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Pancakes gone awry November 5, 2007

Posted by Joe in Family.

With the time change this past Sunday morning, I found myself wide awake an hour earlier than normal for a Sunday morning. So, as I sipped my fresh-brewed cup of coffee, I wondered how I could make the most of this hour. I decided to surprise my family by cooking breakfast.

Now, Laura is a wonderful cook. She doesn’t make the fancy dinners that you’d find in 5 star restaurants. You know the ones where you have 2 bites of pheasant surrounded by 4 strands of French-cut green beans that have been strategically placed to conceal the fact that you are paying a lot of money for very little food. No, Laura makes real food, really good. It’s a wonder I’m not 600 pounds.

Anyway, I used to know how to cook, that is before we got married. I didn’t have a lot in my repertoire, but I could make a few things in the kitchen. (Though my first and last attempt at Pumpkin pie didn’t go over too well.)

So, I decided this past Sunday to make pancakes. On the back of Bisquick box I found a  “Melt-in-your-mouth  pancakes” recipe. Viola! I’m in business!

I followed the directions and began putting the batter in the pan. As with a lot of things in life, cooking has a science and art facet to it. The science aspect is simply following directions. The art is knowing the little tricks of the trade, knowing just how hot to heat the skillet, knowing when to flip the pancakes over, knowing to shake the pan after you pour the batter in to flatten it out a bit.

The first few pancakes were admittedly a bit overdone as I tried to reacquaint myself with the artistic side of cooking. Eventually though, I got it and the latter pancakes turned out that golden brown color beautifully depicted in the picture beside the recipe on the box.

The kids helped set the table and we were ready for breakfast.

As everyone took their first bite, they thanked me for making breakfast. I took my first bite and thought “Well, they’re kind of dry, a little salty, and generally okay, but not nearly as good as Laura’s. Oh well, it’s probably just me being overly critical of my own cooking.” The rest of the family was dutifully eating.

Then I looked over at Lydia. At 9 months old, Lydia enjoys food. Every meal opens up a whole new world of tastes and textures for her. Especially this meal. She would take a bite of pancake, shake her head back and forth, stick out her tongue, and more or less act like she had just taken a bite of a lemon. Babies don’t lie.

Laura tactfully asked where I had gotten the recipe. “One the back of the box.”, I replied. I told her I was surprised that it had some unusual ingredients, like 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of baking soda.

“2 tablespoons? You mean 2 teaspoons.”, Laura suggested. “No, it had a capital T for tablespoon.” I replied.

Although I think its a woefully lacking standard, I do know that Tsp means tablespoon and tsp means teaspoon.

But, I got the box out to double check myself nevertheless. We looked at it together. Uh-oh! The recipe did call for 2 teaspoons. Laura also pointed out that it called for baking powder not baking soda.

Once again, I proved my culinary incompetence. “It’s the same thing. One is a name brand and the other is the generic reference to it, right?”  Wrong!

Only Benjamin could stomach the pancakes; the rest of us switched to cold cereal.

I’m glad that at times like this, it’s the intentions of your heart that count, not the product of your hands.



1. Becky - November 5, 2007

Even as a child, you have always been very sharp! You didn’t do this on purpose so that Laura would declare the kitchen her domain and off limits for you, did you? I’m speaking from experience like when you would wrinkle your bedding and open a text book on your bed before I got home so I would assume you had been studying. Very interesting approach to keep from cooking.

Really, I’m sure the effort made a good impression on Laura and the children…….I’m sure she enjoyed the laugh as well! I did!

2. Marci - November 6, 2007

I am sure they were fine. Good ole Lydia!! hee hee hee

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