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I gave up a few hours of sleep this morning to hustle out to Rockville for a Hong Kong style breakfast with our food writer Tim Carman. I thought a bowl of steaming congee (rice gruel, basically, with meat and sometimes preserved eggs) would fit well with Carman’s recent explorations into exotic morning eats. He picked the place: Maria’s Bakery & Cafe. I’ll leave the critique to him, but overall I think it was worth the trip for the congee and the pillowy Chinese pastries. A few items were a bit disappointing. Particularly, the “fried egg with bacon” which came out as f”ried egg with hot dog.” The hot dog was not very hot and had been decorated with hash marks, like a radish. Having already outed ourselves as culinary tourists, we asked why the hot dog had replaced the bacon.

Our waitress was ready with the answer: People don’t like bacon. They don’t think it’s very healthy. You can see the fat.

She didn’t seem convinced by my argument that hot dogs were probably just as bad. I think she actually scoffed when I said you couldn’t see the fat because it was hiding. Anyway. Now I can eat as many hot dogs as I want, knowing they are healthy and fat-free.