Enjoying the sweet last few minutes before dashing off to my second job in the morning – brunch service at an area restaurant, I was sipping the last of coffee and my cigarette, listening to the rain. It was unseasonably cool, and for that I was thankful. The last few days had been beastly, even for my cold-natured disposition. My phone rang, it was my boss. “Do you want to take the day off?” I hesitated for a moment. But just for a moment. I thought about my sweet husband still curled up in bed. I thought about my overtime check due to post tomorrow. “Yeah, I think I would.”
Sweet! Unexpected day off – I’m making pancakes!
You see: about six months ago, my now-husband and I moved out on our own. I know. We’re grown-ups. We should have done this ages ago. But, life had thrown us various twists and turns, and delayed the process for a while. We both work in food and food service. Our schedules became more erratic, and our time together became even more dear. So, in an effort to spend at least part of one day a week having quality time together – Pancake Day was born. It’s a chance to cook for my husband – who spends all this time cooking for other people. It’s a chance to show off on instagram and Facebook my breakfast skills. It’s a chance to honor the culinary geniuses that I have the pleasure of knowing and learning from. It’s a chance to show my partner how much I love him. That’s really what it’s all about. Food is the most tangible form of love. I can show with my hands what my clumsy words sometimes cannot express. Food can always nourish the belly, but done right, it can nourish the heart and soul. In cooking for my husband, I am channeling three generations of men and women who always gathered in the kitchen. Where, “Have you eaten?” was more common than, “I love you”, because they mean the same damn thing. Where, “You’re so skinny!” was a critique of how you must be living, not a compliment. In the complicated, sometimes maddening, sometimes suffocating, always messy web of this thing we call “family”, food is what keeps it all together. The kitchen is the heart of the home, with good reason. No wonder a chef stole my heart. And no wonder I charmed him with my cooking. I have only my family to blame.
So you want to make perfect pancakes? Here’s the trick. Pour your love into them. Make them with the intention of not only feeding those you love’s bellies, but their hearts. With every bite, let them know that they are loved. That’s it. But a great recipe doesn’t hurt.
- 1 ¼ C AP Flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp. butter, melted
- 1 egg, beaten
- ¼ c sour cream
- 1 to 1 ¼ C milk
- 3-4 handfuls of blueberries
- Combine all dry ingredients, mix thoroughly, whisk in all wet ingredients except berries until smooth. (Note: I usually have to add a little milk or flour to get desired consistency – you want it to pour well, but not be too watery or too thick.)
- Gently (!) fold in handfuls of blueberries – 3 or 4 should do it.
- Pour on a medium-hot, bacon-greased or buttered griddle. (You can test it by flinging a few drops of water on it – if they hiss and sizzle and generally dance about – it’s ready.)
- Turn when they reach that point where the surface has bubbled and they have popped.
- Cook until golden-brown on both sides, butter, syrup, and if you are us, bacon and eggs in front of the t.v. in your jammies.