punchy line

...and he (Simon Peter) saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the face-cloth ... not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself. - Jn 20: 6-7
-Jn 20: 6-7

Sunday, August 21, 2011

100 Steps to Making Pancakes

Sunday is pancake day. This is how we make pancakes in my house. If you know of any way to cut corners on the one hundred steps until pancakes are served at my table please let me know – I’ve tried everything and have resigned myself to this rather breadthy approach (no pun intended…ha):

Step 1: Rouse three year old daughter with a cheerful, “Honey, want some pancakes?” to which she will groggily assent.

Step 2: Head to kitchen where one-year-old son is already removing pans from the cabinet

3: Return pans to cabinet

4: Find die-cast metal car to distract son

5: Return to kitchen. Find appropriate pan. Place on stove

6: Say good morning to still sleepy daughter who walks into kitchen and asks, “Are you making pancakes?”

7: Reassure daughter of the approach of pancake purgatory, I mean, heaven

8: Realize her overnight diaper needs changing

(Steps 9- 20 are all concern potty business)

21: Return to kitchen, grease pan, turn on burner (low heat)

22: Start looking for mix and measuring cups

23: Notice that son has gotten stuck in dining room chair

24: Stop walking over to chair because he’s sorted it out

(Steps 25-31 involve doing this at least three more times)

32: Ask daughter to play with son

33: Whisk ¾ c of water together with 1 c of pancake mix

34: Respond to sudden eruption of crying in the living room

(35- 40 are the steps for resolving die-cast metal car conflict between siblings)

41: Find coloring book and crayons for daughter

42: Return to now heated pan and pour batter (ideal diameter: 4- 6”)

43: Notice that son is back to removing pans and wire racks from the cabinet

44: Return pans and wire racks

45: Admonish son

46: Try to block cabinet with left leg while flipping pancake with right hand

47: Vex son who only becomes more determined and tries to remove your knee with his fingers

48: Admonish son again

49: Flip pancake again

50: Admonish daughter who is telling off son

51: Wipe brow in frustration

52: Physically put son in living room

53: Place chairs to block his approach to the cabinets

54: Find princess plate for daughter and place pancake over Cinderella.

(Steps 55-60: pancake protocol – butter, syrup, slicing etc)

60: Squeeze past chairs, begin cooking second pancake

61: Become distracted by son who has now climbed on chairs and is dangerously pushing them forwards.

(62-75: Steps for preparing breakfast bottle and setting son up at the table to ‘eat’)

76: Realize you forgot to re-grease the pan

77: Say “Okay!” to daughter who is asking for milk

78: Try in vain to flip scorched pancake

79: Say “Okay,” again to daughter’s second request for milk

80: Ask daughter to be patient

81: Scrape half cooked pancake rind into the trash. Clean pan in sink

82: Return pan to burner, repeat steps 21 and 42.

83: Serve daughter milk

84: Cook pancake #3.

(85 – 90: Pancake protocol again)

91: Sit at table.

92: Put son on lap.

93: Instruct daughter who is now asking for water to “Please wait.”

94: Feel guilty

95: Retrieve water

96: Notice daughter also needs a wipe

(97-98 Wipe retrieval steps)

99: Place son on lap and try to feed him pancake

100: When he refuses three times, put him down, watch him and his sister play in the next room while enjoying your still raw-at-the-edges pancake.

Bonus Step: Wonder why you still haven’t bought that electric griddle for pancakes, then file it with the three thousand other things on the ‘to do in the next two years or so’ list.

The End – until next Sunday, when we will be having French toast.


  1. Kathleen in SteubenvilleAugust 22, 2011 at 1:28 PM

    I recommend that you act on the electric griddle purchase resolution. Specifically, buy a large,rectangular, teflon-coated electric griddle. They run about 30 bucks, and are sold in some supermarkets. Presto and Rival are common brands that work. Forget about frying pans for pancakes. Here's the thing: if you work with a round pan on a stove burner, a) it will take you all day to make 5 pancakes, because it is small, and b) you will probably end up with pancakes that are burned on the outside and raw batter on the inside. Yuck! Also, if your husband is available, make him deal with the children while you do the pancakes, or vice versa. If he is not available, I recommend that you don't make pancakes until he is. It's really hard to make pancakes and deal with young children at the same time. However, if you make them once a week, with someone keeping the kids out of the kitchen (or at least holding them as they watch you mix up the batter), you will become very proficient in a short amount of time. Also, a homemade buttermilk pancake is 25 times better than something from a mix, and not any harder, believe me. Your children will become pancake connoisseurs if they grow up with homemade stuff. Here's a very easy recipe (Preheat electric griddle to 375 degrees): 1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Whisk these dry ingredients together. In a separate container, beat one egg; add 1 to 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk to the egg; add about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil to the egg-buttermilk mixture. Add the liquid to the dry ingredients; adjust the liquid for the thickness of pancake you want. Make sure the griddle is hot before you drop the pancakes onto it. Fry them in butter or oil, whichever you prefer (best to avoid oils with a definite taste, such as olive). Enjoy.

  2. Yay, a homemade recipe for pancakes! Thanks for that, Kathleen, and for your other wise words. Unfortunately, it's tough because my husband is often gone in the mornings on weekends due to his work. I suppose I start to feel over-zealously domestic on Sundays...being the Sabbath and all. You'd think I'd learn my lesson, but I never seem to.


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