promise, but the fast food version just doesn’t quite deliver.

Maybe that’s not fair. Because with a little more love, this sandwich could be great. More toast on the muffin, a little caramelization on the canadian bacon, and some cultured butter would go a long way. The fact that diners can deliver on this promise for less money than the fast food giant, would lead me to believe with their efficiency, McDonald’s could indeed do better.

Still, it so much better than the egg sandwich at Stewart’s, it’s not even funny. It got me through to the afternoon, and I’m glad to have the Egg McMuffin around for emergencies.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. -R. permalink
    October 1, 2018 10:41 am

    I personally much prefer the Sausage McMuffin with Egg – a lot less rubbery, and quite a bit more savory. Just my 2¢.

    • albanylandlord permalink
      October 1, 2018 2:25 pm

      Yes – As a frequent McMuffin eater – the sausage is the tastiest. But there is a pretty high price to be paid in saturated fat calories. And while I am a huge fan of meat fat, the egg mcmuffin isn’t where I want to use my splurge.
      My solution is the unadvertised Egg McMuffin with bacon. Salty savory and less of a splurge than the sausage. Order “Egg McMuffin – sub bacon” so they will understand what you want . I think the upcharge is $0.10.
      I get the ham, sausage, and bacon version to change it up but the bacon is the best.

      And yes Daniel, the bread should be toasted more. But at least they don’t use bread-wetting margarine anymore.

  2. Dave permalink
    October 1, 2018 11:23 am

    You are comparing apples to oranges I think. Stewart’s isn’t “fast food” exactly. It is convenience food, “gas station cuisine” if you will. Different categories. Judged alongside other stuff that I have pulled out of gas station hot cases in my travels, the Stewart’s sandwiches are not half bad.

  3. Paul G permalink
    October 1, 2018 11:56 am

    I feel breakfast sandwiches are still a place where Albany is lacking- and so, the Egg McMuffin is still sometimes the best option. For there to be another contender, the restaurant must a) open early b) serve breakfast to a reasonable hour, c) be open every day of the week d) not be a seasonal establishment and e) be relatively quick for a to-go order.

    There are no places that fit the bill that have a better breakfast sandwich than the lame Egg McMuffin. Our best options by far – H&L’s and Eggys – are both seasonal and not always open on weekends. The restaurants we have with great breakfast options are sit-down only. I know we have a few restaurants/diners where you may be able to pop in and awkwardly stand around by the register while your order is cooked up… but I don’t consider these to be real to-go places.

    • October 2, 2018 10:14 am

      Illusive in Renssealaer is trying to fill that niche. They open at 6am and have a take-out counter/area attached to the restaurant. I haven’t had their breakfast sandwiches but all the lunch sandwiches I’ve tried have been great.

  4. October 1, 2018 7:32 pm

    This is why God gave us ketchup.

    Speaking of Stewart’s, if you spot the elusive egg white and turkey sausage on an English muffin, it’s definitely worth the $3.50.

  5. Marco permalink
    October 4, 2018 1:22 pm

    Just returned from Illusive in Rensselaer. I had the generous bacon, egg and cheese sandwich. The roll was exceptional, as was the rest of the sandwich. Fresh eggs and first rate bacon from Idaho. I have to go back for lunch, soon. This place should be on your next tour de breakfast sandwich. Plus a large good coffee from Capital City Roasters included, all for $6!

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