Yesterday I posted this glorious stack of pancakes I made in the middle of the day and got a few requests for the recipe. I try to make just about everything I eat healthier in some way, even if it’s small. Since Christmas, I’ve been on an American pancake kick (I’m missing home) and I’m starting to make them a bit more regularly.
This recipe is tasty and not fussy. Plus it’s egg-free. That includes not using a “no-egg” alternative. I’ve rammed it with chia seeds, so it’s super healthy.
makes approximately 6 servings, depending on the size of your pancakes
2 ½ c all purpose flour
4 T white sugar
4 t baking powder
1 t salt
2 ½ c water
2 T oil
2 or 3 heaping tablespoons of chia seed (or any other ground seeds you prefer)
optional: fresh fruit
- Sift all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and pour your oil and water in the middle. Stir until just blended.
- Heat a non-stick pan and pour your batter in. Turn once you start to see a few bubbles on top.
- Optional: Once you pour your batter in, add a few pieces of fresh fruit and cook as normal. Waiting until you’ve poured your batter in makes for a better pancake and keeps the fruit contained.
7/52 Seiji unwrapping the first of his birthday bounty. These were from his God mother’s visit the week before. He understood after a few tries that ripping the wrapping paper wasn’t the only fun part. There’s also a treat underneath.
8/52: A birthday pancake.
9/52: excited about all his new birthday presents from Grandma (my mom). She didn’t know what she wanted to get him, so she got him everything. We should be offered stock in Melissa & Doug.
10/52: Seiji really got into eating this week. I bought a sippy cup not too long ago and all the leaking was driving me nuts, so I got him a new cup. This has a straw and no handles. He’s taken to it rather quickly seeing that these are two things he’s unfamiliar with.
"A portrait of my son, once a week, most weeks, in 2014"
Dennis and I have been vegetarian for 8 and 9 years, consecutively. When we met, he still ate burgers and I was just shy of my first vegetarian anniversary. As I learned more about my change of diet, I realized I was (and still am) pescatarian and Dennis is mostly vegan due to sensitivities to foods. Over that time, I’ve learned a lot of information that I have easily and willingly shared with friends and family members who would like to eat differently.
At first I was not the healthiest eater. I didn’t understand how to use tofu or tempeh and I was spoiled by living in New York. The city was literally my oyster. I didn’t have a high paying job then, I was a receptionist and still living at home, but I didn’t have much debt so I could afford to spend $10 a night on my dinner at some local restaurant. I ate a lot of fried foods and meat-like meals.
I actually decided to give up meat in 2004, after I graduated from college. By then I was only eating chicken (and weekly fish on Sundays) and I was fed up with having chicken. How many ways can you have chicken? What really did it was one night my mother made cornish hens and put a whole small hen in my plate. When I finished and looked at the carcass, still intact, I was completely turned off. I probably swore off meat then. I made a vow to change my diet on January 1, 2005.
Days after the new year I got extremely sick and stayed that way for half of the year. Doctors and specialists had no idea what was wrong with me and after one trip to the ER, they suggested I might have Chrone’s Disease. Thankfully, in the end I didn’t have it, but I was more determined than ever to change up my diet. Sept 4, 2005 was my first day vegetarian, after getting a clean bill of health the week before.
I don’t recall when I started cooking dinners for myself, but I know it was some time after a year of eating out nightly. I remember doing the math on how much money I’d spent and wanting to slap myself because I was certain I could cook all of what I ate, and more, for a fraction of the cost. That’s when I started searching for cookbooks and looking online for suggestions.
Things changed over time and eventually I was a knock-out cook, which was a fantastic thing because I wasn’t that great of a cook when I made meat dishes. Getting the seasoning right for Jamaican dishes required more skill than I had patience for at 22. Plus, cooking vegetarian food took considerably less time. Slow cooking meat meant I needed to know what I wanted too many hours in advance.
Living here has afforded me even greater opportunity to become a better cook. Pregnancy really threw me off and I only started seriously contributing to dinners again this year, so there’s a lot of cleaning up to do. I’m married to a man that just about lives for fries. He can cut perfect fries in around 10 minutes and we own a deep fryer. It is my most shameful appliance, but at least I wasn’t even living in this country when it was bought.
I have hated our fridge since I first saw it and I still hate it, but I’m grateful for it. We have a mini, under the counter fridge. I always made fun of it, calling it a toy fridge especially since my college fridge was larger than this. After having to live with this fridge for so many years, it has really forced us to think about what we’re purchasing at the grocery store since space is limited. Everything we buy, we eat just about. We always have an empty fridge and replenish it as needed. I still want a normal fridge and space to make ice. I don’t even need anything fancy like the ice maker/crusher/filtered water in door system I grew up with in Brooklyn.
Our diet has been looking pretty white lately and it’s upsetting to me. I want to make sure we get into a better habit of wholesome food exploration and make it a part of our every day so that Seiji grows up being used to this. I grew up very fortunate with a home cooked meal daily and I’d like it if Seiji didn’t have fries regularly or pannekoek (Dutch pancakes). Those are treats and could even be regular treats, but not a daily diet. I feel that we can be pretty lazy sometimes when it comes to dinners and meal planning. There’s nothing wrong with thinking ahead about what we put in our bodies and it actually forces us to eat well when we do think about it.
That’s why I started the year off with 10 weeks, 10 soups. It’s really help to put me back in a cooking groove. We’re eating different veggies and having different tasting foods and textures. It’s exciting, but I’m ready for it to be over. I’ll finish the challenge I set myself, but I’m ready to try other things. I’ll talk more later this month about the new challenges I’m setting, but one thing will be different: there will be more than one challenge running.
So what am I attempting to incorporate? For starters, more complex grains than what we’re used to. New recipes to help expand our pallet. It is very easy to get into a rut with your cooking, and I’d like to keep my momentum going. I would love to start our own little indoor garden as well. I’ve wanted to do it since I moved here but just never got around to it. I’m going to try this year. If it works out, I can cut our grocery budget practically in half because the bulk of our food is fresh vegetables.