on early summer and sweets at breakfast

well hello
happy summer!


i like sweets for breakfast 
more than at any other meal in fact.
it’s a habit i picked up 
in my apprenticeship days.
an assigned task
that led to a lasting affection. 
back then
when we were finished 
baking the breakfast pastries
and set to start on afternoon tea
we’d stop for morning coffee.

i was the newest on the team then

 and it was my job to sort our break.
it was easy to remember,
it was always the same.

day after day, morning after morning
chocolate and butter sandwiches 
and small cups of coffee.

i’d take warm white buns
straight from the rack,
the kind with little hats on top.

i’d rip them horizontally

and place a thick slice 
of cold unsalted butter inside
atop that, two chocolate batons.

and i’ll tell you what,

it was delicious

we’d stand to eat them

rushed by the clock ticking,
eager to get on with our day.

it’s a memory akin to
the one i talk about here.
it was a little bit of perfection for my then, twenty year old self.

with that though, let’s get back to today.

i like early summer almost as much as i like sweets at breakfast.
i like the start to the season.

i’m particularly taken with 
the colours of roses
and the round heavy of peonies.

i like other people’s gardens
their pretty scents

and their look-at-me beautiful.

i’m fascinated with how
trees turn from willowy silhouettes,
to tall kind of, minarets of green.

i like how grass,
that seemingly days before
wasn’t there
now stands 
near four feet tall.

i like that along the train tracks
beside the place where i sometimes live
there’s a strip of wild like that.
apparently one day bare 
then the next all sorts of green.

 there’s a perfect spot for my table there
alongside a white bush that blooms.

and you know what
there’s a special kind of beauty 
in watching the 
city wake up from that place.

sheltered in that little spot of green

right in the centre and untended of it all,
yet right in the middle of the city.

there’s magic in that

magic in eating sweets for breakfast there. 
magic in the company 
i keep there.

toodles friends.
xo, n 

photos: michael graydon 
props & styling: me

a story about HG in the latest issue 
of anthology magazine
you can purchase a copy here
a new collaboration with my good friend
tara of seven spoons.
find out more here.

birthday wishes to my sweet and super talented friend celine today!

if all goes well, we’ll be updating HG on monday.

this scarf

the colours in this post
this ice cream sandwich
this necklace (via)
these slip ons
this lion 
this green in sorrento
these pots

this place
this project
this swing
this cake stand



curious about the recipe?
i’ll be including more recipes here soon 
but for now, here’s
a quick run down of my process.
the pavlova we ate that morning 
was one made with a recipe really
it had brown sugar plus white 
and was topped with a tart grapefruit moussaline.
(that’s about 50% curd and 50% whipped cream give or take)
we topped that with early summer fruits
macerated in a tiny bit of homemade raspberry jam, 
vanilla bean, water and lemon zest
that we let stand in a covered bottle for just over an hour.


posted on June 23, 2011 by Nikole


  1. Katie says:

    Beautiful post! I wish breakfast could be outside everyday in the summertime.

  2. Jillian Cupcake says:

    What beautiful writing! I love every change of season. Warm mornings are such a treat, like sweets for breakfast.

  3. Maria @ Scandi Foodie says:

    This is beautiful, Nikole. Your photos and thoughts remind me of light summer nights back in Finland. And congratulations on the features! x

  4. Design Elements says:

    beautiful! lovely greetings

  5. nolitawanders says:

    love the photo and the post :)

  6. Linda Susan says:

    So beautiful, the light, the photos…all

  7. nicole says:

    So loverly, all of it. Mmm, summer.

  8. Celine says:

    oh my gosh! was this at 5am in the morning?? haha! Oh Nikole! You're the best. You and M make an amazing team.


    I cannot wait to hang out, the 4 of us.

    And thank you for the birthday shout! Super sweet of you! One day I will come over for some sweets for breakfast.

  9. arounna says:


  10. nadia says:

    just reading this felt like summer, so lovely here.

  11. EMILY says:

    Oof. Nikole. Your writing is as sweet and simple as little drops of dew. Just perfect. x

  12. erica-knits says:

    So yum! Thanks for sharing the recipe. Those raspberries look so delicious on top of the pavlova. Stunning, as usual!

  13. Hannah Mendenhall says:

    Looks fun. Looks cute. Looks yummy. Happy summer!

  14. Viktoria says:

    It looks so delicious!
    The photos are great.

    xx Viktoria


  15. mei says:

    That breakfast looks very alluring in the morning sun and tall grass. Looking forward to trying the recipe – half brown sugar? yum! I've missed your posts! x

  16. ursula says:

    This is,
    my favourite blog to read.

    I thought you
    should know.

  17. kelsey louise says:

    I agree
    with Ursula.

    I appreciate
    your poetic little take
    on the simple things.

    so much.


    haha :/ i was never much of a poet. but really, thanks.

  18. m says:

    An amazing post Nikole. Poppy and Grandma would love to have shared breakfast with you at their old kitchen table. xo Mom

  19. Nicole Franzen {La Buena Vida} says:

    gorgeous as per usual :) I want that in my belly hehe

  20. Shirley says:

    I'm still swooning over the styling of these photos, how lovely!

  21. Kym says:

    oh everything is so perfect here.

    like if summer had a picnic.

  22. Barbara says:

    Adorable post! And I am SO jealous of that beautiful table in the middle of nature! I wouldn't mind to have breakfast there everyday ;)

  23. lucie says:

    Your post is like a christmas gift!

  24. nikole says:

    hi everyone, big thanks!

  25. Claire M. says:

    Looks so delicious ;)

  26. Jaclyn says:

    Looks absolutely delicious

  27. Elizabeth says:

    Hello Nikole. I just discovered your beautiful, inspiring blog. I have similar memories from my early days as a pastry chef–bread, butter, and chocolate (and lots of coffee). And I liked the butter and chocolate cold and firm. Nowadays, I don't eat breakfast, except when I've baked chocolate croissants, or there's cold leftover pie, or we're visiting a city with a good bakery. Those events are known in my household as Breakfast Exception.

  28. Sara says:

    Just discovered this lovely blog. Excited to read more. :)

  29. Y says:

    Chocolate and butter sandwiches! Whoa! :)

  30. isabelle says:

    the cake! the colors! what a beautiful season!

  31. wholelarderlove.com says:

    I'm loving the imagery on this blog!!! You take beautiful well styled images!!

  32. Kylie says:

    yummy yum yum! you make the best foods – makes my tummy growl. love it all.

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