Thursday, March 5, 2009


Not too long ago, I received a box of Bisquick pancake mix as a gift. With a spatula. And although it was just garnish for a handsome new electric griddle, my house hasn't been the same since.

Sure there were pancakes here and there on "special" mornings like Christmas and random official holidays when the three of us were all home from work or school and felt like the day deserved a ceremonious kickoff. And those times are best because there's no mad-rush for the door and no minute-devouring sock hunts to blame for the pop-tart in the car breakfasts. Pancakes on holidays were where it was. Slow. And syrupy.

But after the box of Bisquick entered our lives, Saturday mornings started feeling a lot like holidays. At first, the "recipe" on the back threw me off. What? I don't just put water in the box and shake until the lumps are gone? Fresh eggs? And yes, there was even a deluxe version of the recipe for those folks celebrating a promotion or hitting the Wednesday night Power Ball number.

"Hold up, ye Goddess of Griddle Cakes. I'm not ready for this," I said standing be-jammied and wonky-haired in the kitchen while the box stared back at me. But it happened. I believe husband had to pry the box from my hands and take the wheel I was so floored (really, a recipe?). He shooed me from the kitchen and was even bold enough to go for the supreme cakes with a bit of vanilla extract in the batter. He measured. He mixed. He made the sacrificial test pancake while the dogs sat at the ready.

Shortcake set the table. I microwaved some ready-bacon (maybe the best invention since the push-up bra) and poured the pulp-free oj and then we waited. Giddy and panting along with the dogs, we all watched as the stack of carb-laden breakfast cakes grew and then made its way to the table. And they were supreme cakes. Thanks to fearless husband. And we devoured them sopped in syrup and butter. And said the five words that changed Saturdays into Supremecake-days,

"Now that wasn't so hard."

And so we eat pancakes. And we don't have to wonder what's for breakfast on Saturdays. Or stand frozen in front of the pantry staring at the inferior Frosted Miniwheats box or the oatmeal packets only fit for insipid Mondays and.... **gasp**...Tuesdays.

There are occasional Saturdays husband and I opt for fried egg sandwiches when the little miss is away with Grandma or her Dad. Those days are good, too. Subdued, safe, savory. We just really really love Supremecake Saturdays. More often than not, it's not just the deliciousness they stand for that we love, but the closeness in the kitchen we crave. Bumping butts and reaching across one another into drawers. Singing made-up songs about pancakes as the clank of dishes and clink of flatware fills the spaces in between sizzling batter and microwave bloops and beeps.

I suppose it's not what you can see going into the recipe, but what gets added to the mix that isn't on the back of the box that makes all the difference.

Thanks, Jens.
Thanks, MJ.

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