One of my favorite foods is pancakes. So I was happy to discover that it is also Nate the Great's favorite food, as the Wise Old Owl and I were reading the first book in the series. As the Owl flipped through the last pages of the book, he discovered a pancake recipe and got excited. It was a standard recipe, calling for such things as all-purpose flour, eggs, milk, and butter, which of course we never use. He wanted to know if we could make the recipe with sorghum flour. Then he scanned through the ingredients to see what else was in them. Sugar, baking powder, salt, all OK. He was sad to see it contained an egg, then remembered he could use an egg replacer. Milk was easy, he requested rice milk. He was stuck on the butter, but I suggested coconut oil and he cheerfully agreed. He really wanted Nate-the-Great pancakes for dinner. Rather than explaining to him why it might not work to drop in substitutes for so many ingredients and how gluten-free recipes need a mix of flours and things like xanthan gum, we just went ahead and made them they way he requested. (I added a scoop of ground chia seeds when he wasn't looking because, well I need to get protein into him somehow!) The first few pancakes were pretty flat, almost like crepes, but he gobbled them up. I added a pinch of baking soda and a splash of apple cider vinegar on the fly to puff them up. Then the rest of the pancakes got nice and bubbly and rose up like normal pancakes. And do you know what? They looked and tasted like regular old pancakes, the ones my dad made on Saturday mornings with all-purpose flour and milk and eggs and butter. The Owl dipped them in maple syrup (a new thing for him!) because Nate the Great likes maple syrup. So not that we were lacking options for pancakes, since I make them at least once a week and we have about a dozen different yummy recipes, but it was a fun little activity for us. I hope I can find a Nate the Great book where he says he likes meat or vegetables....
 


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