How a Parallel World Opened Up in the Kitchen

I am a pancake-o-philiac. That’s a made-up term meaning “pancake lover.”

Well, it got a little out of hand at one point. I used to order a pancake with every meal and when you’re approaching 40 the waistline…complains.

A while ago I swore off wheat and sugar and dropped the pant sizes, but put the kabash on the pancake loving. It means I am ever on the lookout for pancakes that don’t contain wheat flour.

The other morning I woke up with a craving, but had run out of buckwheat (not wheat by the way!) and I found myself rummaging through the pantry. I located an old gluten-free mix, but didn’t want to use it straight out because of all the other starches in there, so I looked for something to cut it with. Lo and behold, I found coconut flour. Low-glycemic coconut flour. I started to experiment, combining flours and mixes ad hoc, adding a dash of almond meal and viola: a batter of questionable value. I thought, What the hell, let’s see how this pancake flies!

I set up the hotplate thing and made me an experimental pancake and I’ll be damned if it wasn’t the best pancake I’ve ever made. It even looked like a real pancake from my youth and the taste, ah, I was delighted.

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Now up till this time, I had been innocently on my own in the kitchen just making myself breakfast. Well, word gets out because I can’t keep the good news to myself about this new pancake discovery. And my Mother-in-Law asks for one.

This is no slight on her, it’s just how things went down. I am relating factual events here. No embellishments.

I, of course, oblige and make her one. She takes two bites and says, “kind of soft in the middle, huh?”

“Okaaaay.”

Meanwhile I scarf down two more and make one for my wife who also exclaims their virtues. I shrug off the comment by my Mother-in-Law mumbling something about the almond flour making them mushy. I noticed they were a bit mushy in the middle too, and you know, I didn’t care.

Then she says, “Nope. Not one of your best. Take these off the menu!”

“Uh, actually, I love them,” I say.

“Oh really?”

Now, here’s the thing. My mouth is not subjective. You can’t tell me I like something if I don’t. I mean, you can condition a pallet for an acquired taste, but you still have to like to like it, if that makes sense.

I stood there, spatula in hand thinking about this. What did I care about someone else liking my experimental pancakes that I had made for myself?

Ah, but normally I am NOT critiqued on my pancakes. Normally, I am critiqued on my writing, if I am critiqued at all. I thought if she had just said that about my book, I would be standing here in a state of introverted shock wondering if I sucked or not. But it’s not my book, it’s my pancake and regardless of what she says about it, my pancake still tastes good.

(By the way, she loves my writing, so this is not about that, this is truly a parallel universe.)

You have to appreciate this. You can almost see the sluggish thoughts turning round on the cogwheel, the dawning of enlightenment as two parallel worlds compare. The frivolity of one making a sharp dichotomy for the hyper-importance of the other.

And that’s when the secret outs.

It’s all just opinion. It’s all just so meaningless. Just because someone doesn’t like your book or story does not mean it doesn’t taste good, or great.  Suddenly the world took on new perspective.

And that’s how writing and pancakes formed a parallel world right there in my kitchen.

By the way, if you’re so inclined: 

A little less than 1/2 cup of Bob’s of Red Mill gluten free pancake mix.

About the same on coconut flour plus some.

Add some almond flour maybe a 1/4 cup, measured by eye.

1 egg of variable size.

1/2 cup butter milk, minus a tiny bit.

Some regular milk to make a batter. Just pour in enough to make a consistency you like.

I used a hot plate with teflon because I just didn’t want to battle some frying pan. Set at 350 degrees Fahrenheit give or take.

Used spray on oil, but you can use whatever.

Then butter and pure maple syrup no HFC (high fructose corn syrup.)

If you make it let me know what you think and any modifications for the better.