Or, perhaps, “Fat Tuesday” or “Mardi Gras” if you are so inclined. I, however, prefer pancakes over the other two options, and so that is how I have chosen to identify the day. Very English of me, for someone who has few ties to England (other than a pre-teen Doctor Who obsession) and has yet to travel there, but listen, I like breakfast food and I’m not a huge fan of large gatherings, so the choice seems fairly self-evident for me.
And, since large gatherings are rather more iffy recently, I warmly invite you to join me on the pancake side.
Quite uncharacteristically, I woke up very early so I could make pancakes for the family before everyone had to leave for work or school. Characteristically, I did all the prep work last night so I wouldn’t have to get up any earlier than necessary; it all happened to work out, though. Because my brother (and, if I’m being good, me) aren’t supposed to eat gluten, I modified the family-favorite recipe to be gluten free – and I think the overnight refrigeration helped it along to its final, un-crumbly form.
It got great reviews and is the best gluten-free breakfast batter the family’s tried yet. (I think, if you don’t thin it out again after refrigeration, it would also make yummy waffles. But today is not waffle day, so that experiment will have to wait, now, won’t it?)
In a burst of chef-like joy, wanting to share my creation with the world, I posted the recipe to Allrecipes. Here is a link, if you are similarly gluten-handicapped as we are in this house.
If not, however, and you partake in the joy that is wheat, now seems a good time to share the ol’ “family” recipe (it does not originate in our family but is very much enjoyed here):
Grandma Jones Pancakes
Time to make: about an hour-ish. — Yield: 9-10 hearty pancakes or many small ones.
2 c. milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil of your choice
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 & 1/2 c. flour
Mix together wet ingredients in a bowl.
Add sugar and mix well.
(Sift together for best results). Combine dry ingredients in separate bowl. Slowly add to wet, whisking thoroughly the whole time. Avoid lumps! Lumps are icky icky bad, and you can quote me on that.
As soon as you have it as lump-free as you can manage, slap those 1/2- or 1/4-cup fulls of batter in a pan or on a griddle on medium heat. Add berries or choccy chips if you like.
When the raw side begins to bubble, flip and cook thoroughly on the other side – mind that you cook well to avoid both burning and a raw center. It’s all part of the balancing act that we call life.
Enjoy your pancakes! Serve with your favorite fixings and share with other correctly-minded folk who appreciate good breakfast food.
(Nota bene that these are still perfectly valid if served outside the realm of morning. Breakfast is a lifestyle, not a mere meal.)