Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The history of pancakes a' la Muslim Hippie timeline

Pre-Pancake Era::

(ful bel baid, or mashed fava beans with eggs-- an Egyptian dish)

 Here's the thing. I am NOT a big fan of sweet things for breakfast. Unlike Americans-- Egyptians don't eat cereal or scones for breakfast. Our breakfast usually entails mashed fava beans aka Ful, or eggs or falafel or a cheese sandwich. And on Friday mornings ( the equivalent of Sunday mornings) we have an elaborate breakfast combining all the above plus jam, clotted cream, pickles and lots and lots of pita bread. I remember we invited my Husband (at the time my fiance') for one of our Friday breakfasts and he was left happy, confused, stuffed and shocked. ( not in this order, but probably)

Here's another confession: we( meaning me and my army of siblings) ate our cereal, which we used to call back then "Corn Flakes", (the only imported brand available when I was growing up) with hot milk. The result wasn't your usual crunchy flaky experience ( as you probably imagined) but rather an oatmeal-y mushy replacement. And just to spice things up a little, we added, oh about three tablespoons of sugar. "So when did we happen upon this breakfast meal you might ask?" and the answer would be around snack time when we were waiting for Lunch ( which is usually served around three or four in the afternoon) and preferably while watching a black and white Egyptian movie by "Ismail Yaseen" ( an old famous funny looking Egyptian comedian-- the same idea like Jerry Lewis so to speak)

After more than four years of living amongst Americans, and even sharing my bed and my womb with Americans-- I am in total loss of what to eat for breakfast. It is indeed a dilemma. You see I might eat cereal for breakfast one day, but first it just doesn't do it for me( 15 minutes later you'll find me poking my head in the fridge looking for something more substantial while feeling guilty for "just" eating breakfast) and second I need something savory for breakfast, for it is the way of my people as I mentioned above. So I go back an forth from eating cereal, oatmeal to cheese sandwiches , eggs and Ful.

Year One:: 

(photo credit to newyork.seriouseats.com)

Pancakes is another story, my first experience with pancakes ( or something very similar) was when I was fourteen. I came upon something called Palashenkin. And since it is not traditionally served for breakfast in Austrian tradition, but rather a brunch or something like that, it passed. It in fact more than passed, It was a great hit. It is the sort of thing that we applied the rule of: 'when in doubt... make Palashenkin'. 

Dark Ages::
( this photo is from this morning's Oatmeal pancakes)

I was later introduced to American style pancakes from my sister's American friends ( or American exposed friends) at the AUC. I did not love them, comparing them to their fancier cousin, the Palashnkin, they were left without competition. I gave them a pass.

The occupation:: ( I know, it doesn't go well with my demented time line, but for the sake of the argument, bear with me)

The rest you probably guessed, I married an American, he taught me how to make pancakes and pancakes have made their mark into my life irreversibly. They are now our Eid breakfast tradition. So there, you have it-- the Americans won... again! 

Enlightenment ::

( the night before)

( the morning of)

 This blog has taken a life of it's own, I was seriously here to tell you about these great, new favorite pancakes by Molly. But one thing led to the next and here we are, at the age of enlightenment. I have finally discovered my all time favorite pancake recipe. It has all the ingredients to make the absolute perfect pancake: the crunch factor, check. The moist factor, check. The individually-poked-inside-batter-blueberries-so-the-batter-doesn't-change-into-weird-purplish-color factor, check. It is all here people, and all it needs is a little planning ahead, a very special morning for one very special fellow and four ( myself included) very hungry yet patient peeps. Check, check and check.
( leftovers! these were treated the same exact way that Molly suggested. Except I ate them cold without any additions for lunch!)

FYI, I am still at loss of what to eat for breakfast. If I have these every morning I am afraid of the consequences, they DO contain one stick of butter!

And FYI, we had lasagna for dinner, but that's another story! 



Anonymous said...

Spent last night reading through your blog and browsing through your fellow bloggers. Great stuff, keep them coming! Salma

Muslim Hippie said...

Cheers Salam, and so glad you stopped by :-)

Stella said...

I have made oatmeal pancakes for many years and you can get a very good result with 1/4 cup butter or a little more if you prefer. At the very most, half a stick of butter rather than a whole stick.

Your pancake history was very interesting and I found your url on Molly's blog.


zuza said...

i love middle-eastern food glad i found your blog! all last year i was studying claudia roden's "new book of middle-eastern food" - so interesting!

Muslim Hippie said...

Cheers Stella for the tips!
Zuza- Welcome to my little nook, I just want to clear things out a little, this is not a food blog, it's just ramblings of a mom with two wee ones, Food does come up here A LOT!