Stacey is off in Florida with her mom for Spring break, and Scout was with Dave until about 5:30p, but even so we had a good turnout for Easter dinner at our house this year: 8 guests. Liberty and I made 10, and my dining room table seats 6, 7 if you scrunch, so that became the kids table. The adults sprawled out in the living room, chatting (talk included zombies and vampires, so clearly I've selected a good family to marry into) and relaxing. No football on the TV, no gender separation followed by talk of politics and sex, but instead we had about an hour of gawking at people playing Pick-Up Sticks.
For the food, everything was pretty good, surprisingly. I got lucky on the chicken roasters, they came out done and juicy, the candied yams were well received, Eric and Zoe brought over a great salad, just a couple lettuces with some cranberries and nuts, but super yummy. Heather and Steve brought over a greenbean casserole, and that went fast. In fact, everyone gorged on the dinner so much that the desserts went mainly untouched.
In my spastic rush to get everything ready for the dinner, I neglected to get breakfast food for little Scout for the week, realizing this moments before I was going to run off to work Monday morning. Fortunately, we had all the raw ingredients around to make Jamba pancakes, so 30 minutes of rattling in the kitchen, Scout had a breakfast I haven't made in about 6 months, I had a second breakfast, and got to smooch the wife before I peeled out of the cul de sac and hastened to the office.
"What's a Jamba pancake," you ask? As everyone related to Liberty knows, they're the wheat pancakes her mother makes from scratch. Jamba = Grandma in Scoutish, hence they are "grandma's pancakes". I feel I should spell out the recipe again here:
1 cup wheat flour
1/4 cup wheat germ
2 TBS sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
2 TBS oil
1 tsp vanilla
Directions: Mix it all up and cook them like any other pancake mix, or, if you prefer...
Combine dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and stir. Add in the milk, oil, and egg, stir again, but don't make the batter too smooth. Let the batter sit for a minute for the baking powder to do its thing, then heat a pan at medium-low temperature. If the pan isn't non-stick, smear on just a touch of butter or oil - not enough to add flavor to the batter, just enough to lube up the pan. Just before cooking, add in the vanilla to the mix.
Once pan is heated, pour in 1/4 cup (or a little less) of batter per pancake. If your batter is the right thickness, it won't bubble up much as it cooks, so watch the height and color of each pancake. When it rises a little or darkens, it's ready to be flipped. Flip once, don't touch it, and pull it off about 30 - 45 seconds later. Repeat until you run out of mix.
This makes enough to feed one very hungry dad, two hungry Scouts, or three regular Scouts. The ingredients add up to around 1000 - 1100 Calories for the whole mix, depending on what type of milk you use.
From walking into the kitchen to finishing the last of the mix usually takes me about 25 - 30 minutes. A rookie move is to try to cook these faster - big mistake. Turn up the temperature and they'll burn before they cook through, smoosh them and they'll taste like all the baking powder that didn't react. Slow is key. These are pancakes for people who like to both eat healthy and relax in the kitchen. If you want fast, buy Eggos or a drive-through breakfast. If you want super-awesomeness, make Jamba pancakes.
It's funny I should talk that way since I haven't made them in 6 months, but, still, they rock.
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