I can safely say that it’s a city crazy about brunch. On weekend days, especially Sundays, people all over town go out for eggs, pancakes, and sandwiches. People who normally would never wait for a table at a restaurant shiver in the cold for an hour at the most happening spots. Even the most dingy, unspectacular pubs open up on Sunday mornings to serve scrambled eggs to bleary-eyed hipsters. Brunch can be a group affair with parents and friends, or even just a quiet breakfast between roommates where you re-hash the events of Saturday night.
The word “brunch” is obviously made from the words “breakfast” and “lunch.” It’s served midday and combines the best sweet and savory elements of both of these meals. It’s the most common way to celebrate Easter and Mother’s Day, and has even become an important element of wedding and family celebrations. As popular as it is, it’s easy to wonder how this mish-mash middle meal ever came to be.
The origins of brunch aren’t exactly clear. We do know, however, that on Sundays, it was common among Christians to have a large post-church meal. Catholics require fasting before mass, so after leaving their place of worship, many people ate a large celebratory meal combining breakfast and lunch. Some churches even hosted the meals right on the premises. We also know that during much of Western history, the Sunday midday meal was the largest meal of the day, followed in the early evening by a smaller supper.