Monday, September 30

pancakes on Sunday (with a recipe)

I cherish our weekends as a family. Not just because, by Friday, I am wore right out. I see our weekends as an ideal time to create a family culture: to develop routines, rituals. To cultivate a rhythm of "things we do" that we can all rely on, look forward to, create memories through. So far, what we've come up with: Saturday morning tacos, and Sunday morning pancakes.

On Saturday morning we headed out to our favorite little taqueria. Silas pestered the waitress as soon as we walked in: "Tacos! Tacos!" He proceeded to eat his egg taco like a little piggy, face-first. Then my husband took the kiddos to the playground while I went grocery shopping. Perfect Saturday morning outing.

Sunday dawned dark and stormy. I declared it a two-coffee-pot morning. I escaped to the bedroom for a little bit of writing. I like to gather myself to the page early in the day, weave together thoughts and feelings and intentions into something usable, into something that can shape my day. It's the place where I start--figuratively and literally. My days flow so much more smoothly when I've taken the time to consider how I want to feel, what I want to so, what's truly important to me. Our weekends are so much more rewarding when my husband and I take the time to talk through our wants and needs. On Sunday morning, that's easy. Our wants and needs merge into one demand: pancakes.

I've been at it for several weeks, birthing this Sunday morning pancake tradition. The very first week, taking pity on a battered and blackened banana, I scrolled through Pinterest in search of a recipe for banana pancakes. They were beautiful and yummy. Silas helped me make "poo-cakes" by standing on the kitchen stool next to me, and scooping and dumping flour in and out of two little bowls. This, I said, is how we'll do Sunday mornings.

The next week, I doubled the recipe, to disappointing results. I'd had too much coffee, not enough protein, and the pancakes remained stubbornly undercooked in the center. Too much banana, I guessed. The next week, same thing. This time I cursed the recipe and vowed not to use it again. My husband said he didn't care for the banana anyway, and reminded me of a great cornmeal pancake recipe from our favorite cookbook, one we used to make back in the day but hadn't had in ages.

This week, we were going to get it right. I was determined to make pancake-making easy like Sunday morning. I took my cues from earlier weeks: I ate something prior to pancake making (an over-caffeinated, hangry cook doesn't make for fun flipping at the stove), I used a trusted and true recipe. I had already done my scribbling and wool-gathering earlier because I knew that after breakfast, the energy of the day would have shifted and the window for desk-time would have closed. I was rested and ready. I mixed the ingredients, stirred the batter, let it sit. I put on a Ray Lamontagne/Josh Ritter station on Pandora. This would be our week.

It was. The pancakes were delicious: corny in the best way, a fantastic vehicle for butter and maple syrup. The flipping was swear-free. We eased from table into the day pleasantly full: of pancake, of each other's company, of the loveliness and grounding of making traditions together, of hand crafting what it means to be a family, our family.

I love the weekends. I already cannot wait for the next.

Cornmeal pancakes (adapted from ReBar Cookbook)

2/3 cup + 2 tbsp fine cornmeal
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 egg, room temperature
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 tbsp melted butter or oil

extra butter or oil, for cooking

Stir together the dry ingredients in one bowl. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the egg, then add the rest of the ingredients. Combine the wet and dry ingredients, gently stir together, and let sit for 5 minutes.

 Heat a pan or griddle to medium-high heat. Add just enough butter or oil to cover the surface. Drop the batter 1/3 cup at a time on the hot surface, flipping once bubbles appear on the surface and the edges start to dry. Continue to cook for a few minutes on the other side. Serve immediately.

Serves two adults and a toddler.

1 comment:

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