Saturday, May 30, 2009

What's the matter pancake batter?

So there goes my one post a week goal. Right out the driver's side window on our way back to Tucson. Was it Socrates, Dante, or Nietzsche who asked his students, "How can one truly live if they spend all of their time blogging, and how can one truly blog if they spend all of their time living?"

Maybe I heard it on NPR?


I guess it's kinda like when William was born. He spent just under 6 weeks in the NICU before he was allowed to come home. Sara and I made a pledge to be there every day for touch times, but a month in or so, I had to fly back to Tucson for a funeral, and we came to the conclusion, that we couldn't always be the best Dad or Mom, but that if we worked together, we could be the best parents. I wasn't able to be there every day for my boy, but we always made sure that one of us was there to let him know he was loved and wanted.

So I can't always post every week. So May only has like, what, 3 posts? So I should just shut her down, because some of the blogs out there, there's like a post a day? Those people obviously have not found World of Warcraft, and I need to just let it go, and look at this as a way to get some "me" time in my life.

Alright, I'm all pepped up and ready to cheer for a Junior Varsity Volleyball squad. Just let me stretch for a year or two first.

Tucson was amazing, the boys love their grandparents and the grandparents love them. I ended up making tacos for the open house, by the way, no wings. Makes me a little sad, but maybe I'll do it for the NBA Finals Game 2. Maybe I should have a wing party? Invite guests to bring their favorite wings and beers to match?

This might just happen! Although housework will need to be done... which is okay, William loves to clean.

Ah, William...

So we (my family and my mother-in-law) were making pancakes for breakfast, and William asks his grandma what's in the pitcher.


"Batter?" William tilts his head.

"Yes, sweetie pie, pancake batter." She rubs the top of his head.

His eyes get big, eyebrows are raised in an inverted "V," and that bottom lip starts to protrude in heart broken protest.

"But Grandma, I don't like pancake batter!"

This is entirely my fault.

There are many dangers lurking in the nooks and crannies of my kitchen. Japanese knives, German knives, Mandoline Slicers, Cuisinart attachments... One must be careful when cooking with young ones in the kitchen, and then again, there are different types of scars.

We decided to make pancakes several months earlier for Sara one morning to celebrate the end of her morning sickness. William was so excited. I prepped everything for the dry ingredients, grabbed his stepping stool so that he could have his own station, and set upon the task of teaching my son how to cook.

We mixed the dry ingredients delighting in the plumes of flour "smoke" that wafted from the mixing bowl, managed to get all of the egg and none of the shell into the other bowl, and all of this with much laughter. I am such a good dad! I remember this thought so clearly as I was reaching up into the pantry for a little more sugar.

"I need a spoon daddy!" comes from over my left shoulder. I tell him to grab one from the drawer as I start searching for the vanilla bean paste. I hear the opening of the drawer, my hand closes around the bottle of paste, and as I'm pulling them down, I hear what can only be described as the sound one would make at the dentist's office if their mouth was propped open against their will with that nasty fluoride treatment.

I turn and there, in the middle of the kitchen, is my boy William with the dry ingredients bowl in one hand, a serving spoon the size of Texas in his other, his jaw nearly touching the floor, and his tongue following suit coated in raw flour. He's completely motionless. I guess it's kinda like stubbing your toe. You try not to move, because if you do that stabbing pain will leave your toe, shoot right up leg, and make you double over in a violent yet silent cussing fit. He would have been a statue but for his eyes. His eyes staring right at me welling with tears and wtf?

It was the best Tom Hanks eating caviar impression in "Big" I have ever seen.

"Oh mi hijo..." I say as I am biting my lips shut trying to stem the convulsions of silent laughter. Man, am I the worst friggin' dad, or what!?!

I wipe him clean, give him a hug, and then by the grace of God, a glass of water-- which, no doubt, made a very nice slurry in his stomach.

"I don't like it, Dad."

It was plain, simple, and cut like a knife. The truth shall set you free, and so it did for William, as he split and began playing with his trains...

"They taste better once their cooked!!!" My useless rebuttal fell on deaf ears, and I have since learned my lesson.

Banana Blender Pancake Batter, so as to avoid your toddler eating raw flour and ruining things. Forever.

Adapted from Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home:

1 cup flour
2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
2 tbsp vegetable oil
tiny pinch of salt
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
1 brown and very ugly banana
1/3 cup of water divided.

Start off with the flour, add the eggs, milk, oil, vanilla bean paste, sugar and salt, and blend that for 10-15 seconds. It'll look wrong, but that's okay. Scrape down the sides if needed, and then add the banana and one part of the water and blend until smooth, adding the additional water if needed in small batches.

Refrigerate for an hour.

Heat up that skillet or non-stick frying pan. Pick your poison butter or oil, and be prepared to burn your first two before the others come out just right.


  1. I'm trying to keep up with my "post every two weeks" rule, and read the blogs I like at least every few days - and still, I can't even make THAT! Life does get in the way sometimes, and kids don't offer much downtime (mine's almost two, but I think 18 months is the new "2" - oy). I enjoy reading, so keep posting and those that post everyday well, they must not sleep.

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