This section of the book is from the "Household Companion: The Home Book Of Etiquette" book.
The hour at which breakfast shall be served is governed entirely by the habits and tastes of the family. Where it is very late, it is often preceded by the sending of coffee or tea, rolls and eggs in some form, to the bed rooms, the family, in such a case, not coming down to a general meal till about noon. Breakfast, however, is served in the same manner whether the hour be early or late, and this meal should always be quite free from formality.
A tea and coffee tray should be placed in front of the mistress of the house. It is quite within the rules of breakfast etiquette for people to wait on themselves and to help each other, and as the bread, small dishes. etc., are frequently on the side table, this is a very convenient fashion. One servant is enough in the dining-room in the morning, even though a larger number may be retained. Ordinary courses for breakfast consist of three or four, such as hominy or oatmeal--first, then eggs, meat, or ham, and the chief portion of the food, followed by griddle-cakes and finally fruit. Toast should be freshly made, and sent up from time to time while the breakfast goes on. It should be always hot, as cold toast is never palatable.