My boyfriend’s dad is an attorney, and do you know what that means? Harry & David gift baskets at Christmas! During the Years of Temping I spent some time as an executive assistant to lawyers, advertising guys, and other hommes d’affaires and often part of my job would be overseeing the ordering of holiday gifts from the Harry & David or Tiffany Business Catalog. One advertising agency head I worked for kept a database of clients and vendors that kept track of what gift he’d got them last year so he would accidentally repeat something or get a smaller gift and give inadvertent offense. Like you can’t follow up a $125 paneled bowl with the $39.95 All’s Well Banquet. This list went back decades, and for me it turned into this neat anthropology project thinking about how gifts work in human cultures – when are they obligations, when are they displays of status, when are they gestures of heartfelt kindness and generosity, and also what happens to all the cut glass crystal that some of these people had accumulated over 30 years of working with this guy.
The other upside is that when you work for one of these dudes they GET gift baskets and then your office is full of beautiful pears and gourmet popcorn for the entire month of December. Adjunct faculty at an art school don’t get Harry & David gift baskets.
So I was lucky enough to inherit some beautiful pears (all eaten), some fancy jams (Some will be eaten, some will be recycled as hostess gifts. Maybe at your house.), and smoked salmon. Really good smoked salmon. And it prompted me to make a brilliant breakfast sandwich. What you’ll need:
- 1 bagel, toasted
- 1/2 avocado
- A bit of smoked salmon
- Whatever else you’d eat with that – I like thin-sliced red onion, tomato, and lots of freshly ground black pepper. If you have capers, fresh dill, etc. go ahead and throw it on.
Mash the avocado on half the bagel. Build the sandwich. Eat it. No cream cheese required.
Long live the Harry & David gift basket! Long live the breakfast sandwich!
Not photogenic, but tasty.